- 1 EsportsBets: Hi James, congratulations on becoming GG.Bet’s latest ambassador. How excited are you about the partnership?
- 2 Given GG.Bet Esports is, of course, a betting site — do you bet yourself? If so, which tournaments caught your eye this year?
- 3 Though CS:GO is your game of choice, what did you think about this year’s Dota 2 The International?
- 4 And right now IEM Rio is taking place. What are your thoughts on the major so far?
- 5 We believe it’s your first time in Brazil. Tell us about your experience [so far].
- 6 GG.Bet is also partnering with Team Vitality — that’s super exciting, right?
- 7 7. What’s been your favorite moment so far with the Vitality guys?
James Banks, one of the most widely recognized personalities in the CSGO esports scene, signed as a brand ambassador with GG.Bet recently. This was yet another success in a long line of partnerships between GG.Bet and bold esports celebrities. This new collaboration is a clear signal of the growth that the esports betting brand is undergoing.
EsportsBets had the chance to speak with James about his new role as GG.Bet’s brand ambassador and his thoughts on the partnership.
EsportsBets: Hi James, congratulations on becoming GG.Bet’s latest ambassador. How excited are you about the partnership?
James Banks: Thank you very much. Honestly, this kind of partnership is perfect for me, I worked a lot with GG.Bet, when they were supporting the CS:GO Majors and the Dota Arlington Major, we got to make some fun content together. Now becoming an official ambassador, I will get the opportunity to create content all year round with their team!
GG.Bet is a partner who has shown how much they value esports as much as I do. From live broadcasts from the biggest venues, interviews with top esports figures, special reports and other shows that I have been planning are going to be possible with GG.Bet by my side. We are also looking to do joint projects with other GG.Bet ambassadors and prepare mind-blowing, but for now, secret activities for the fans.
Given GG.Bet Esports is, of course, a betting site — do you bet yourself? If so, which tournaments caught your eye this year?
I do not bet on anything esports-related myself, it isn’t professional to be a talent and be betting on things you have extra insight on. I have always been a big boxing fan and occasionally do some football [bets] for the Premier League, though. I consider betting to be a good addition to the game for those who like to watch sports or esports matches and brighten it up with real amusement.
Though CS:GO is your game of choice, what did you think about this year’s Dota 2 The International?
I really enjoy watching Dota, it was taking place while I was working on another event, but many of us were still keeping an eye on the Dota action each morning. I had the chance to meet the Tundra guys at a couple of events now, did a really cool interview with Sneyking as well, and learnt about his story and journey. I know how much TI means for him and the team, and after a pretty tough year with ups and downs, to see them win it was insane. Very happy for them!
And right now IEM Rio is taking place. What are your thoughts on the major so far?
This is the most open CS:GO Major in years. It feels like anyone can win it, and there is no clear favourite. Stockholm was always feeling like NAVI Major, Antwerp was always feeling like FaZe’s Major and in years before that, Astralis were dominant. Still, now, we got FURIA with a crowd buff, Cloud9 improving every game and sh1ro playing his best event ever. We got Vitality and FaZe eliminated, which is just insane… I am the NAVI mascot, and I do hope they will win their second Major, but even Cloud9 or FURIA got a chance for it…Rio has been incredible and 100% one of the best crowds I have ever been in, and this is before we get to the REAL arena.
We believe it’s your first time in Brazil. Tell us about your experience [so far].
Brazil is amazing. Great weather. Passionate people. Fans who are so nice and respectful. I did a crowd segment during a FURIA game where we were in the middle of it all, and they were super fun. I had a great time. I feed off moments like this, and I love the energy it gives me. The food has been incredible as well, haven’t tried the sea yet because the waves have been insane, and the lifeguards are warning people not to go in, but hopefully, I can try before I go.
I know everyone talked about the dangerous side, I guess for me, and because of where I grew up, I didn’t really think it would be as people say but we are also in a really nice area. There are bad places everywhere in the world. Any major city is going to have something bad about it. I would happily come back here for a holiday or more CS:GO events. Send me your invites, people!
GG.Bet is also partnering with Team Vitality — that’s super exciting, right?
Yeah, it was a nice surprise to see them with GG.Bet, I know all the guys from Vitality really well, and we got to have a great day of content with them upon my announcement.
You may have heard about the Vitality tour bus held by GG.Bet. I was there and have seen the faces of players and fans. We all talked like old friends, it was super special. Some fans even got some local Brazilian drinks for us to try, which was something you don’t get to do during live events. I like this kind of vibe.
At the fan fest, Team Vitality and GG.Bet arranged a cool site at The Olympic Park for fans to get their hands on exclusive Vitality merch, take some photos, play CS:GO and compete with other guests.
7. What’s been your favorite moment so far with the Vitality guys?
For sure, the signing session and tour bus. Some signing sessions can be just basic and boring, but GG.Bet and Vitality had the rock theme going on, and took them to the signing session on a Vitality and GG.Bet tour bus with their photos on gave shirts and stickers to the fans. This kind of thing is really important, especially for South American fans who don’t get as many events or chances to see some of their favourite players.