Blog May 27, 2021

New players in the NAVI DOTA 2 team

On May 25, just a week before the start of the first in three years Kyiv Dota 2 major — WePlay AniMajor 2021, the esports community was shocked by the news: Vladimir No [o] ne Minenko and Akbar SoNNeikO Butaev left AS Monaco Gambit. And the team, for the record, will play the Wild Card match at the aforementioned Major on June 2.

On Twitter, No [o] ne spoke quite warmly about working with former colleagues:

«I want to thank my teammates and the management of the organization for a great few months. Despite not having the coolest results, it was an important experience that I gained a lot of insight from» 

Now No [o] ne and SoNNeikO are part of Natus Vincere. They replaced Vasilenko and Andrey ALWAYSWANNAFLY Bondarenko as part of Bogdan Iceberg.

The community's reaction to the news varied. F.e. reddit: 

The Ukrainian club issued a statement on this matter:

The Dota Pro Circuit spring season is over. Our Dota 2 team finished 6th in the t division and failed to qualify for WePlay AniMajor. 
Unsatisfying results and defeats in the key matches of the season significantly undermined the atmosphere in the team. Therefore, changes were needed to get back on track.
With little time left before qualifiers for The International 10, we have our last chance to make a roster change. While searching for ways out of the crisis, we found out that Akbar «SoNNeikO» Butaev is not planning to play a Major tournament with ru AS Monaco Gambit. He doesn't feel that the team can score high enough to get sufficient DPC points for a direct TI 10 invite. In his turn, Vladimir «No[o]ne» Minenko, who was in a team without a distinctive leader, started considering various paths in his career.
It's no secret that ua No[o]ne could have joined ua NAVI earlier. But ultimately, the team decided to continue working with Iceberg and qualify for the Major tournament. Unfortunately, it wasn't possible to completely cope with internal problems. Therefore, the question of further plans arose again.
NAVI and SoNNeikO are crossing paths for the fourth time. We share a common important goal — to qualify for The International 10. After the end of qualification, we will have a look into possible further collaboration with Akbar, likely depending on the results achieved. 
We look out for all the ua Natus Vincere fans out there to support the Dota 2 team during this challenging period. We will do our best to fulfill our promises.

For NAVI Iceberg and ALWAYSWANNAFLY have played since September 2020, when the club signed FlyToMoon.