Virtus.pro and Natus Vincere Swapped Support Players
Two CIS-based esports powerhouses Virtus.pro and Natus Vincere surprised many fans around the world by announcing that the two agreed to swap their support players – Vladimir "RodjER" Nikogosyan leaves Na`Vi to join VP, while Ilya "Lil" Ilyuk is transferred to Na`Vi.
The transfer caught the Dota 2 community by surprise as not many expected Virtus.pro, who were sitting at the third place of the Dota Pro Circuit with 2697 points, to change their roster. Also, Na`Vi were on the rise since they signed RodjER. As one can understand from the statements presented below, it was RodjER who expressed his desire to leave Na`Vi, while VP wanted to sign RodjeR. The management of Na`Vi decided to not held the player against his will and agreed with VP to transfer Lil.
The management of both organizations released the following statements:
"Right after ESL One Genting, I was contacted by Virtus.pro's general manager over RodjER’s transfer. We have known about VP's interest in him for quite a long time and, partially for this reason, have recently signed a two-year contract with him on improved terms. However, Vladimir expressed his wish to part ways with NAVI and we do not intend to keep him against his will. We agreed on the transfer sum and proposed to add Lil to the deal and, after VP agreed, we set up negotiations, which had a successful outcome. I always believe that whatever happens is for the best: we now have an experienced player, a Major champion who, in these circumstances, will be exceptionally motivated and willing to help us achieve the goals which we have set. I would like to thank Vladimir for the time he spent with us, and wish Ilya the best of luck and great success in the ranks of black and gold." – Yevhen Zolotarov, CEO Natus Vincere
"I'm happy to announce that our negotiations with RodjER and NAVI have been successful. It marks an important addition to our line-up before the key half of the season that will make our team stronger. As you already understand, Lil leaves us. I’d like to thank him for his contribution to the team victories on behalf of the organization. Ilya had shown his professionalism both in-game and media wise. This was a tough decision, but I'm sure it will positively reflect on the team's results. I wish Ilya success in his career". – Roman Dvoryankin, VP General Manager
The players also commented on the situation:
"It may sound a bit hypocritical, but back when I was starting my professional career, I really dreamed of playing under the NAVI tag. It isn't like I pursued this dream very persistently, but in this situation, such an opportunity is, perhaps, a blessing. I'm very thankful to the organization and the players for accepting me in. I will do my absolute best to meet the expectations that are put on me. I would also like to cite a famous quote: "Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get". – Ilya "Lil" Ilyuk
"It's a great milestone. I'm excited to become a part of Virtus.pro. I'm very familiar with my new teammates, especially since Solo, Ramzes, 9Pasha and I have recently won the WESG European qualifiers together. I will do my best for Virtus.pro and will help the team to claim new titles". – Vladimir "RodjER" Nikogosyan
Lil joined Virtus.pro in the end of 2016. Together the “bears” visited various premier tournaments, placed 5-6th at the International 2017 and 1st at ESL One Hamburg 2017, as well as emerged victorious at three DOTA Summit events.
RodjER was signed by Natus Vincere in September 2017, since then the team has been on the rise – it managed to qualify for various Pro Dota Circuit tournaments, place first at Adrenaline Cyber League, 4th at DreamLeague Season 8 and 3-4th at MDL Macau.
- Roman "RAMZES666" Kushnarev
- Vladimir "No[o]ne" Minenko
- Pavel "9pasha" Khvastunov
- Vladimir "RodjER" Nikogosyan
- Alexei "Solo" Berezin
- Ivan "Artstyle" Antonov (coach)
- Vladislav "Crystallize" Krystanek
- Danil "Dendi" Ishutin
- Victor "GeneRaL" Nigrini
- Ilya "Lil" Ilyuk
- Akbar "SoNNeikO" Butaev
- Alexander "XBOCT" Dashkevich (coach)