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Beastcoast Captain Phozzo: "It all changes here"

With the North American League fast approaching, SiegeGG spoke with Phozzo about the team's journey.

Beastcoast Captain Phozzo: "It all changes here"

2020 was full of emotion for beastcoast’s Rainbow Six Siege team. Despite being the only team with org backing in Stage 1 of North American Challenger League, they were washed away early in groups, but dodged relegations when PogChamp disbanded due to roster moves.

A roster move of their own brought higher tides for the American R6 team, pushing them to silver at both the Stage 2 grand-final and the Six Invitational 2021 qualifiers

Facing another year of NACL, the team rushed in to fill the hole left behind by Tempo Storm’s departure from Siege esports. With an NAL license in hand, beastcoast is gearing up to face North America’s finest in the Las Vegas LAN league.

Despite the choppy waters beastcoast faced at times last year, Joseph “Phozzo'' Eisenmann and his team are ready for the next step in their journey. 

Congratulations on making the North American League and thank you for taking the time to talk with us. Let’s run it back to last summer, where you’re the only squad heading into NA Challenger League with an organisation behind you. How did the beastcoast signing come about?

I did my due diligence to find us an organisation and remembered beastcoast was in Challenger League with the old roster before [transferring them to] Cloud 9. We provided a resume and had a couple meetings. They wanted to get to know us and what we wanted and things just perfectly aligned.

By the start of Stage 1, you were the only team with organisation backing in Challenger League. What do you think beastcoast saw in your team that made them pick you over anyone else in NACL. 

Personally, I think it was our brand images. We [weren’t] a well known team but I think we [had] a pretty good following. [Charlie “Rooty” Tran, Anthony “AnthonyMGS” Gomez and Jason “Sippin” Mahabir] have been together since they were underaged. They picked me up and they picked up [Jason “Ghxst” Luu], the two older guys. I guess [beastcoast] just saw a lot in us.  

Not a lot of teams can find an organisation. A lot of teams end up falling short or just don’t try at all. We just put ourselves out there and hoped for the best.

Did beastcoast have any big expectations for you and the rest of the team heading into Challenger League?

They expected us to do our best and be professional. They knew we were one of the better teams and then Stage 1 came around and we got seventh and were facing relegations. We really weren’t pressured because we knew the teams were going to make the closed qualifiers weren’t better than us.

Then everything happened with PogChamp disbanding so we got blessed a little bit. For Stage Two we picked up Ghxst over Jaay and things just got a lot better. We got second place and [the organisation] was pretty happy. They weren’t pressuring us with anything and were supportive.

What was it about Ghxst that made you think he was the player to help turn things around for beastcoast in Stage 2. 

He was always a really good fragger on PogChamp, he stood out to us the most. We had a couple options other than him but they didn’t fit too well. Ghxst fit our team chemistry well, we got along with him right off the bat.

Did anything else change up between Stage 1 and Stage 2 that helped make the seventh to second run to the Stage 2 final?

I think our roles changed a little bit and the way we conducted ourselves for practice changed a lot too. We were more productive and more critical when we were scrimming. We weren’t just scrimming to scrim, we had goals set all the time.

How did it feel to lose the Stage 2 finals to Rent Free and lose the last chance at the time to make the NAL?

It was disheartening that we lost and didn’t make relegations but we really weren’t in that bad of a spot. We were still getting backing from beastcoast, we were still in Challenger League and we would have another really good shot to make [NAL] the next season. It sucked for the first couple days and then we got over it and got back to work.

Tell me about the process of beastcoast getting Tempo Storm’s league license from your perspective?

When it first happened we said to the organisation; ‘Hey, you could maybe jump on this and see what happens. Worst thing [Ubi] could say is no.’ We didn’t hear anything more about it for a little while. Invite qualifiers come around and after the finals, we were told that we had the [NAL] spot from Tempo Storm. We didn’t make the Invitational, we were so close, but we got a little bit of a present after I guess.

How did the team react to the news that beastcoast had an NAL spot?

It was like Christmas Day, we were all freaking out. We were excited to just start working towards [NAL] because Ghxst has been there before while [Sippin,Rooty and Anthony] have been working towards this their whole careers and they finally got it.

You ended up making the top flight with Obey Alliance back in Season 10 of Challenger League but were dropped before you could play a pro match. How good does it feel now to have finally made it to Tier 1 Siege? 

Making it the more natural way then how we did now, it feels like you’re on cloud nine and nothing can stop you. Then you get dropped two weeks later [after] telling everyone you signed this big contract.

 It definitely hurt but I got over it pretty quick. I thought about quitting and going to Valorant but [thought] ‘Nah, that’s not it for me.’ Then I found my way here so I guess it all works out in the end.” 

How have you and the team been preparing heading into the NAL season both mentally and in terms of strategy?

We have an analyst that’s working behind the scenes for our strategies. We’re going to start dry-running here soon to give us a little bit of an edge. We’re one of the very few teams who haven’t made a [roster change] so we’re not too far behind in terms of chemistry, readiness and seeing how everyone works when it comes to putting your head down and grinding hard for two weeks. 

The team environment in person really hasn’t changed, it’s the same as we are online. It’s very chill. I think I’m more of the hyper side of the team. I get very rowdy and loud, everyone else is chill for the most part but they have their moments. It’s good vibes all the time.

Teams have been making a lot of noise this offseason with some earthshaking roster moves. Was there any thoughts about making a change before the team went to Las Vegas?

I don’t think we ever talked about it and it was never really brought up. We’re happy with what we have now and I think we’ll do really well. There was never any doubt or [thought of] picking up someone with LAN experience. We were one of the very few teams that were secure other than the obvious two; TSM and SSG. 

So which team do you think came out on top of the North American shuffle then?

Darkzero for sure. Them picking up Nick (njr) is a huge upgrade. I don’t know how the roles are going to work but I’m sure they’ll figure that out. He’s up-and-coming, he’s really good.

So does beastcoast have any plans for content once everyone is settled in to the team house in Las Vegas?

We’ve got a lot of plans coming up. Hopefully COVID-19 doesn’t impact it but it’ll be a lot of fun. Content is king. If you have content pumping out weekly or every two weeks, it can even be the smallest thing, I think it’ll change a lot for an org and team. People love seeing content so why don’t you give it to them. I don’t think a lot of teams are doing what we have in mind so it’ll be pretty cool.

What’s your prediction for where the team will end up in the standings for this year? 

Ego aside, I would say top five. Anything can happen, I think this [season] will be really fun to watch with the teams that are here because I think it’s a very balanced pool of talent now. It’s not really top four heavy anymore, it all changes here.”

To wrap things up, is there anything you’d like to say to both beastcoast fans and fans of North American Rainbow Six heading into your first season in the NAL. 

To the dedicated beastcoast fans, thanks for following us, we really do appreciate it. Stay tuned for more content and cool things that we could do. Anybody that’s not a fan of us, I hope you’d like to start following us, thanks for watching the Rainbow Six pro [scene]. Hopefully it’s what you guys expect it to be and hopefully it’s back to what it was.

SiegeGG would like to say thank you again to Joseph “Phozzo'' Eisenmann for taking the time to speak with us.

Phozzo and beastcoast will help kick off the North American League in Las Vegas on March 24th.

Stay tuned to SiegeGG for more exclusive interviews, analysis and updates from the Rainbow Six pro scene.

[This interview has been edited for clarity and brevity]