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Le Tank is out and has been replaced by a weeb - such is the cycle of life - Europeans are taking North Americans' jobs and Astralis might just need MSL.
In this weeks edition of "The old guard steps back and gets replaced by someone younger," RpK is stepping back from his position on Vitality and will be replaced by (allegedly VAC banned) Frenchman Kyojin.
Note: This unvacbanning had nothing to do with the big unvacbanning above. We think.
Kyojin is a "more support-oriented" player, as per Vitality's team owner, which is why the team didn't just end up slotting Nivera in for Le Tank. RpK wanted to continue to play for the team through Blast, but that came to an abrupt end.
Maybe Vitality and Alex actually did need each other after all
In news from across the pond, tarik has left the active lineup of EG, who have promptly decided to replace the "content king" with superstar... MICHU?
Sure, MICHU is a solid player and he did move to the US to play for Envy, but all things point to floppy being available from Cloud9's failed roster, while Jonji and motm are also opportunities.
EG? More like EhhhG.
ZywOo just had his first negative event on Vitality of the year.
Sorry, we got that wrong. He didn't.
He just had his first negative event on Vitality EVER.
That's it, he's washed up. 2021 strikes again. Vitality got dumped out of BLAST pretty unceremoniously in a game that has a whole lot of significance. Not only because ZywOo got ass-blasted by a guy called try, on 9z, but because it was the last game of one of the other washed up players on Vitality - more on that later.
We do need to talk about try, though. 102 adr and 72 frags over three maps against Vitality is seriously special - especially when he took the opening duel more than anyone else on his team, winning three quarters of them.
While 2021 has seen some scenes fall apart, with the Scandinavian regions seemingly getting weaker, we're seeing some new ones pop up. Argentina is the newest one to keep your eyes on, with try flying the flag high. For too long Brazil has been the only South American nation worth watching, but try is changing that quickly.
Speaking of Scandinavian teams falling apart, Astralis got swiftly 2-0'd by OG, with valde going absolutely wild, in what would have been described as his audition to join them if Astralis weren't in such shambles. At least Bubzkji played... and swiftly went 7-16. Ah, well.
Every game at BLAST so far has been 2-0, other than Vitality losing. Spirit sent Extra Salt back to NA, but more embarrassingly Team Liquid got slapped back by Dignitas with Lekr0 and HEAP going berserk.
At least we can all enjoy FURIA 2-0'ing MIBR. arT took almost 60% of the opening duels in that game, by the way.
Stop stressing, we got you. We know you're reading every newsletter, desperate for an update. What on earth has the DreamHack Stockholm MVP been up to since North disbanded?
Well, he's been on the PR offensive recently, including an appearance on the HLTV Confirmed podcast, where he spoke a lot about his time on North and what the future holds. You could watch the whole VOD, or you could just take our word for it on what he said.
He has had offers from multiple teams, both in CS and VALORANT, but insisted he would never even consider switching game, and instead is well aware that he may need to join a new team, slightly weaker on paper than he is used to to prove he can still be an asset.
Very similar to cadiaN, and in fact, his career looks pretty damn similar.
He mentioned that North were 'not a real team' and instead a group of individuals, but took a large portion of the blame for that and proclaimed that he would work on that a lot more.
He also mentioned on stream that he thought going international might be the way to go rather than Danish; which is probably why he's been streaming in English, and trying to improve individually with the rifle as he tries for the top spot in Denmark on Faceit.
We respect the hustle, honestly, but it's fair to say not everyone is convinced, and MSL's snarky response shows he's still a little thin skinned - but that won't change. You can only change their minds by doing better, so let your game do the talking.
At least if Mauisnake is right, HYENAS will be the best team in the world. aizy's back, baby.
Illustration by Crash_
Are you one of those people that got a VAC ban five years ago or before you played your first Major related event? Well then you're in luck, because our gracious lord Gaben has given you a pardon.
Basically, under these new conditions, Valve acknowledges that the original rules they used were not only harsh, but also outdated. As they rightfully say in their blog post, some VAC bans are as old as eight years.
Many struggling players are now free to show their talent on the big stage - that is if that damned virus gives us the chance - and don't need to worry about a mistake they made many years ago when they were young and, frankly, kind of stupid.
Some of the big names on that list are Jamppi, who's might come back from his VALORANT holiday soon, and vsm, who will finally be able to make the move up from the lower tier Brazilian teams.
An important change however, or rather the lack thereof, comes for the group of matchfixers. That means no #FreeSteel and #FreeBrax... Which we understand. Match fixing is illegal in many countries, cheating in a video-game when young is not.
Don't get us wrong, it's hard to weigh the two against each other, but one of them actively sought to injure competitive play, and the other was someone making a stupid decision. And besides, cheating in competitive play is still a big no-no.
Conclusion: don't be stupid.
Illustration by NovaH.
aizyesque and Logan got into a HEATED argument on the podcast, when they couldn't agree, but which play do you think is the best of all time?