Hard carry Steve “Xcalibur Ye” and hard support Nikola “LeBronDota” Popović have left B8’s Dota 2 lineup, the team announced today.
Dendi’s organization was part of a dubious record by reaching 24 losses in a row, the longest losing streak by any team in pro Dota 2 history. This included two eliminations from major online tournaments in ESL One Los Angeles Online and a winless performance at the WePlay! Pushka League.
While the losing streak was exacerbated by external factors, such as the team constantly being forced to find stand-in players, it seems like all parties agreed that changes were needed.
Both players have seemingly departed from the team with no hard feelings. LeBronDota thanked Dendi and mentioned that he’s now a free agent, while Xcalibur had a considerably longer statement.
Xcalibur said that the team’s subpar results came from “unlucky circumstances.” The punishing schedule of online tournaments meant that the players were unable to get in proper practice time. Instead, the team moved on to the next series, failed to recover from previous losses while trying new options, and inevitably found themselves falling before the hurdle yet again.
Dendi’s win rate with B8 is below 16 percent right now, having won just nine games out of 57, according to professional Dota 2 stats website datdota.com. It’s indubitably a far cry from his long-lived 1,513-match run and 56-percent win rate with Natus Vincere, the highest player-team combo in history.
B8 has yet to announce its replacements for the two players. Three of the original players—Dendi, Andrey “Ghostik” Kadyk, and Rinat “KingR” Abdullin—will remain on the roster.
With several CIS teams acquiring talent, such as Natus Vincere picking up Vitaliy “so bad” Oshmankevich and Virtus Pro recently signing a second team named Prodigy, B8 is going to have to dig deep to fill out the squad.
For now, B8 will seize the opportunity to take a break. If Xcalibur is right, it’ll be much needed recuperation for the roster.