spoke with Potter, the head coach of Evil Geniuses in VCT Americas, just days before the start of Stage 2.

Evil Geniuses is a divisive organization among the fans, but their VALORANT coach Christine "Potter" Chi is easily a favorite. A multiple coach of the year award winner, she led the 2023 roster to a Champions trophy and looks to do the same in 2024.

Of course, she'll need to prep them for Stage 2. So, we spoke with her just prior to the second half of the year kicking off. Potter gave us some insight into practicing with the new Agent tweaks, not making roster moves, and how tough this split will be for everyone.

Potter discusses EG's approach to Duelist changes and the hard work that can take them to Champions 2024

(Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)
(Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)

"It wasn’t enough to make the playoffs, but the team ended Stage 1 with some huge victories. With it being a couple of months since the wins over NRG and Sentinels, do you feel the team is still carrying that momentum?"

Potter: "That's tough to say. You know, there's a lot of things that we've talked about as a team. I'll say short answer, yeah, for sure, we ended the season strong. Definitely, that helped us in preparation for the last two months, as far as confidence levels go.

"But so much has changed, right? The meta has changed, Agent changes, new players on new teams. So, a lot of things have definitely shifted over the last two months, but practice has been going really great. I think we have definitely improved from split one, but I think every team coming into split two will be feeling the same way."

"We'll get into all of the changes coming up. Starting with multiple teams making some changes, whether players or coaches. How important was it to keep all of the pieces in place for EG heading into Stage 2?"

Potter: "It was very important. Split one was a lot of the small kind of tedious work that we have to put in as a team to set the groundwork and set the foundation. All of that was done during split one. So, it would not have made sense to restart all of that over again coming into split two for us in our situation. Last year, we did have to do something like that.

"But you know, every situation is different. Thankfully for us, that was not the situation we were in. I'm very satisfied with all the players and teammates we have. And like I said, our confidence just keeps building and building. So, yeah, everything is kind of falling into place for us, at least for the prep going into split two."

(Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)
(Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)

"You don’t have to go into detail if you obviously can’t, but with the new map pool and Agent changes, can we expect anything wild out of the team?"

Potter: "I think so. One of the benefits of my coaching style and my system is that we can have the luxury of slotting in multiple Agents. And flexibility is something that I put a lot of emphasis on when building this roster. So, all of my players are very capable of flexing whatever Agents that we need.

"We've been messing around a little bit here and there with all the different Agents. Well, mainly Duelists. I don't want to give away too much, but it's very exciting. I think as we go on over the next two weeks, after split two starts, we're going to probably see three or four Duelists that are all comparable with each other.

"And that's kind of the first time that this has been the case in VALORANT. So, a lot of teams are going to have to make some tough choices, luxury choices, I would say, because the trade offs are so obvious, and at this point, these four Duelists that I'm talking about are so good with what they bring to the table.

"You have to make a choice as a team for that trade off. So, I think VALORANT is in another very interesting place, and for us, at least on EG, it's very exciting at the moment. Especially with a player like Jawgemo, who is having a lot of fun with these changes. So yeah, that was such a long answer, but yes, you can expect EG to mess around with some of these changes."

"As the coach then, how much harder do you have to work to see if it is worthwhile implementing something new to the team, or even having to come up with new ways to counter others?"

Potter: "It's definitely a lot of work. A lot of work. Outside of practice, because my job, basically every single day, is just making my players' lives easier, right? So, as soon as these changes came through, it's been a lot of theory crafting.

"A lot of coming to practice with more concrete plans and ideas, so that we can have more intent for that day, because these changes are crazy. But how Jawgemo would play, let's just say Iso in ranked, is going to be very different than how he would want to approach it with the team."

(Photo by Reece Martinez/Riot Games)
(Photo by Reece Martinez/Riot Games)

"Well, you’ll finally take on the last of your former players in the coming weeks. You’ve got c0m on LEV and Boostio on 100T. Are you excited to take them on, back to back?"

Potter: "I am. I'm very excited to take them on. Those guys. I'm pretty sure I'm going to know them for the rest of my life. And we built something really special last year. It's a lasting relationship, so I'm excited to form a different kind of rivalry. We haven't really competed against each other. Yes, I'm very excited."

"And the rest of the field starts with LOUD, then FURIA, and MIBR. Thoughts on those opponents?"

Potter: "I've always had so much respect for LOUD. It's our first matchup coming into split two, and it's a very important one for us. Just for kind of setting the tone. And I'm excited to see what Saadhak brings to the table. As far as I know, this guy has been playing nothing but Neon in ranked.

"So, I'm sure there's a lot of curveballs that LOUD can throw at us, especially with how they approached split one. With the Phoenix and the six flashes across the board, it's going to be interesting. I think this first match, EG vs. LOUD is probably the most important one, I would say for us, in split two."

(Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)
(Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Riot Games)

"Last up for you, with Stage 2 here and Champions 2024 on the horizon. How likely is it that we see a repeat from Evil Geniuses?"

Potter: "It's very likely! <laughs> Uh, no, it's tough. I wouldn't say it's likely at all. I'm hopeful. I'm hopeful, and I'm confident in all the work that we've put in. There's just so many similarities with how my players are feeling, with our confidence, just building up week by week.

"And coming into split two, the similarities, you can't deny them. But I do think it's going to be challenging. Americas is so stacked. I mean, if you just look at the top nine teams, eight teams, they're all just neck and neck."

And if you have eight teams that can just beat each other on any given day, it is competitive as hell. So yes, I see us at Champs. That's definitely the North Star, but it's going to be an extremely challenging season."

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