Fer, the king of bait

Many of us have been there, especially when it comes to the "us" who work online. You receive some news, possibly good, that seems unrealistic but not impossible, and have a moment of hope before the crashing realisation that it is April 1st, and you may be the victim of a prank. It might be a girl you really liked pretending to care, or worse one of those fake lottery tickets that momentarily gives a person hope before tearing it all away.

With that in mind, when you play professionally it is vital to understand the context of your own career, and that not every April 1st is going to be an appropriate time for a joke. Let’s say you are a former world champion, for example, who is now in what amounts to a career slump, and your team is also losing games and tournament titles they should be able to claim with ease. That might be a bad time to joke about being cut…

Gallows humour?

As you can see from the time and date, the tweet was made on March 31st, which was April 1st already where Fer currently is, and was instantly written off as an April Fools' joke, due entirely to that fact. The timing was already a little bit awkward, as Fer himself is in a career slump, has recently had medical issues, and is playing for a team that bombed out of WESG and is currently failing hard at StarSeries & i-League Season 7 Shanghai.

However, the man is a legend, and the way he plays is so intangibly brilliant that it’s hard to say he’s finished. That meant that when he doubled down on his joke with a second tweet, this time in Portuguese, people were still divided as to how serious he might be, and eventually rewarded for their scepticism when he revealed that it had all just been a hilarious joke.

The final tweet roughly translates as "I don't understand why they think I'm leaving the team or anything like that. This was the last championship I played with the guys..before we travel to the next, Blast Miami. See you there…". There were a few drawn into the bait, including a couple of relatively respectable news outlets, not by their own fault, but for the reasons listed above.

Balls of steel

You can read this two ways, of course, depending on your orientation. One is to say Fer was extremely tone deaf and ignorant of the context of the team with the original joke, and potentially ask how aware he is of his own struggles, while the other is a more basic, banter-based observation about the sheer weight of Fer’s cojones, and the belief that still exits in his ability.

To play as badly as he and his team have in recent months is tough, and public opinion of the man himself has been damaged by those failures. Making such a joke in these circumstances, and getting your famously cutthroat in-game leader to join in at a time when he’d be justified in giving you the chop shows just how little Fer cares for "the opinion of sheep".

Whether he is still a lion or not remains to be seen, with MIBR’s performances in China looking more toothless and tired than kind of the jungle, but one thing is for sure. When it comes to bait, there is no situation too scary, no joke too close to the bone, for the most legendary lurk in modern CSGO, and this April Fools' showed that in legendary fashion. If only he could get his mojo back in the server…

Image: Fer