These are the five most shocking roster moves that have happened in the history of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.
CSGO’s pro scene is in a state of constant transformation. Teams are always looking to add the missing piece that could bring them greater success. This leads to many shocking roster moves that might not make sense at first glance. These are the five roster moves that left the fans wondering why they happened, and why the teams involved thought it was a good idea.
NiKo departs from FaZe Clan
In the three years he spent on the roster, Nikola “NiKo” Kovac had become the personification of FaZe Clan. He was the star player and the in-game leader. FaZe Clan even listened to his input regarding roster moves.
Building a team around Niko brought the team relative success. FaZe Clan won several big tournaments with NiKo in the lineup, but never managed to win the major. Despite being given a big role in the team, NiKo decided to abandon the project.
In September 2020, FaZe Clan announced that it made an agreement with G2 Esports for a release clause on NiKo’s contract. The transfer fee G2 paid was reportedly the highest ever paid for a CSGO player. An analysis from Esports Transfer estimated that G2 would have paid around $2.5 million.
kjaerbye joins North
In 2018, Astralis was not the absolute powerhouse it is today. The Danes had won a major in 2017 but were struggling to regain their form. These struggles were exacerbated by Nikolai “dev1ce” Reedtz’s health problems.
One of the star players on that roster was Markus “kjaerbye” Kjaerbye. The 19-year-old rifler was named MVP in Astralis’ successful campaign at the ELEAGUE Major Atlanta in 2017. But kjaerbye felt like he should be the undisputed star of a roster rather than sharing the spotlight with his teammates.
After a disappointing run at the ELEAGUE Major Boston 2018, kjaerbye jumped ship to Danish rivals North. His former teammates were only given notice of his departure hours before the official announcement.
Less than 2 hours before the press conference, we found out Kjaerbye has signed with North. Speechless. And more motivated than ever!
— Lukas Rossander (@gla1ve_csgo) February 2, 2018
Stewie2K and tarik abandon Cloud9
At the start of 2018, Cloud9 was on top of the world. The squad had just won the ELEAGUE Major Boston in one of the biggest upsets in CSGO history. They brought a major trophy to the North American region.
But the squad did not manage to follow up on its breakout victory. Only two months after lifting the major trophy, Jake “Stewie2K” Yip left the squad in favor of joining the Brazillian roster of SK Gaming.
He was joined on the lineup by Tarik “tarik” Celik only a few months later, as the major-winning Cloud9 lineup completely imploded. Stewie2K and tarik only won a single trophy while playing on the Brazillian team, the ZOTAC Cup Masters, before moving back to American lineups in the fall of that year.
G2 win the third french shuffle
In the past, the French scene had a reputation of recycling the same players in different iterations of lineups. These roster shuffles were often initiated after a personal conflict between players made a given roster dysfunctional.
Fans were mostly disappointed with the roster moves because the very best French players rarely ended up playing together. This all changed in 2017 when G2 Esports assembled a French dream team, with Kenny “kennyS” Schrub and Richard “shox” Papillon finally playing on the same lineup.
The team never managed to fulfill its potential. At the start of the next year, fans were treated to yet another French shuffle.
Godsent become major contenders
In 2016, Fnatic was considered to have the best Swedish CSGO roster. The team enjoyed a six-event winning streak that culminated with a win at IEM Katowice 2016. A wrist injury for Olof “olofmeister” Kajbjer slowed down Fnatic’s momentum, but the roster was still strong.
But to everyone’s surprise, the roster was decimated as three of Fnatic’s players moved to Godsent. Jesper “JW” Wecksell, Robin “flusha” Ronnquist, and Freddy “KRiMZ” Johansen joined the newly-created organization to play with former in-game leader Markus “pronax” Walsten.
Godsent not only acquired Fnatic’s players, but its major spot as well. Valve doesn’t assign these spots to an organization, but rather to a core of three players. As the Fnatic core had reached the semifinal at the previous major, Godsent had obtained a spot in the Legends stage at the next major. But with KRIMZ returning to Fnatic only two months after leaving, Godsent lost the spot before the next major started.
Fortnite: Blatant Cheater Finishes Second In A Solo Cash Cup
A European Fortnite player cheated his way to a second-place Solo Cash Cup finish.
Competitive Fortnite’s European region grabbed all the attention in their second Solo Cash Cup of Chapter 2 – Season 6. However, instead of the tournament winner making headlines, it was yet another soft-aim cheater that became the topic of conversation. While DreamHack Winter Champion Merijn secured the Cash Cup win, a player known only as “GEMATO TASAKI,” became the subject of many VOD reviews across the community. Anyone who tuned in knew instantly that this player did not legitimately earn his second-place finish.
Player Cheats His Way to Second Place
Cheater vs Glitcher in an exhilarating 1v1 pic.twitter.com/uWRHVBbX28
— Reiss 🏴 (@Reisshub) April 10, 2021
Fortnite analyst Reisshub keyed in on a few damning clips of evidence from the cheater’s perspective. The first of which shows this player instantly locking on to an unseen adversary across the map. Clip number two displayed the same soft-aimer eliminating an opponent without missing a single SMG bullet. There is no question that GEMATO TASAKI purchased cheats, given the unprecedented 79 eliminations he earned across eight matches. While the result will most definitely not last, the situation shows how vulnerable Fortnite’s anti-cheat software can be at times.
Tournament Integrity and Undetectable Cheats
This incident is not the first time Fortnite’s anti-cheat has come under fire. An NA West player reached the finals of an FNCS Qualifier in Chapter 2 – Season 3 without immediate discipline. Epic has never fully elaborated on how the anti-cheat system works. It seems hit or miss at times. In this case, the anti-cheat failed its jobs and allowed a player to proceed through a tournament undetected.
how is he doing that and not getting banned pic.twitter.com/jjzJZnbZML
— aqua (@aquaa) April 10, 2021
Fortnite World Cup Champion David “aqua” Wang posted another clip of the cheater on Twitter, asking, “how is he doing that and not getting banned?” He has a point, considering how blatant the cheats are in the many videos that surfaced. It’s worth wondering how this player could make it through an entire tournament without Epic banning him. He undoubtedly ruined the chances of other players, who were playing legitimately and wanted to win. Unfortunately, those who fell victim have almost no recourse. Epic Games has not yet nullified the Cash Cup results or addressed the issue.
LoL: LCS MSS Lower Bracket Finals Recap- Team Liquid vs TSM
TSM and Team Liquid battled on Summoner’s Rift in the MSS Lower Bracket Final.
The first night of the Mid-Season Showdown Finals Weekend saw Team Liquid and TSM go head-to-head. One will be sent home packing tonight, while the winner will book their ticket to tomorrow’s Grand Final, where they will face Cloud9. TL was without their star jungler in Santorin, who withdrew from today’s series due to ongoing health problems.
The game started out as slow as it could get, with both teams weathering the early stage nerves. With the lack of action, Alphari was able to pull out to a nice creep score lead for himself. By the ninth minute, the difference was almost at 20, which is expected given how poor Renekton is in ranged matchups.
With limited contention from both sides, Team Liquid was able to gain CS advantages in both the top lane and bottom lane. By the 14th minute, they were out to just over a 1k lead. However, TSM was able to smartly send their bottom lane over to the top lane to force Alphari out of the lane. At 17:55 Alphari, smartly dodged a kill attempt from the TSM bottom lane to turn it around for a double kill.
Game One gets crazy
At 22:36 is when the game got spicy. At this point, Team Liquid decided it was time to coin-flip their way to victory with a Baron sneak. But they paid the price with Spica getting a Baron steal, something he’s very well known for. This brought TSM back into the game with the gold lead for TL out the window. It also allowed TSM to completely push into Team Liquid’s bottom lane, exposing the inhibitor. At around the 26-minute mark, Jensen got picked off for poor pathing after a failed dragon siege from TL. CoreJJ also dies for his efforts.
While the gold was even, the game still felt TL favored as far as the team fighting goes, both Tactical and Alphari were strong and kept TSM firmly at bay. A huge fight erupted 31:38, TSM managed to get their second dragon of the game at the cost of giving over a triple kill to Tactical. The game-ending play came around 36 minutes in, TL secured the infernal soul, acing TSM and pushed for the win.
- Kills: 15-6
- Turrets: 5-9
- Gold: 67.4k – 63.5k
- Dragons: 4-2
- Barons: 0-1
TSM started off Game Two like a house on fire. At 4:36, TSM was able to catch out CoreJJ and Tactical to pick up two kills early for Lost’s Tristana. Then, at 7:18, SwordArt proved why TSM paid the massive money to acquire him. The world finalist pulled off a beautiful Flash-Body Slam combo onto Jensen and Armao to pick up another two kills for TSM.
By this time, TSM was almost hitting a 3k gold lead and it was not even ten minutes into the game. Lost became the richest player in the game after taking multiple solo turret plates as well as the tower. By 17 minutes, the game looks all but over as TSM kills off a defending CoreJJ at the bottom lane tier 1 tower, followed by a solid Gnar ultimate from Huni to pick up two more kills for TSM. This was not the case, however, with CoreJJ pulling off a nice Flash combo at 21 minutes that allowed TL to get three massive shutdowns from TSM. With this, the comeback was on.
After this, TSM slowed the tempo down, focusing on farming and taking away jungle camps to avoid getting picked off again. While they tried to slow down the game, TL sped it right back up at 27 minutes. At this point, CoreJJ and Armao coordinated a beautiful Rell-Nocturne combo in the TL jungle to kill Lost and Spica. This allowed TL to get the Baron, and just like that, the game was flipped on a dime in a matter of moments. Not long after, a massive fight erupted at the dragon, and though multiple kills went to either side, Armao was able to steal away the dragon to deny the Soul. At 33 minutes, TSM decided to flip the game as they went for the Baron. But it was their downfall. TL ended up Acing them here and closing out the game to lead the series 2-0.
- Time: 34:34
- Kills: 13-18
- Turrets: 6-8
- Gold: 60.8k – 64.7k
- Dragons: 3-1
- Barons: 0-1
This game felt the most even out of the three games thus far. Five minutes in, Spica did a good job of catching Jensen out, Flashing from the river to pick up First Blood. But Armao got the return kill and started the feeding of PowerOfEvil. At nine minutes, TL opted for a trade, picking up the Ocean Dragon while TSM got the first Rift Herald. At 14 minutes, TSM was able to catch out Huni and it led to their second dragon of the game.
By 15 minutes, PoE had started snowballing for TSM. He was able to pick off Jensen, and by this stage, PoE was able to match Tactical, who was also 3/0/0. At the 19 minute mark, TSM did well to match TL in the dragon game. PowerofEvil almost singlehandedly zoned TL off with the Orianna ball as TSM got their first dragon.
A few minutes later, TL made some adjustments and punished TSM who went for their second dragon. Ditching the dragon altogether, they pushed up the mid-lane to take two towers, exposing TSM’s mid Inhibitor. 28 minutes in, TSM took control of the game as they snuck a Baron from under TL’s noses. Shortly after, Tactical and CoreJJ minutes stopped TSM in their tracks, killing off Lost and SwordArt as they pushed down mid. Through the game, Tactical was exceptionally strong and clearly the main focus of TL. But TSM found their dream team fight, where Armao was thwarted when he went for a dive onto PoE. With the engaged botched, TSM swept up the fight and pushed through to the Nexus.
- Time: 35:46
- Kills: 11-8
- Turrets: 9-5
- Gold: 68k-60.1k
- Dragons: 3-2
Coming into Game Four, the prospect of a TSM reverse sweep was on the minds of fans. But could they do it? The game was even up until the sixth minute, but at this time, TSM went for a dragon but was collapsed on by TL from both sides. With this maneuver, Team Liquid was able to get three kills as well as the dragon.
Ten minutes in, Armao and Alphari coordinated a great pick onto Huni, burning the top laner’s Flash in the process. To make things better for TL, at around 12 minutes, Tactical shot a lovely Senna ultimate at Huni near the mid turret after losing nearly all of his health to Jensen’s Viktor, resulting in a rather free kill for him. At the 13-minute mark, TL forced a fight in the top lane to expand their lead further. Here, they were able to kill Huni and knock down the tier 1 tower. Alphari, in the meantime, Teleported into the bottom lane to kill Lost too.
By the 15-minute mark, the game was all but over. TSM was down a whopping 7k gold and two dragons. At 16 minutes, TL picked off another three kills, pushing TSM’s battle lines back even farther. As a result, by 17 minutes, TL was up almost 10k with the mid lane Inhibitor tower gone. At 23 minutes, a fateful team fight broke out in the bottom lane. It was here that Team Liquid Aced TSM to close out the game, the series and TSM’s hopes.
- Time: 23:11
- Kills: 19-0
- Turrets: 10-1
- Gold: 47.4k-33.6k
- Dragons: 3-0
- Barons: 0-0
Atlanta FaZe advance to the Grand Finals at the Stage 2 Major by defeating Dallas
One-half of the Stage 2 Major grand finals is set, as the Atlanta FaZe punched their ticket to the championship with a win against the Dallas Empire. They now are guaranteed second place in the tournament and have a shot of taking home $200,000 grand prize,
Atlanta still has Dallas’ number in the Call of Duty League. The Empire, like most other rosters in the league, can’t beat FaZe no matter the situation. This has dropped them into the loser’s bracket where they’ll need to win two matches to have a chance at a rematch.
Atlanta FaZe secure another grand finals appearance
While both Dallas and Atlanta are considered top three teams in the CDL, few expected a win out of the Empire. FaZe has been too dominant in the first two stages and the map set for the matchup favored the boys in red.
Still, the Empire managed to make some of the maps close, especially the final Hardpoint. Although, every map but the Search and Destroy saw FaZe show their true dominance, sweeping through Dallas on the back of McArthur “Cellium” Jovel. Cellium finished the series with a series high 1.39 K/D.
The biggest talking point from the match didn’t come from Cellium, however. Instead, it came from Chris “Simp” Lehr, who went on a tear in the first Hardpoint that culminated with him one-bursting Ian “Crimsix” Porter with a Diamatti pistol.
— Call of Duty League (@CODLeague) April 10, 2021
Besides that moment, there was no highlight from anyone on the Empire. With the exception of Anthony “Shotzzy” Cuevas-Castro, each player finished with below a .90 K/D. That’s not a recipe that will beat the Atlanta FaZe.
Dallas now drops to the loser’s bracket where they’ll face the Toronto Ultra tomorrow at 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Atlanta FaZe awaits the winner from the loser’s bracket finals for one last Stage 2 Major matchup at 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time.
Rogue make history in 3-1 losers’ bracket win over G2 Esports
Rogue pulled off a dominating 3-1 win over G2 Esports in the League of Legends European Championship (LEC) 2021 Spring Split Semifinals, punching their ticket to face MAD Lions in the Grand Finals on April 11. With this win, G2’s streak of five consecutive LEC titles will come to an end, and for the first time since 2014, a team other than G2 or Fnatic will take the throne in Europe.
A clean win
A masterful performance from sophomore jungler Kacper “Inspired” Słoma headlined the match. While Rogue dropped the first game of the series, the team started with a commanding early lead, with Inspired and Andrei “Odoamne” Pascu securing three kills on Martin “Wunder” Hansen before 15 minutes. Rogue then doubled down on their early aggression for the rest of the series.
Game 2 began with Rogue securing another first blood in top lane, but G2’s global comp controlled the map for the majority of the game. The balance shifted when one sloppy drake steal from G2 ended with Rogue making quick work of their mispositioned members in the ensuing teamfight. From there, Rogue ran away with the game and closed out swiftly with a bot lane push.
G2 Esports were unable to recover in the third and fourth games and couldn’t keep up with Rogue’s playmaking as a team, particularly in terms of map movement and teamfighting. Caps secured first blood on his signature Sylas pick, giving G2 fans a glimmer of hope, but G2 were unsuccessful in transferring their leads into mid-game advantages. Rogue held a threatening defense as G2 went for riskier plays out of desperation and eventually had too much zone control for G2 to safely win out in five-on-five scenarios.
This final will mark Rogue’s first-ever finals appearance and Odoamne’s first finals in the entirety of his seven-year career.
The end of an era for G2 spells a new chapter for Rogue
With this historic win, the stage is set for the grand finals between league newcomers MAD Lions and Rogue. The winner will add their name to the ranks of Fnatic, G2 and Alliance, the only three teams to ever win a championship in Europe. The winner will advance to the 2021 Mid-Season Invitational in Reykjavík, Iceland and have a chance at international redemption from their early exits at the 2020 World Championship.
Ahead of the Finals, Odoamne is feeling confident about Rogue’s matchup against MAD.
“I’m excited to clap MAD Lions tomorrow,” he said in the post-game interview. “Two years ago, I wasn’t good enough to stay on the team and they kicked me, so now I get to kick them down.”
The LEC 2021 Spring Split Finals kick off Sunday, April 11, at 8 a.m. Pacific Standard Time.
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