Despite playing in ESL One Los Angeles Online, Ninjas in Pyjamas is already planning out moves for the remainder of the Dota Pro Circuit season.
NiP released Universe from the team, although it appears this move was not made due to Universe’s performance, but because the coronavirus is likely going to change how the DPC is run and push more events to become regional competitions.
Universe is a longtime teammate of captain ppd, dating back to before the pair helped Evil Geniuses hoist The Aegis of Champions at The International 2015. He joined the NiP roster as the organization shuffled after TI9.
Throughout his time with NiP, Universe was a stable second support next to ppd and a wealth of experience from his time with EG, Team Secret, and other top teams throughout the years. He was never the best player on the team, but his play was serviceable enough to help NiP remain a threat.
Universe was not a part of the NiP roster for ESL One LA Online because he lives in the United States, while most of the roster is based out of Europe. This resulted in NiP bringing in stand-ins for both Universe and Rodrigo “Lelis” Santos for the duration of the event.
If this model stands, Lelis may also be removed from the roster. Milan “MiLAN” Kozomara is playing position four on the NiP roster as a stand-in, so the team could bring him in for a longer trial run after the event.
Evgeniy “Blizzy” Ree is the other stand-in, who is actually standing in for the originally planned stand-in of RAMZES666. He is another option for the team should Lelis be cut. Blizzy is on the inactive roster for Natus Vincere, having been benched following TI9.
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