OG arrived in CS promising big things. One of the greatest organizations in the history of Dota 2, their two International wins suggested that this is an organization that will not settle for merely existing is the CS space.
Two complete rosters later, OG have done little more than settle for their own mediocre existence. With two rosters that have failed to impress or failed to even achieve much outside of the BLAST space in which they are protected by their partner spot, they have barely even managed to progress the careers of their stars. Outside of Shahar "flameZ" Shushan, former OG players have either made sideways moves or backward steps when departing the organization.
Following their recent disappointments, difficulties regarding the IGL situation with Nikolaj "niko" Kristensen standing in for Nemanja "nexa" Isakovic and the departure of flameZ, OG have once again decided to revamp their roster and the outcome is… interesting.
Let’s start with the in-game leader situation. While the job niko did while standing in was admirable, especially considering that it was his first time undertaking the responsibility, he was once again told "thank you and goodbye," as nexa finally returned to OG’s starting lineup.
While many would view this to be a positive as the Serbian has his fair share of admirers, I would like to propose the question: why?
Seriously, what has nexa ever done to suggest he is a particularly good IGL? He couldn’t even muster a tournament victory in a team containing two of the best players in the world in the form of Nemanja "huNter-" Kovac and his cousin Nikola "NiKo" Kovac. Even the way he left G2 is a reason to criticize the ability of nexa as an IGL, he just wouldn’t sacrifice himself for the better players on his team.
His refusal to sacrifice himself brings us to our next problem with this team. Seeing as it now includes Dion "FASHR" Derksen, Niels "k1to" Gruhne, Iulian "regali" Harjău, and the only other remaining player from the previous lineup, Maciej “F1KU” Miklas, how is this team going to stack up and how can it ever hope to be successful?
Let’s start with k1to, the man most likely to become the tip of the spear for the new OG attack. With no disrespect to k1to, if he was good enough for this team, he wouldn’t have been in and out of BIG’s lineup faster than a UK Prime Minister in Downing Street. There are far worse options, but he’s not the star fragger in this role that he will be required to be for this team to succeed.
As for FASHR, there was always the sense he was quite hard done by during his time on fnatic. A team that potentially misunderstood his best qualities, he was removed from most of the roles that made him look so special during his time with ECSTATIC. While he’s likely to get most of those roles back on this team, the issue remains that there’s still no way of knowing whether he can perform in them consistently at tier one.
This also brings us to another worry with this team. While most other teams default in the same way, with a pack taking map control, an Aggro Lurker looking to exploit holes they create, and a Passive Lurker preventing the opposing team from taking map control of their own, OG with both nexa and niko were an outlier to this meta.
More frequently operating in a 4-1 pack-heavy default, it would often be their Aggro Lurker looking to carve out openings in a round. While this used to be flameZ, in FASHR, they have a player who is even more naturally aggressive, so we wouldn’t be surprised to see him operating in a similar way in their new lineup.
Quite frighteningly, this means, should things play out the same way, nexa should be operating within star roles and therefore expected to put up star numbers. It’s a nightmarish prospect to say the least.
Spare a thought for F1KU too, a perfectly fine player, once again it is unlikely that he will be allowed to shine on a roster where he could actually be a difference maker. A solid component to keep regardless, you have to wonder as to whether OG will ever allow him to explore his potential within the team.
Even on the CT-side, the potential problems are clear to see. F1KU will most likely be a small site Anchor, and k1to likely his big site counterpart with FASHR and nexa taking the remaining rotator rifle roles. It isn’t a setup that screams firepower.
This does bring us, finally, to the one bright spot of this team, regali. An AWPer that fans and experts alike have long been clamoring for to get a shot at the big time, his opportunity has finally arisen with this new roster. Clearly a very talented player, he has more than earned this chance, and he will need to take that chance to the fullest for this roster to have any chance of success.
The fact is, without OG’s partner slots, this is a team that would struggle to ever make it to any of the meaningful events on the calendar. A roster that already leaves a sour taste in the mouth, we’re willing to bet it will be the first roster to make changes in the coming season.