After an MVP contending spring split in the support role, the news that Treatz would become SK’s starting jungler shocked many. Despite a troublesome start, and a roster swap in the support role, Treatz and SK remain hopeful that they can contest for playoffs. We sat down with Treatz to hear his views on the transition away from support, the jungle meta and how he is feeling facing off against MAD Lions and EXCEL next weekend.
Below is the interview transcript. The interviewer questions are in bold, with Treatz’ answers left standard.
Firstly, I want to talk to you about this weekend and that went for you guys. You got the 1-1 weekend, with what felt like a pretty good win over Schalke and losing to Vitality. Firstly, how was the Schalke game?
I think the Schalke game overall is pretty decent, one of our better games I would say. I think the game went according to plan, we had a slow early game and then out scaled them slowly. We just took over the game from there. We stacked the dragons, took the herald and then it was pretty smooth sailing.
What about Vitality? Obviously in that game you did fall short, do you know what went wrong?
Yes, definitely. The game plan was similar to the Schalke game, but I think we made way too many mistakes in the early game individually. That caused them to snowball out of control. I think we did an ok job of slowing down the game and making them work for it, but ultimately the early game disadvantage proved too much.
I want to cast back to last year and your time on TSM. You got to spend some time around some veterans like Doublelift, Bjergsen and Biofrost. Do you think the time on TSM helped you grow as a player?
I will definitely say it helped more as a player outside of the game, rather than inside. It definitely hardened me as a person, and in general, I understood more how I wanted to play the game and how my value impacts the team. I think in-game not as much, I don’t think I got to play my style of champions or in general get to play that much. So, I think it helped me more as a person than as a player.
I think coming back in spring it’s fair to say you had an incredible spring split. A lot of people were arguing that you were one of the best supports in the league, and definitely the best player on SK. What do you think changed for you coming back over to the LEC and onto this SK roster?
It kind of came to form the TSM personal development, I really understood how I play the game and how I want to play the game. I made sure everyone on my team understood I was an aggressive player, and I will go for plays. I made it really clear that I can carry games doing this as well. So I kind of had this don’t give a f**k attitude, just play my game which a lot of viewers see. I do this in jungle as well, even though it’s not as clear cut. Now I can’t play Alistar and flash knock-up people. Now I just run at them with Gwen instead.
One thing I want to talk about is the difference between the jungle and the support role. I imagine you are very much one of the shot callers for the team. While the playstyle is different, how has the role swap felt for you?
I think overall the transition was pretty easy, from playing support to jungle. I think the biggest thing I noticed is I don’t have this type of ‘go’ button anymore, where I can rally the troops and go into a fight. Now I have to be more of a follow-up, or a shot caller initiator instead of actually clicking the buttons to go. I think that has been the biggest struggle for me, but everything else has felt pretty natural.
I think building on that, I’d want to ask you about the jungle meta. You say you don’t have these ‘go’ buttons, do you think if we saw a rise in the Sejuani or the Zac for example it would help you?
It would make it easier for us as a team to have a unified goal. I think even with Lilipp, we just haven’t had the same amount of time as we had with me playing this style. It would definitely make it easier, but even with this style, we can make it work. It just isn’t as clear cut as a Jarvan or a Sejuani where you see the ult and just go.
You did get the 1-1 this weekend, so has Lilipp coming in helped? Has the team atmosphere been good since the transition?
Yeah, I think overall the team atmosphere has been good throughout the entire split. I think even with Jesiz playing, and us being a five-man it was good at that time. It is also good with Lilipp. In general, he is just a positive person, and eager to learn which fits in well. Obviously, we’re not having the best start even with Lilipp, I think we are making a case to improve towards the end of the split.
And I was going to ask how you’re feeling going into the second half of the split. The first half didn’t go as planned, but it seems like you have the tools to turn it around. Is there specific stuff you want to work on for the second half of the split?
I think in general, we just want to win the games that we have under our control. I think that’s the biggest thing. There were at least 4 games in the first half where we have full control over the game, and then just decide to let it go for some reason. So that is our biggest goal – solid early game into a solid mid-game, and then actually closing the games out. Other than that, we’re still improving individually which hopefully will make the games easier to close out.
I definitely hope so. Looking to next week, you face Mad Lions and Excel coming up. Firstly, with Mad Lions and Elyoya, who is a very talented jungler. MAD has had a low split so far, especially with coming back from MSI. How are you feeling about them as a team, and the matchup?
They are always good because they are decisive in their plays as a five-man. Someone doesn’t get caught out or do something stupid. They are always as a five-man, int or no int. Their mid/jungle is the core of their team, and they snowball a lot of games from that. I’m looking forward to playing that matchup again and have a better showing and outplaying the mid 2v2.
And then with EXCEL, they were having a slow split as well. They’ve brought up Advienne and Markoon from BT Excel. They feel like they’ve got this surge with the change, but it could be a honeymoon phase. Are you still feeling good about facing up with them?
Yeah, I’ve said in other interviews that I think they’re both better players than those on Excel before, but I don’t think they are that much better. They bring a lot more aggression, and a lot of confidence coming up from academy. I think it is kind of a honeymoon phase, but I think they are better. It’s kind of a mix, and we’ll have to see how they do through the end of the split. We’re still confident, and I think Excel is an easy team to read, both in the meta and how they play. I think that will remain the same and that is why we beat them last time.
My final question, to put you on the spot – do you think SK can turn it around for the end of the split? Is there light at the end of the tunnel for SK fans?
Obviously, the goal is still playoffs. I think the thing that works in our favour is a lot of teams are around this 4–5-win mark. In case we do have 2 positive weekends in a row, then it will be very possible. Until then we just have to work hard and make sure that it can actually become a reality. I’m hopeful.