Ceb defends ATF following flak against his “toxic” behavior in new OG documentary
After the release of OG’s new documentary, ATF received some flak for his “toxic” behavior. Ceb addressed this issue in the latest MBS podcast.
OG recently dropped a Red Bull documentary, “The Return of Ceb” which has garnered more than 350,000 views in six days. This documentary showcased a behind-the-scenes look at Sébastien "Ceb" Debs’s abrupt return from retirement to stand in and play amongst the new-generation OG. The 1 hour and 30 minutes documentary played in detail the highs and lows of their journey and how they triumphed in the championship.
Throughout the documentary, there were a few interactions between OG’s then-offlaner, Ammar "ATF" Al-Assaf, and his teammates, which left a sour taste in the Dota 2 community. Some comments pointed out that ATF was "toxic" in the way he talked to his teammates. These comments went on Ceb’s radar and he came to the young player’s defense.
Ceb: "He's young. How was I when I was 16? I don't even want to remember."
In the latest Monkey Business Show (MBS) podcast, Ceb admits that ATF has a way of conveying his thoughts carelessly, and “it is to a fault at times”. But he highlighted that ATF was young and inexperienced, being only 16 years old at his first-ever big LAN event.
(Minute mark: 38:00)
I’ve seen comments saying he’s toxic and stuff. Actually, he isn’t. (N0tail: These moments, it’s quite the opposite.) He’s very, very genuine and authentic. Of course, he has no filter and maybe that’s to a fault at times. He’s young, how was I when I was 16? I don’t even want to remember actually.
On top of being young, he stated that the immense pressure in the environment overwhelmed ATF'S emotions. Ceb recalled that the young Jordanian is very passionate and would pull all-nighters with Ceb, N0tail, Chu, and Misha, to discuss drafts and strategies. He had shown deep passion and care for the game which makes him put more pressure on his shoulders.
(Minute mark: 38:32)
Being 16 in this high-pressure, intense, environment when this is what you care the most about..He cares so much and obviously he can’t control everything and he’s emotionally completely overwhelmed. It’s his first LAN, first Major, and in front of a crowd. He’s very competitive and he puts a lot of pressure on his shoulders.
Ceb also pointed out moments in the documentary where ATF is reacting to discussions emotionally and “putting his head in his hands”. There was a scene when he argued with then-pos 5, Misha, on the phone as they discussed draft picks.
(Minute mark: 39:12)
It’s just emotions right? There’s no bad intention, none of that. Quite the opposite, he has the best intention at heart and that’s how he thinks it should be conveyed at that moment.. It was a learning experience for him and he also changed throughout the tournament.
On the 'Warlock pick' conversation
A scene in the documentary filmed OG's discussion during a Group Stage match. The team discussed a possible position five pick for Ceb and considered Warlock. But ATF was quick to shut the idea down as he had no confidence in Ceb. During the podcast, Ceb stated that he didn't take it to the heart because he knew ATF had no bad intentions.
(Minute mark: 39:43)
Sometimes he thinks the best is to tell them “I don't think you’re good at Warlock”.. And sometimes he doesn't really realize what it implies, that it could hurt my confidence and he doesn't have the distance yet to see these things. And that's why I took it with a smile, because I knew he wasn’t trying to hurt me, quite the opposite really.
On ATF calling Ceb's pre-game talk a 'useless speech'
Another clip that caught the attention of the community was when ATF dismissed Ceb’s traditional pre-game speech and called it ‘useless’. It appears disrespectful to many but N0tail called it dark humor and they explained the story behind it. Ceb stated that sometimes, he would be the one to approach Ceb and ask if he was going to do his ‘useless speech’. To them, ATF calling it a ‘useless speech’ also helped the other players to embrace the cringe and listen.
(Minute mark: 41:25)
He knows it’s important and I think he’s also helping the other guys get through the shyness. The fact he says these things but goes with it anyways, it helps the others. Like ‘it’s cringe bro’ but it's a little bit of fun, let’s have it. Grandpa wants to talk so let’s hear him out.
OG and ATF parted ways in December 2022. While OG picked up, Russian offlaner, Dmitry "DM" Dorokhin, ATF joined another powerhouse, Nigma Galaxy. Both teams are currently competing in WEU DPC Division I.
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