Team Unique Add Fn to Their Dota 2 Roster
Team Unique have bolstered their Dota 2 squad with the signing of the former Live to Win mid laner Rostislav “fn” Lozovoi who joins the team as a replacement for Yaroslav “Pikachu” Vasilenko. This marks just one of many roster changes Unique made this season, having already rebuilt their roster twice in 2021.
Roster Stability is Not Team Unique’s Strong Suit
Team Unique have earned an unenviable tag as a team with one of the highest turnover rates in the Dota 2 esports scene, having made more than a few drastic roster changes since the turn of the year. On Saturday, January 2, Unique announced a new roster, consisting of former NOVA players in Artem “spAce” Golubiev, Gleb “depressed kid” Ziryanov, Maksym “pjon” Netrebsckiy, Ilgiz “lowkez” Arduganov, and Dmitriy “kickeed” Pilyaev.
That iteration of the team did not last for long, with all five members getting benched in favor of NoPangolier roster just two weeks later, on Sunday, January 17. The new-look roster has seen relative success in their competitive endeavors, having secured a spot in the upper bracket of ESL One CIS Online: Season 1, where they failed to reach for top spots, yet still managed to pick up two wins against Team Empire and NoTechies to keep their spot in the upper-division for the next season.
Last month, Team Unique were seen competing at EPIC League Season 3 Division 2, where they again failed to impress and finished in third place, after they lost against Prosti Esli (0-2) in the lower bracket finals. In a bid to improve their chances to establish themselves as one of the strongest Dota 2 squads in their region, Unique signed a veteran fn ahead of the second season of the 2021 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC),
A 12-Man Lineup
The signing of fn comes despite having seven players listed on their inactive roster. While some players are relatively unknown in the Dota 2 esports scene, there are also three big names in Egor “19teen” Lexyutin, Dmitriy “kickeed” Pilyaev, and Danil “illusion” Grzhevka, who are still waiting for their chance to prove their worth.
Team Unique have not commented on what their plans are with their inactive squad, but due to the current situation with COVID-19 and many organizations struggling financially, it seems highly unlikely Unique will find a new home for all seven anytime soon. That said, there is a chance Unique might want to form a secondary team – akin to what Virtus.pro have done with VP.Prodigy – and develop their young stars that way.
Preparations for the second season of DPC
By signing fn, who has previously played for Team Empire, Virtus.pro, Gambit Esports (now AS Monaco Gambit), and VP.Prodigy, Team Unique are confident they’re ready to compete for the highest spots in the regional competitions. Unique now field some of the most experienced CIS Dota 2 players, including Semion “CemaTheSlayer” Krivulya and fn’s former teammate at Team Empire Andrii “Ghostik” Kadyk.
With their top-six finish in the first season of CIS DPC, Team Unique secured their spot in the upper division for the second season, set to kick-off next week, on Tuesday, April 13. The tournament will feature many familiar faces, including Virtus.pro, Natus Vincere, AS Monaco Gambit, Team Spirit, EXTREMUM, as well as two promoted teams in PuckChamp and Winstrike Team.
ESL One CIS Online: Season 2 will keep the same format that was used during the first season. The teams will compete in a single round-robin, best-of-three (Bo3) format to determine which the strongest CIS Dota 2 squad is and which will take home the largest share of the $205,000 prize pool.
The top three teams will also earn a spot in the upcoming Major, with the third-place team earning a spot as a Wild Card seed, runners-up getting a direct bye into the group stage, while the champions secure a spot in the playoffs.
Valve have yet to reveal any details about the second DPC Major of 2021; however, if the COVID-19 pandemic doesn’t spoil the plans once more, we can expect the tournament to happen sometime in May or June – after the conclusion of all regional DPC leagues.