For segment number one of the new “Ask a Pro” series, we snagged Strongside and floated him a few questions from fans.

“Being the new member of Final Boss, is there any pressure for you as a player to live up to?”

Strongside: Well, being a member of Final Boss I definitely have something to live up to. Final Boss has an excellent record, and they’ve never placed below Top 2. If we didn’t get Top 2 it would be really disappointing. That’s why we’ve been practicing every day for the past few months, pretty much since Vegas was over. We’ve been making sure that we’re at the top of our game, bringing out new strategies and gaining that extra edge over every other team.

Of course there’s going to be lots of pressure. I usually take the pressure well. I actually kind of like the pressure, it gives me that boost to try that much harder just to prove something to all those people who are doubting me.

“Even though some of the pros post in forums, generally, it’s not often. Do you read the forums much, and if so, do the negative comments about you or your team ever ‘get’ to you?”

Strongside: I actually never read the forums that much, I’m usually practicing. My teammates always read the forums, and they’re up to date on them. They show me the doubters, and what people have to say about me sometimes. Sometimes it’s funny what people have to say, we get a little bit of a laugh out of it.

There was this one comment that we thought was hilarious. Something like, “Strongside doesn’t have the explosiveness.” We just got a crack out of that. My teammates make jokes about it while we’re practicing. If I don’t play too well, they’ll say “You didn’t have the explosiveness that time.”

The comments really don’t get to me that much. It’s good to have positive feedback from fans, but I never really pay attention to the negative ones.

How long did you have to practice before you finally became a pro? And, do you still practice just as long between tourneys?

Strongside: Initial practice was insane. I don’t know if many people know this, but I went to MLG Philly a couple years ago. It’s been kind of kept on the DL, but that was a really bad tournament for me. After that tournament, I’ve literally practiced every single day. I just wanted to be up at the top, be the best and play with the pros.

Every once and a while I’ll make a joke that you have to go through the “MLG All-Star Training.” Basically, that meant to play every single day, all night and all day long. I did it, and I think it helped me with my Halo knowledge. You learn what to do in different situations, knowing what your opponents are going to do. It helped me with my FFA the most.

FFA is all I would play. I wanted to play in the top of Free-For-All. I guess some people would consider it boring, but when you want to be the best, you do anything it takes to get up there. I did that, and it’s worked for me. Here I am now, and I’m really happy to be where I am.

I don’t practice as much as I did then between tournaments, but every once and a while I’ll pull an all-nighter. For the past few months, I’ve been practicing almost 12 hours every single day. I want to be at the top of my game, be there for my team and show them I have what it takes. Hopefully it all works out.

Check back to throughout the weekend for more Ask a Pro segments. If you want to submit questions to the series, make sure to visit our forums and post in this thread.

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