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Oxygen Esports secure first in NAL Stage One with victory over beastcoast




Starting the final playday of the NAL before the Six Invitational 2021, Oxygen’s Rainbow Six Siege team were in second.

They needed a little bit of help, but after the NAL dust settled, they finished in the first place in terms of points. Earlier in the playday, Mirage upset the previous No. 1 team, the Soniqs, with a stunning 7-2 victory on Clubhouse. Had the Soniqs won, they’d secure the No. 1 spot.

Oxygen’s subsequent 7-4 victory on Chalet over beastcoast pumped the team to 17 points, securing their first place finish.

Oxygen are a mix of veterans, namely Davide “FoxA” Bucci and Gabriel “LaXInG” Mirelez, and young talent like Léo “Kyno” Figueiredo. LaXInG led the way on Chalet, and has been one of NA’s dominant players for some time, but is far from the only star player on the team.

Kyno has been excellent on the season, notching a +19 in K/D plus-minus. The rookie has impressed this season, chalking up several match MVP honors alongside excelling at the unseen portions of being a support: opening walls, droning, and helping the team.

Oxygen held a 6-2 record on the season, with their only losses coming to Soniqs and Disrupt.

Now, Oxygen will take their talents to the Six Invitational, slated to be held in Paris. Oxygen’s roster has long been criticized for their lack of stability and a perceived lack of strategy. But with newcomers Kyno and Evan “Yoggah” Nelson, and vets FoxA, LaXInG, and Franklyn “VertCL” Andres Cordero (who leads NA in KOST percent), Oxygen are looking downright scary heading into R6‘s biggest tournament.

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Stand-in hades stars as ENCE win LOOT.BET Season 9




ENCE won LOOT.BET Season 9 with a 2-0 victory over Fiend in the grand final following one-sided scorelines on Overpass (16-6) and Train (16-6). The international squad needed just three series wins to claim the title after being invited directly to the quarter-finals, brushing aside SKADE and Dignitas in the previous rounds.

ENCE won LOOT.BET S9 with a stand-in

ENCE were left without their veteran AWPer Aleksi “⁠allu⁠” Jalli as the team headed into the tournament, with the 28-year-old revealing on Wednesday that he was taking a leave of absence due to personal reasons. The international team looked to former Wisla Krakow AWPer Olek “⁠hades⁠” Miskiewicz to fill the gap temporarily, and the young Pole delivered with an outstanding 1.34 rating (seven maps) on the way to the team’s first-place finish.

The LOOT.BET success comes as a much-needed boost for ENCE, who have struggled for form in the last month, bombing out of the Flashpoint 3 Closed Qualifier in 13th-16th place and falling short in the IEM Summer qualification. The team’s next tournament is the $100,000 Elisa Invitational Summer, which is scheduled to run from June 3 through July 3. It is still unclear what ENCE‘s lineup will look like moving forward, although allu emphasised that he wants to be back “sooner, rather than later.”

ENCE‘s roster for LOOT.BET Season 9 was:

Denmark Marco “⁠Snappi⁠” Pfeiffer
Finland Joonas “⁠doto⁠” Forss
Israel Lotan “⁠Spinx⁠” Giladi
Poland Paweł “⁠dycha⁠” Dycha
Poland Olek “⁠hades⁠” Miskiewicz (stand-in)

Finland Eetu “⁠sAw⁠” Saha (coach)

LOOT.BET Season 9 final standings:

1. Europe ENCE – $25,000
2. Bulgaria Fiend – $12,500
3-4. Russia Entropiq – $3,750
3-4. Sweden Dignitas – $3,750
5-8. Bulgaria SKADE – $1,250
5-8. Sweden Young Ninjas $1,250
5-8. United Kingdom Endpoint $1,250
5-8. Russia forZe $1,250
9-12. Denmark Copenhagen Flames
9-12. France LDLC
9-12. Poland Anonymo
9-12. Europe Movistar Riders
13-15. Denmark Lyngby Vikings
13-15. Poland PACT
13-15. Ukraine NAVI Junior
16-18. Portugal OFFSET
16-18. Turkey Sangal
16-18. Poland Izako Boars
19-20. Sweden Lilmix
19-20. Portugal eXploit

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Sources: Karmine Corp finalizes 6-month deal with top laner Cabochard to replace Adam




LFL and European Masters reigning champion Karmine Corp finalized a 6-month deal with ex-LEC toplaner Lucas “Cabochard” Simon-Meslet to replace Adam Maanane after his departure from KCorp was confirmed a few days ago according to sources close to Dot Esports.

KCorp concluded a deal with the 24-year-old French top laner a few days ago, while former top laner Adam is heading to the LEC as the new starting toplaner for FNATIC, according to a Dot Esports report published on May 11th. At the moment, Cabochard will be KCorp’s toplaner for just the LFL Summer Split and the Summer European Masters, as his contract will expire next November, sources said.

After five years on Team Vitality, the French LEC team announced last December that Cabochard would not continue on the starting roster for the LEC 2021 spring split. He was substituted by Mathias “Szygenda” Jensen.

Cabochard has been out of competition these past months, and now he will be with KCorp–currently considered the best team outside the LEC–to play in the LFL and the next European Masters.

This is expected to be the only change to the KCorp line up heading into this upcoming Split. Thus, the final roster would be Cabochard, Jakub “Cinkrof” Rokicki, Lucas “Saken” Fayard, Matthew Charles “xMatty” Coombs and Raphaël “Targamas” Crabbé.

Dot Esports reached out to Karmine Corp, but the French team kindly declined to comment about this move.

Make sure to follow us on YouTube for more esports news and analysis.

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Excel parts ways with Czekolad, Tore




Excel Esports is making changes to its League of Legends roster ahead of the next split.

The organization confirmed the departure of mid laner Paweł “Czekolad” Szczepanik and support Tore Hoel Eilertsen today.

“We will always be grateful for the passion and skills they have both brought to the team,” Excel head coach Joey “YoungBuck” Steltenpool said in a statement on social media. “Roster changes are never easy, however, we have to look at ways to improve our team’s synergy and performance.”

The team attempted to replace Czekolad and Tore in the middle of the 2021 LEC Spring Split and planned to introduce players from their academy roster, but according to sources close to Dot Esports, they were prohibited from following through with their actions. The players were even sent home before Excel realized they had made a mistake.

“Players who played in thirteen or more LEC Matches are ineligible to participate in any ERL Regular Season, Playoffs and the EM event for the current Split,” it says in the LEC rulebook. 

The team have held “extensive tryouts” during the off-season and are “confident” they have found a roster that will help them achieve their “Summer Split ambitions,” according to a statement today.

Excel has finalized a deal to sign Misfits Gaming support Petr “denyk” Haramach and former Astralis mid laner Erlend “Nukeduck” Våtevik for the 2021 LEC Summer Split, sources told Dot Esports on May 10

Make sure to follow us on YouTube for more esports news and analysis.

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“Like signing Cristiano Ronaldo”: NIP on landing device and his impact inside and outside of the game




Hampus “⁠hampus⁠” Poser could hardly believe what he was hearing.

Imagine thinking that your team, who have struggled to break into the elite ranks of Counter-Strike, suddenly have the opportunity to sign one of the greatest and most storied players in the history of the franchise. What’s more, it is the player himself who is pushing for the move to happen.

When he was told that Nicolai “⁠device⁠” Reedtz was coming, hampus couldn’t help but feel that it was almost too good to be true.

“I was really shocked,” hampus told “Signing device is like signing Cristiano Ronaldo. And of course, if you have the possibility to get device on your team… Any team should do it, maybe except NAVI and Vitality because they have s1mple and ZywOo.

“It was such a big shock, even that he wanted to come to NIP. Of course, it was sad to see nawwk go, but as I said: device, Cristiano Ronaldo… Not more to say about this.”

device will make his NIP debut later on Friday (Photo by Patrick Strack/NIP)

The Counter-Strike scene was left just as dumbfounded on April 23, when NIP unveiled device as their new player on a permanent transfer from Astralis. The symbolism of the moment was inescapable: His departure brought an end to the lineup that had set a new standard for excellence, not only in Counter-Strike but in all of esports, and saw him embark on a new journey without the familiar presences of Peter “⁠dupreeh⁠” Rasmussen and Andreas “⁠Xyp9x⁠” Højsleth — his teammates since 2013 — at his side.

device‘s signing was a major coup for the NIP organisation. The Danish player left a team that was ranked No.2 in the world at the time for one that was No.11 and whose last trophy came in November 2017. Between then and his transfer to NIP, device won 20 titles, including three Major crowns, and 13 MVP medals.

This is not how things are supposed to be: The elite sides are expected to cherry-pick players from teams below them — not the other way around.

device became enamoured with the thought of playing for a team based in Stockholm, where he lives with his girlfriend, but he was also attracted by NIP’s performance culture and the possibility of becoming the cornerstone of the organisation’s project. Over the previous 18 months, NIP had begun to carve a new identity in an attempt to break with the past and bury the ghosts of the legendary 87-0 squad. A new office was built in Stockholm, the organisation’s structure was boosted by key hires, including ex-Olympic rower David McGowan as a performance coach, and a company rebrand was announced with a new logo design and a fresh colour scheme.

All that was needed now was a marquee player to top it off.

“The first thing that comes to mind is that you’re humbled, right?,” NIP Chief Operating Officer (COO) Jonas Gundersen said about landing device. “You’re humbled by it, by the fact that a player of his caliber is interested in coming to us.

“It’s been a long rebuilding process, it feels like, and transforming the whole culture of such an old iconic team is not an easy feat. It shows that all the work that everyone has been doing on a daily basis, from the organisation to the performance staff, has provided a foundation and a home for players of his caliber.

“That’s something that just humbles you and makes you proud at the same time. I think it underlines that we are heading in the right direction.”

It would have been impossible to imagine a better player than device to fix one of NIP’s biggest weaknesses for years: The AWP role. Tim “⁠nawwk⁠” Jonasson showed flashes of brilliance during his time with the team, but his lack of consistency — as evidenced by his low percentage of maps with above-average ratings (55.9%) — was troubling. He himself admitted that he couldn’t argue with the decision to sign device.

NIP refuse to say whether the rumours suggesting that the organisation splashed out approximately $1 million on device are accurate. “Everything is relative in terms of value,” Gundersen said, adding that the organisation benefits from device’s presence not only inside the server but also outside of it as it attracts new fans and increases commercial opportunities. “A signing like device propels us back into relevance immediately because we’re the kind of the club that has a player like him. That means followers will come. It’s like, ‘What are you guys doing? I want to follow your journey’.

“We expect an increase in the level of ambition. Of course, there are other effects. Hopefully, major wins. We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for that. And also commercialization, bigger sponsorships, more merchandise sales, all those things. But more than anything, this is a testament to our ambition as a team that wants to win titles because that’s in our blood and in our DNA.

“We feel like we have the right players and the right structure behind them. Once you have a player like device, if you don’t win tournaments you need to constantly look at why you’re not doing it. Because we have all the pieces for it now.

“Pressure is a natural part of being on NIP, but it’s also our job to create a culture where players feel supported so that we work towards achieving our goals and dreams together in a healthy manner.”

NIP are still in the honeymoon phase as they are yet to play an official match with device. Without surprise, the early impressions on the server are very positive. “I think it’s been going really well,” hampus said. “I thought that communication was going to be a bit of a problem at the beginning, but he’s learning quickly and his Swedish is really good. He comes up with so much input on everything. His energy has surprised me a bit as well. I thought he was like this chill dude, but he’s pretty hype.” hampus also admitted that he came away impressed with how easy it was for the players to establish a strong relationship with the new member. “I thought that these guys who were the best all had a bit of an attitude, but he’s really down-to-earth and modest.”

NIP hope that device’s signing will take the team to new heights (Photo by Patrick Strack/NIP)

The arrival of a player with device’s résumé comes with sky-high expectations, which can be a burden for a young squad like NIP‘s, with an average age of just 21.7 years. Other than the Dane, only Fredrik “⁠REZ⁠” Sterner knows what it’s like to win a big international title.

Do the players feel more pressure than usual, now that they get on the server with device? “I don’t think so,” said hampus. “When you play, you forget that he’s the Major winner. We’re joking sometimes now. Our Facebook chat now is called ‘NIP + Major winner’. We’re just laughing about it. When you’re in the moment, you don’t really think that he’s done all those things. You’re only living in the moment and trying to win.”

Beyond his skills and experience, device also brings with him stability and strong tactical acumen. He has become sort of a secondary caller, providing input during freeze time and taking over when hampus is out of a round. This helps alleviate the burden on the former Gamerlegion player, who is the team’s permanent in-game leader again after he briefly relinquished calling duties to Erik “⁠ztr⁠” Gustafsson on Overpass and Nuke. “I don’t think my skill will be a problem,” hampus said when asked about the impact that being a permanent IGL will have on his numbers. “I think the maps I played the best on were the maps where I was already calling. I think I played pretty poorly individually on Overpass, and ztr was calling on that map. That’s also the reason why I switched back on that map, because I feel like I can be stronger as the caller now.”

Almost one month on from device’s grand unveiling, Counter-Strike fans will finally get to take a first look at the new NIP lineup this Friday, in Flashpoint 3. hampus believes that at least repeating the semi-final run from ESL Pro League is “a reasonable goal”, especially considering the upgrade in the AWP role, even though he warns that the Dane is still adjusting to his new reality and may not be quite himself out of the gate.

“There has been a lot of talk that device can only be good with Astralis or with these four teammates in Astralis,” hampus said. “At the beginning, he will have some small pressure, but we all know for sure how good he is.

“I think it will take him one or two games, and then he will just wreck everyone.”

It has been a case of “out with the old and in with the new” over in the NIP camp, where there have been changes on multiple levels to put in place the right structure to provide the organisation’s teams with the tools to succeed and be the best in their respective games. With the old culture ripped out, a new philosophy installed, and a franchise player who has won almost all there is to win now on the books, the Swedish team can once again be more than just a beloved underdog. Their fans now expect it to earn results and challenge for titles.

“I believe device will help us achieve consistency since he’s so consistent himself,” hampus said. “I think it will rub off on everyone else.

“I think some players were lacking some confidence, they were thinking more than just playing. They were thinking, ‘If I do this I might die’, and things like this. If we get our confidence up, focus on the game and just be in the game, I believe consistency will come.

“Now, it doesn’t matter if I die, he will kill three anyway.” (laughs)

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