The American professional basketball player Jeremy Lin, who is also the honorary captain of VGJ.Thunder and VGJ. Storm was this past week with his Dota 2 teams in China at the Supermajor and he’s been kind to find time for a short press conference where he answered the questions that the Chinese media present at the event fired at him.
Q: What are the similarities and differences between basketball and Dota2 to you?
I feel like the difference is that you can play Dota2 anytime, but you need to find another 9 people to play basketball. That’s also the reason why I think esports industry has the potential to become bigger, because as long as you are online, you can compete with others anytime anywhere.
Q: What does Dota2 mean to you?
Apart from basketball, my brothers and I really love to play Dota 2. I never play Dota2 alone, I only play it with my brothers, cousins, friends or my trainer. To me, Dota2 is like a bridge that connects me with my friends and family. We talk about Dota2 when we eat, if we had a rough time we’ll just play Dota2 together and forget all those unpleasant things. My little brother lives in Taiwan, I live in New York and my older brother lives in Los Angeles but we still play Dota2 together.
Q: As a professional basketball player, what do you think are the main differences between traditional sports and esports? Can esports use the business model of traditional sports?
I think the biggest difference exists in the contracts. I hope esports players can get a long-term contract and make money even though they don’t manage to win a Major or The International. I’ve never claimed any championship but I still have a decent salary to support my family and I don’t have to worry about my life every day. On top of that, having players stay in the team for a long period of time will help to build the team’s brand. So yeah I think there’s plenty esports can learn from traditional sports.
Q: VGJ.T has secured their direct invite for TI8 and VGJ.S is also doing better and better. Are you satisfied with their performance so far?
I am actually, I’m pretty satisfied with their performance but they think there’s still huge room for improvement. VGJ.T hasn’t been in their best form lately, but I think a ticket to TI is always an opportunity. Once you are at TI anything could happen, just like anything could happen in the NBA playoffs.
VGJ.S has improved a lot comparing to where they were at the start of this season. They didn’t perform to their best at the Supermajor, but characters and ideas of the players make me believe that this team has a lot of potential.
Q: Are you the best Dota2 player in NBA?
Yeah, probably. Not that I’m really good, it’s just there aren’t that many people who play Dota2 in NBA.
Q: NBA 2K19 will be released soon, how high do you expect your attributes will be in the game?
I’ve never played it, I already play way too much basketball in my daily life so I’m not going to play a simulator. Dota2 is the only computer game I play. Maybe I’ll try it if all of my brothers and friends switch to that game.
Q: Most of the Chinese professional Dota2 players are relatively young and sometimes they fail to regain their form after experiencing tough periods. As a professional athlete, what suggestions can you give them?
I’ve been in the similar situation myself, my first year in Golden State Warriors was a disaster and I think the answer to that is just more experience. For example, those great basketball players wouldn’t get affected too much even if they had a rough first quarter, because they have faith in themselves. Comparing to them, young players have less steady performance. How did Liquid and Virtus.pro make it to the grand final? I watched the PSG.LGD – VP series today and I feel like VP always stick to their own plan no matter if they are winning or losing. They don’t tilt or get nervous, they just play their own game.