We spoke to eUnited in game leader Anthony “vanity” Malaspina about eUnited’s time at ESL One New York 2019, the team’s future is in a turbulent time for North America and what he feels the team needs to work on the most.
When you think of the cream of the NA crop, eUnited is not the first team to come to mind. However, eUnited has quietly been putting in hard work and qualified for ESL One: New York. While the team went out 7th-8th, they showed tremendous poise and determination against ENCE in both maps and against Team Liquid on their first.
We talked to the in game leader for eUnited about a lot of the teams aspirations and struggles with trying to compete with the best of the best in North America.
Ezekiel: Vanity, after coming off a great showing here at ESL New York, with tough fights against the likes of Team Ence and Team Liquid, could you tell us how the team dynamic has shifted since you added Freakazoid?
Vanity: I think adding Freakazoid has put a breath of fresh air into the team, he has helped to completely fix a lot of the issues we were having, whether it was personality or in game; so I think for the most part that it’s going to be a positive change and we’re only going to get better from here.
Ezekiel: So his brother Cooper joined back in late 2018, what’s it like having two brothers on a team?
Vanity: Playing with brothers is definitely interesting, you can tell they have a different dynamic because they have been with each other for like 25 or 26 years, however old they are, so there is a different dynamic between them; but I think it will help us a lot because people are a lot more comfortable around each other now.
Ezekiel: So in NA you have Liquid then EG as the top 2 teams in the region and then you have a gap before you have a cluster of teams such as C9, CoL and NV all rebuilding and then yourselves who are an established roster now. What’s it like competing with all them teams, especially in the pro league and also FACEIT?
Vanity: I think NA is in a really weird transitional period where we have nothing to play in North America, like we had I think, the highest maps we had the last 3 months was either 40 maybe 45 if we are lucky, whereas the same tier teams in EU the high tier 2 teams they have like 110 maps, so obviously they have a lot more match experience. I think that’s one of the larger reasons why North American players don’t develop as quickly as their European counterparts. I mean as soon as I made, pro they killed both online leagues, EPL and ECS, they just pulled tournaments ones on LAN, one being a regular tournament in their format, so it’s hard to build stability when you don’t really have matches to go off of.
Ezekiel: So I talked to Br0ky of FaZe earlier and I asked him about this being their first event with a new player as well. So how do you feel ESL One went with yourselves of course being the underdogs, you showed a lot of fight and tenacity, what did you take away the most from this event?
Vanity: I think the biggest takeaway from this event is that we know that we can do it, for instance we played ENCE, who are the number 6 team in the world, very close on 2 maps and of course Liquid we played them super close on Overpass. Mirage…. well we played only one map against liquid that’s obvious, but the other 3 maps i think could have easily gone our way. I think both Overpass maps should have gone our way, just some unfortunate like LAN experience issues such as trading players spots on CT sides was the main issue with why we didn’t close out either game.
Ezekiel: Last question, who do you think is going to win ESL New York and who are you cheering for?