During IEM Katowice 2022 we got the time to talk to es3tag about how he is fitting into the Ninjas in Pyjamas system. We also take a look at how well they have done so far and what the team's chances are of progressing farther at the tournament.
The Ninjas in Pyjamas haven't made any changes to their roster ahead of the 2022 season, yet with Nicolai "dev1ce" Reedtz still on medical leave, Young Ninjas AWPer Love "phzy" Smidebrant has once again been called to stand-in on the main roster. They have shown rocky form as recently as the BLAST Spring Groups, where despite defeating Na'Vi in a 2-1 series, they ultimately failed to qualify for the Spring Finals.
With dev1ce on leave, Patrick "es3tag" Hansen stands as the only Dane among an all-Swedish active roster. We were able to reach es3tag for comment on his time with the team since joining in November:
Josh: You've been on the NIP roster for a few months now. How comfortable do you feel in your role on the team, and playing under the NIP organization?
es3tag: I would definitely say that compared to the beginning, I feel a lot more comfortable now in a lot of different ways. Everything is a lot easier now for me, whereas I had to think about my every move and how I was gonna convey it previously, it's just way more natural now – at least, all the in-game stuff is super easy. So, I would say compared to beginning, I'm probably excelling like 300% extra.
Thus far, shaky form has followed the Ninjas in Pyjamas into Katowice. The team defeated hometown favorites Wisla Krakow in the opening round, but fell to the Copenhagen Flames in a swift 2-0 series afterwards. They will play either MIBR or Movistar Riders in their next game, with both elimination and a spot in the group stage on the line.