Since the departure of Owen ‘smooya’ Butterfield from BIG Clan, there have been mumbled questions about their legendary in-game leader Fatih "gob b" Dayik's judgement, with rumours circulating that he had been instrumental in forcing the Englishman out. With those never confirmed, people were waiting to see if the change was a masterstroke, but so far the results suggest no, and that the thinking behind it was not all that joined up.
Now, in an interview with HLTV, he has revealed that the famously all-German team are currently having their new Turkish star XANTARES learn English. For those who don't know, trying to communicate in English is what apparently caused so many issue in communication during the smooya era, making it curious they'd ask their new Turkish star to work on that rather than German, the native tongue of the four other players.
This seems a little baffling, as the reasons given for the smooya cut mainly revolved around his need to speak English in a mainly Teutonic system, and possibly shows that there were more personal reasons behind the move. Either way, deciding to continue unabated with the English comms is a decision that we are sure would have taken more than a few people by surprise.
Short-term vs long
Now, the obvious reasoning behind the move would probably be that it is easier in the short term, as all five have some level of competence in English at least, but the lessons of the last two years would seem to suggest that was the wrong decision anyway. After all, all five members of the previous MIBR roster spoke English, arguably to a higher standard than BIG, but quickly reverted to Portuguese despite having some seriously talented anglophone stars.
For BIG, who cannot afford the likes of Stewie or Tarik, there is even less reason to stick to that language, and the move also casts further doubt on gob b’s "genius", or at least the combined genius of the BIG brains trust. Long-term, learning German is the obvious best solution, allowing four of the team to communicate seamlessly in their mother tongue, and their fifth to be exposed to his "new" language for the maximum time possible.
A degree of that comes down to the fact that, for a CSGO team, the idea of staying together for even one year seems like a tough ask, and that is obviously going to make XANTARES more attracted to the idea of learning English rather than German, as it is useful in way more CSGO situations. However, from gob b’s point of view there should only ever have been one choice, if he really believes in his decision to remove the smoo and sign XANTARES in his place.
Sadly, like many of his generation, gob b is somewhat protected from criticism by his long tenure in the game, with pundits that remember his glory days from CS iterations of yore unable to accept what he has evolved into in CSGO. Keep in mind this is a player with a peak 1.0 rating in his entire CSGO career, and one that currently presides over a "tactical" team that have lost 0-2 to Vitality, Valiance and HellRaisers this year alone.
With other teams, the temptation would be to change, but BIG are committed to at least an 80% German team it seems, and there is probably no better option than gob b right now, if that is what you want. When you take the decision to speak English though, it no longer makes sense to limit yourself to German leaders, or even players really, especially ones that have produced so little for such a long time now.
Picture: Copyright: ESL / Timo VERDEIL