To everyone’s surprise, the fan-favourites Virtus Pro Dota 2 roster that many expected to last through 2018 is no more after the CIS organization engaged in a trade with their regional rivals Natus Vincere in a player swap that could have huge ramifications down the line.
Natus Vincere were the first to announce the changes to each team’s respective rosters via their official website.
What Does This Mean for Natus Vincere?
Not a joke.
— Natus Vincere (@natusvincere) February 1, 2018
Well, for one thing, Natus Vincere arguably got the better talent off of the trade. Ilya ‘Lil‘ Ilyuk is a long-time in-and-out member of the Virtus Pro Dota 2 roster and is widely considered as one of the best position 4 supports in the world. Though polarizing and notorious for his cocky attitude, especially during interviews, he has more than, in one occassion, put Virtus Pro on his back and helped will the CIS bears to victory with his timely rotations and prowess on micro-intensive heroes such as Enchantress and Visage.
Other than the talent and attitude Lil brings to Natus Vincere, the 22-year-old Ukrainian Dota 2 player also comes with a boat load of points. He has 899 Qualifying Points for the season, owing much of it to Virtus Pro’s win at ESL One Hamburg and The Summit 8.
With him on the roster, Natus Vincere will now leap frog Evil Geniuses for the fifth spot in the season leaderboards with 1,109 Qualifying Points.
What Happens To The Virtus Pro Dota 2 Roster Now?
— Virtus.pro (@virtuspro) February 1, 2018
You can’t exactly blame for Natus Vincere for poaching Lil when they had a chance. It isn’t very often that a player of Lil‘s caliber becomes available. It is fair to question, however, Virtus Pro’s rationale for agreeing to this blockbuster trade.
Of all their players, Lil has spent the most time on the Virtus Pro Dota 2 roster. In fact, Lil has spent more than half of his professional Dota 2 career with the CIS organization. He was also part of the underdog Virtus Pro Dota 2 roster that finished in 5th-6th place at The International 2015; the very same squad that eliminated the star-studded Team Secret lineup.
There’s also the question of talent and fit. There is no doubt that Vladimir ‘RodjeR‘ Nikogosyon is good. However, he is not at the same level as Lil. At least, not yet anyway. Though he emerged as one of the underrated bright spots of Team Empire at The International 7 and performed exceptionally well at times after joining Natus Vincere, he has yet to prove that he can perform consistently at the game’s highest level.
Unlike Lil with Natus Vincere, the arrival of RodjeR will not affect Virtus Pro‘s status in the standings. They will remain in 3rd place with 2,697 Qualifying Points.
Which Dota 2 team do you think came away as the winner in this CIS blockbluster trade? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.