I like watching Naded play, I have enjoyed watching some of the teams he has played on, but seeing him lay out the history behind each team is both saddening and disheartening. As a former MLG Pro player I can barely stomach reading some of it. In his latest blog, Naded sheds some light on the general mentality of a wide range of Pro players within the MLG Pro Player spotlight. He has had the opportunity to team with some of the best players in the Halo community and from his perspective it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.
The blog emphasizes the lack of proper mentality, dedication and practice that he witnessed from previous teammates throughout his career. Naded’s blog is not the first that I have seen that really paints a negative picture of the mindset of some of the league’s best players, but seeing it stretched out over a three-year span is a little overwhelming. What surprised me the most was two things:
- The absurd number of team changes that goes on in one season.
- The negativity Naded expressed regarding previous teammates
Let’s be honest, I was actually surprised by a lot more than those two things. The underlying theme of the blog seemed to be one that revolved around “not practicing” and calling out other players for their lack of dedication. The whole thing is definitely an eye-opener for some of the players I considered to be the hardest working Pro players out there. Walshy comes to mind and is mentioned quite a bit as are Shockwave and Defy. This was definitely one long blog and I took the time to discuss my thoughts on various situations Naded shared:
I plan on never letting any immaturity, laziness, or just straight up not even caring about winning EVER happen on my team again.
Ironically, I found the this quote as a bit of a paradox with Naded’s argument, although backed by strong emotion the blog clearly expresses negative feelings towards a number of players. Naded does manage to lay blame on himself a few times, however it is just as immature to place the blame so frequently on everyone else.
We played pretty well and got 8th place. The only real problem on the team was that everyone was so young and it caused personality problems teaming with Wooly. After talking about it, I dropped Wooly and went on to pick up Foulacy and practiced for San Diego.
San Diego 2008:
With the new pick up of Foulacy we were a lot more confident with this team…We ended up placing 8th again…
Overall I was happy with how this team was going but I got an offer after the tournament from team Classic.
I decided to part ways with Fatal Images and join up with Classic (Ant, Soldier187, Legend) because I thought they knew what they were doing and probably was better than the team I was on. Boy, was I wrong.
I’m emphasizing the discussion surrounding dedication, hard work, and practice. He had a team that placed top 8, dropped players and abandoned teams. Is that dedication? At the end of it, he speaks down on the team that offered him a chance at a better placement (Classic) questioning their lack of dedication while abandoning his previous team.
It felt like everyone was thinking “Hey, lets just waltz into Orlando with any preparation or strategies and win”
Legend later on told me that they thought we could just not prepare because we were already good enough to win…
I can’t believe anyone would straight up say that, at least put some effort towards winning. Sadly, according to Naded this is the exact mentality plaguing quite a few Pro players.
You can say you want to win but if you don’t show that you care and put in really hard work and effort, trust me, you don’t want to win that bad….
I can’t agree with Naded more on this point.
So after a very disappointing 10th place finish I was kicked off for NO reason at all and they made me feel like it was my fault but really when I joined the team everyone had the “we are already good enough to win attitude.”
I think there is an issue with being upset about being kicked off of a team after abandoning a previous team. If anything, I would be more concerned with karma (not the pro) playing a hand in what was happening during his career.
Right when I joined this team I was hearing I think that Defy that Gandhi never really practiced….
I wish that we could have practiced more but the problem was we just, as a team, didn’t care when we did practice… We ended up placing 10th place, another abysmal performance.
I got an offer from team Carbon (Shockwave, Anarchy, Ghost). I was excited because I knew these guys would put in effort and practice….
I think we might have practiced for a combined 12 hours in roughly 2 months…
We ended up placing 7th…it was a pathetic performance considering the talent we had on the team…
“when $100.000 is on the line everyone immediately becomes dedicated.”
Shockwave, Ghost and Anarchy are three guys that I envisioned practicing as often as possible and they were not. After the tournament, Naded briefly details how “dedicated” players become when the prize pool is significantly increased. Is the prospect of winning $100,000 is the only thing motivating them to excel? Is the security blanket that MLG has provided for the Pro players causing them to practice much less?
We got some decent online practice and we started to finally feel like a team. We got a great LAN in before Vegas at Legit’s apartment so we felt really good going into the tournament.
We end up having an amazing tournament beating Triggers Down and Final Boss to go on and play Str8.
After not talking to anyone from my team in a month or two I actually got the feeling I was going to get kicked for no reason again. I get a call from Shockwave saying that I am off the team…
They practiced and saw results, yet the team dismantles at the end of the season after placing third at Nationals? Where is the dedication to improving? Placing third place has no bearing on them for the future? Was Naded dropped from this team because he has conflicts in his personality? Seriously, what is going on? I wouldn’t completely change my team after placing third at Nationals.
I was already was making a team with Karma. We ended up picking up Defy and Best Man because I knew they had great potential. At this point I am so fired up I felt like I was 15 years old playing for the first time again. To bad my teammates didn’t feel the same way.
Meadowlands 2009: (Karma, Defy, Best Man)
Karma played a lot but he was dealing with a lot of outside distractions…Defy was really into world of warcraft at the time, so he never really even got on Halo or even talked to us…
We played Lockdown ball a total of 3 times and that was a gametype in our first match against Status Quo. How can we expect to win the tournament when we have played one of the gametypes 3 TIMES? We ended up placing 9th place…
We put in ZERO effort as a team. On a team, EVERYONE has to be dedicated to win, if just ONE person does not care even a little bit, it will affect the team enough to lose. That is why I decided to kick off Defy and Best Man, to find 2 players to have the drive to play and be dedicated. We ended up picking up Tetra Shot and Tensor.
Different players, same scenario. He name drops Karma, Defy and Best Man, questions their apparent lack of dedication, and proclaims that he was the only one dedicated to win. After the 9th place finish he dropped Defy and Best Man and added two completely different players.
Tensor was probably one of the worst teammates I have ever had, he showed no respect, did not want learn, and was very cocky for some reason. He had skills but he couldn’t use his brain.
We went to the tournament with hardly any good practice because of all the “Tensor drama” and we did not even make it out of amateur bracket. This is the worst I have ever felt; I wanted to quit Halo after this.
I started to play with team Ambush a little bit online when I got home which was fun but I got a miracle call from Shockwave. He said he wanted to pick me up on Carbon along with Walshy and Defy.
Here is another scenario that looks exactly like the others. Naded places the blame on “Tensor drama,” calls him out for his attitude and irresponsibility. I did find it interesting to see that they were unable to make it out of Amateur bracket. It certainly makes me wonder if the Pro seeding is doing the Amateurs justice, considering the apparent lack of dedication and practice amongst some of the Pro players.
Dallas 2009 – Anaheim 2009:
I finally felt like I was on a team again. We got along, practiced hard, and all wanted to win.
The only problem I had with that team is nobody would let me put input into our strategies. What would happen was I would explain a strategy that I have been thinking about…usually they would not even try to implement it out team strategies. They would make me feel like I did not know what I was talking about and I truly believed that some of my strategies would help us win the tournament.
Really…I mean really? Did this go on?
We ended up placing 2nd and 3rd going into national championships. Before Anaheim though, we did not practice as much as we did for Dallas online and LAN that was kind of a joke because it was laggy so I kind of got the feeling that our team was slacking off and I was kind of right.
They initially practiced with the mindset needed to win. They placed well both tournaments, however he points out the team began “slacking off” from Anaheim leading up to the National tournament. It was also very interesting reading his comments regarding his problem with not being able to provide his input into team strategy. I wonder if he brought it up as an issue within the team? If so, would Shockwave and Walshy have responded in a constructive manner or continued to make him feel like he did not know what he was talking about? The whole team mindset seems so distorted and far away from my approach with AmazYn. It’s really difficult to understand how these guys continue to be successful with such a, quite frankly, disgusting attitude.
Before this tournament I did not talk to any of my teammates hardly at all until about 2 weeks until the tournament…
Just about 2 weeks until the tournament we finally all get on and the first thing Walshy says is “Wow I did not even realize the tournament was so close.” This really upset me because I am sitting here at home working my ass off everyday, searching MLG playlist by myself, working on my jumps, and planning strategies while these guys are not even thinking about Halo at all.
We hardly got any quality practice at all. We played absolutely pathetic against Classic both times…
Shockwave was hardly communicating at all and it was terrible communication…I called him out on it in game and he yelled at me and made me feel embarrassed.
We ended up losing that series and placing 3rd…
There was a lot to take away from his Orlando experience. The first of which is the lack of practice leading up to the National tournament. He stressed how previous teams became more dedicated knowing that $100,000 is on the line, yet Walshy was surprised that the tournament “was so close.” The recurring lack of practice and dedication are prevalent throughout and it is no different for Carbon at the National championship? The disappointing thing about it all is that I remember wanting Carbon to win the Nationals in ’09, but knowing that this went on is sickening.
To end this long summation of Naded’s blog I want to quote some of the negativity he expressed towards other players in 2010. I was appalled — Is this really what it is all about?
Orlando 2010: Heaven and Earth (Karma, Killerdrew, Clutch).
Killerdrew is still pretty new to MLG so he has a terrible mental game…I just wish he could accept criticism without taking it personal and he would become really good. He had his own outlook on playing and I tried to teach him my knowledge of Halo but did not seem to take it serious.
Clutch just came off of a national championship win and he really was feeling good. He talked about winning that tournament so much it ticked me off at one time during the LAN because I wanted to just focus on this tournament.
My old team (Carbon) made me feel like I did not know what I was talking about so I was kind of worried about saying anything.
Columbus 2010: (Walshy, Best Man, Defy).
I believe that it is the captain’s job to enforce going over film and strategies and Walshy just wasn’t confident enough to take that role.
So as a team we decided to kick off Walshy.
Raleigh 2010: (Defy, Walshy, SK)
I was the only player to drop a big positive K/D and I was playing really well. But all of that does not matter if the team is not even close to being on the same page. That team was a joke, and just seeing SK and Walshy get mad after we lost to Ambush was comical.
D.C. 2010: (Tsquared, Ghost, Defy)
After the tournament I joined Dynasty (Heinz, Clutch, APG). I was excited for this team but I got a call from Tsquared saying that he wanted me to join him and Ghost. He persuaded me and I ended up joining and picking up Defy as our 4th.
After a joke of a Halo: Reach tournament in Dallas I realized how much I have actually been screwed over and I really just thought about quitting. I was tired of relying on other people and having them never come through.
Killerdrew and Karma put in hardly ANY effort at all into Dallas. Killerdrew was not focused and told me that he was thinking about quitting and Karma’s communication was terrible. I love you guys and I know it’s a new game and all, but seriously, step it the f*ck up.
-Brett “NaDEd” Leonard Follow: @NaDEd_MLG
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