So Bulldog, what were you doing before professional Dota?
Studying. After I was done with that, I was doing nothing for a year, just playing video games, living life. That’s when I found a team in Dota 2.
Where did you get the name AdmiralBulldog?
I used to use Bulldog as nickname since I like those dogs, but decided to add something since Bulldog is always taken in every game. So, I added admiral since the game I was playing at that time was Battlefield 3.
Many know you as the “pub star” who was found by Dendi and became one of the best players in the world. What was that journey actually like?
Well it still feels kinda unreal. I was playing pubs and was being placed with Dendi. We played few games by random and then he added me to his friends list. We played a few games together then he asked if I could stand in for Na’Vi. That’s how it all started. Pretty crazy.
Dota obviously takes up all of your time between scrims, matches, and LANs. How do you balance your personal life around playing DOTA professionally?
I don’t have much of a personal life ^^. I just play days. However, after TI3 I got 2 puppies so they take up quite a lot of my time, and when I have to go to a LAN my family takes care of them.
Speaking of your family, how do they feel about you being a pro gamer? Did they come to watch you at the International?
They are very supportive and usually watch every game I play and follow the tournaments I play in. They did not however come to watch at the International, but maybe next time ^^.
Let’s talk a bit about Alliance as a whole. What do you do to get ready for a game? Does it differ depending on whether it is a best of one, best of three, or best of 5?
When it’s online we generally start with some practice game before. Before LAN games we just talk about our opponent and how to pick against them.
What are the inner-workings like in Alliance? It is well-known that you guys have great teamwork, but what happens when things go haywire, and arguments begin to spark?
We don’t really have any serious arguments. When we disagree with things we just discuss it. We are from Sweden, very civilized people here. Kappa.
How does having Loda draft change the team dynamic?
It’s nice to have some changes. Loda has some great ideas and some awful ones :). Not much has changed to be honest, we just try out more things which is good.
How did the long period of rest after TI3 affect your team? Was it a necessary time off?
I think everyone needs some vacation, including gamers. Coming in with a fresh mind is always good.
What do you have to say to people that talk about your team hating Na’Vi, and the rivalry that people have created around your teams?
There is no hate between Alliance and Na’Vi players, we are all good friends. Some people might say otherwise to build more hype, I don’t know.
Who is your favorite professional team to play against? What makes playing against them so fun for you?
Probably Na’Vi. The games against them are always very hyped which makes it more fun to play. The games are pretty good as well.
Transitioning a bit to your personal playstyle, a lot of people want to know: what’s the next hero you’re going to bring into the offlane?
I’m bringing back Lone Druid.
What are your thoughts on the state of Lone Druid in the current meta?
With the recent buff making his entangle not an orb anymore, which is a change I actually suggested to icefrog, maelstrom is now viable. The problem with Lone Druid has always been that he only had one item build (radiance) which was easily abused by the enemy by either pushing or picking a fighting line up which didn’t give you time to get the radiance. If they do that now, you can build maelstrom and fight back.
Which hero would you like to see more of in competitive play (whether in Captain’s Mode already or not)?
Who do you think is the strongest offlane hero in 6.80?
Looking at the big pictures there is a lot of good heroes, but I would say Furion.
What are the three most important pieces of advice you can give to someone who is looking to find a position as offlaner in a team?
1. Practice extra hard to get noticed.
2. Find dedicated players and make a team to play in smaller tournaments.
3. Pray to jeebus
Everyone knows you as AdmiralBulldog, one of the best offlaners in the world, but what are you like outside of Dota? Let’s get to some personal questions: who is your best friend on Alliance?
I would say s4. We usually share room when we travel, and I like watching him sleep.
How rarely does EGM actually smile?
He smiles more than you think, but he wants people to think he’s a bad boy. For the girls of course.
If you could make a best of the best team, which 5 players would be in it?
Well obviously I would wanna be in it as offlane. Not counting Alliance players (I wouldn’t pick them anyway) Kappa:
Mid – Dendi. No team can be the best team without Dendi.
Chuan and Puppey supports – great people in and outside the game. I would like to have an eating contest with Chuan at every LAN event.
Carry – Some chinese player. They are good at hitting creeps.
You’ve become one of the best and most recognized players in the world. Your team won TI3 and Dreamhack in the same year, and there is certainly no sign of your stopping any time soon. Out of everything, what is the best part about doing what you do?
Doing what I love for a living.
Bulldog, thank you so much for taking the time to sit down with me. Do you have any shout outs?
Shoutout to our sponsors HyperX, Monster, XMG, and Razer. Also to all the fans supporting us.
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Thanks to dota2.ru for the feature image of AdmiralBulldog