?Massive roster shuffle: A lifeline for Fnatic and OpTic Gaming?

Vignesh Raghuram

29o, May, 2018

Image sourced from Evil Geniuses

Yesterday, we saw Evil Geniuses drop two of it’s most experienced players in Clinton “Fear” Loomis and Rasmus "MiSeRy" Filipsen. The news was met with dismay, with many fans unsure about whether they’ll even make it to The International 8 no matter who they picked up.

But today, they might have just picked up two veteran heavyweights. The team has found two suitable replacements in former Team OG duo Gustav "s4" Magnusson and Tal "Fly" Aizik.

The roster switch comes at a point in time where both OG and Evil Geniuses are far from their respective glory days. Both teams have struggled to achieve noteworthy results in any of the Majors throughout the season, which has resulted in them, standing in the 11th and 14th position in the DPC tables.

While OG had no chance at qualifying for TI8, it was clear that Evil Geniuses needed to step up their game by a massive amount and surpass all expectations at the China Super Major to nab a direct invite to The International 2018. Rather than doing so, they decided to switch things up and change their roster to have a better shot at the Aegis.

"This is the hardest part of the season for every team that doesn't achieve the goals set for themselves," Evil Geniuses COO Philip Aram wrote on Facebook. "At EG, we had to take a hard look at how to get back to competing at the level we expect of ourselves."

The move to Evil Geniuses ends an almost four-year-long spell for Fly with OG and Jonathan "n0tail" Sundstein. Fly found multiple successes with OG winning 4 Valve Majors, leading them to become one of the most successful teams in Dota 2 history. Fly also reunites with Cr1t with whom he formed a formidable support duo in OG. This transfer also sees s4 reunite with Arteezy after their mostly successful stint at Team Secret.

Evil Geniuses Roster:

SumaiL also returns back to the middle lane after EG’s offlane experiment.

Their active roster will be:


  1. Artour “Arteezy” Babaev
  2. Sumail “SumaiL” Hassan
  3. Gustav "s4" Magnusson
  4. Andreas “Cr1t-” Nielsen
  5. Tal "Fly" Aizik
Implications on the Dota Pro Circuit

These moves obviously mean that Evil Geniuses is no longer eligible for an invite to The International 8. The same as OG. But the consequences to the Dota Pro Circuit don’t end there.

From OG’s press release:

“Today, we announce the transfer of… This transfer does not affect our DPC situation in any way, but understandably, we have decided to withdraw from the Chinese Dota2 Supermajor. In the interim, we have set out to rebuild the roster and participate in the European TI Open Qualifier later next month.”

The fact that OG has withdrawn from the China Supermajor, opens up a slot in a $1,500,000 prize money, and more importantly 2250 DPC point event. Considering the format of the event, they will need to replace them to have it run smoothly (without any byes). This is a massive opportunity for teams on the cusp of making it into the Top 8.

While replacing OG with some Chinese team seems like the most obvious choice considering VISAs. Perfect World might consider offering the slot to either Fnatic or OpTic Gaming as almost all the big Chinese teams are already there.

Cases for each team:
  • Fnatic

    Fnatic was in the 11th position when the invites for the China Supermajor were sent out. Perfect World invited the Top 10 teams, which meant that Fnatic was forced to play in the SEA qualifiers which they lost.
  • OpTic Gaming

    OpTic Gaming is the only team currently in the top 10 of the DPC points table to not be competing in the Supermajor. If Perfect World decides to go with the current Top 10 in the DPC, OpTic Gaming should get the invite, especially considering their form.

Why shouldn’t it be a team from the European region?

An invite from the European region would be justified if OG made it through the qualifiers. But considering the fact that Perfect World invited the Top 10 teams in the DPC points table on 19th March 2018, an invite going to Europe will be undeserved.