Very few players can claim notable career achievements across Counter-Strike 1.6, Source and Global Offensive, but many veterans have accomplished greatness in two of those games or are masters of one. As a result, it is impossible to call a single player the ‘Greatest Of All Time,’ but there are a handful of players that can certainly make a claim to the title based on their achievements.
Kenny “kennyS” Schrub is one of those players in Global Offensive, but this statement also poses a question. How do we define a Counter Strike GOAT?
Beyond winning trophies, exceptional mechanical talent, and an established name in the game, a ‘GOAT’ would need to possess a certain 'je ne sais quoi'. Some immensely skilled players have not claimed the biggest trophies in the game and some players have been on the best team in the world but weren't the star player on the roster.
With his debut on Source, kennyS has been winning CS tournaments since the age of eleven. kennyS then climbed from Mumble community teams to VeryGames after the switch to GO when he was sixteen.
His time on Titan is generally considered "vintage" kennyS. Before the ‘AWP nerf’, kennyS regularly carried his squad with insane performances no one else could deliver. Infamous for his quick reactions and downright nasty flicks, kennyS was the player you didn’t want staring down the barrel at you on the other side of the map.
Having played on the most notable French organizations, LDLC, Titan and EnVyUs, kennyS was naturally picked up by G2 when they formed the ‘French super team’ and has remained there ever since, alongside Richard “shox” Papillon.
Starting in 2012, kennyS was the undisputed ‘Sniper de l’année’ every year in VaKarM.net’s annual awards for the French scene. A tough 2018 saw Mathieu “ZywOo” Herbaut, France’s promised prodigy, take the award instead, and in a double blow, Kenny was absent in HLTV.org’s top twenty list for the first time in GO that year too.
Despite G2’s struggles, kennyS bounced back in 2019, showing flashes of the past where Kenny was king of the server. At only 24, he has a long time yet before considering factors like retirement, giving him more time at the top of Counter Strike.
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A victory at a major is often seen as the mark of a legendary player, with teams securing their eras through the Valve-sponsored tournaments and running the gauntlet against the best teams from around the world.
There have been fourteen CS:GO majors and ten organizations who have lifted such a trophy, with Swedes, Danes and Frenchmen making up the bulk of winners. While majors are the pinnacle when they come around, the average CS calendar is stacked full of equally important tournaments where the biggest and the best teams clash.
Ladislav “GuardiaN” Kovács has been in a major finals twice, on Na’Vi and FaZe respectively, and both ended in defeat. With no Major title yet and FaZe being "the org on which he will end his career," time is running out. Yet this does not dampen the legacy of one of the greatest AWPers and players in the game.
kennyS has attended every major except DreamHack Winter 2014, when the infamous French VAC bans struck his teammate Hovik “KQLY” Tovmassian, disqualifying Titan from the event, leaving shox as the only French player to attend every single major as a result.
Having won DreamHack Cluj-Napoca with Team EnVyUs, kennyS also won the MVP medal for the event. With nine other MVPs under his belt, Kenny sits in joint second place with Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund, as Nicolai “device” Reedtz holds thirteen in the top spot. GTR earned all of his medals from 2012 to 2014 at the time where NiP were the top team in the scene, while device earned seven of his total haul in 2018 during Astralis’ era of total domination. kennyS has earned medals throughout his career, at times where his teams were challenging for the number one spot, and also when his team was competing but struggling to claim trophies in the face of other strong teams.
In the French scene, there are many big names and personalities, but only a small number have reached truly great heights. With his versatility and prowess, shox claimed four MVP medals and a major title between 2014 and 2015. However, in recent years, the burden of IGLing on a turbulent roster has dropped his individual.
The Kingmaker, Nathan “NBK” Schmitt is one of three players who played for the two French rosters to win majors so far. While not a flashy star player, NBK has been a solid pillar for the French scene in CS:GO, filling the gaps and being a crucial factor in the frequent scene shuffles. Also holding four MVP medals, NBK is perhaps underrated as a team player. Every French team he joins finds success, but NBK does not and has not consistently needed to have the same game-changing sway that kenny or shox possess.
When it comes to looking at the entire history of GO, kennyS outshines any other French candidate and has shone when performing against the rest of the world. Olof “olofmeister” Kjabjer, who is also generally considered one of the GOATs of GO, once told Aftonbladet Esport, "I’ve never been scared of anybody in CS:GO, but I’m scared of kennyS."
While 1.6 and Source have their own GOATs etched into the history books, kennyS is undeniably in the running with most of the race yet to be run for Global Offensive.