On July 12th, Splyce’s international roster was confirmed and formailsed – the squad consisted of David “DAVEY” Stafford, Arya “arya” Hekmat, Dutch AWPer, Joey “CRUC1AL” Stuessel, Asger “AcilioN” Larsen, and Mongolian, Enkhtaivan “Machinegun” Lkhagva. The international squad was deemed by the CS:GO community to be one of the teams to watch in the current ESL Pro League Season, yet the team never met the expectations and hopes that were imposed upon them.
Splyce’s current roster was expected to perform well coming into the ESL Pro League’s 4th iteration – the international imports of CRUC1AL, Machinegun, and AcilioN were expected to revitalise the squad’s fortunes. There was some understandable hype, given that AcilioN was a star before he was forced into action for SK Gaming, CRUC1AL had been dominating the UK scene and Machinegun’s superstar performances became the backbone of the community’s outlook on the squad.
DAVEY and Arya also had a great deal to offer. Arya played as an AWPer/Support hybrid on the original SPLYCE roster, whilst DAVEY had huge showings at MLG Columbus with his display of clutches and pistols.
At the time, CRUC1AL was contracted to LowLandLions, AcilioN was without a team, and TheMongolZ still were clinging onto Machinegun. In an interview with DAVEY, conducted by ELEAGUE CS:GO host, Richard Lewis, DAVEY outlined the steep costs of transferring the three new additions to America.
With AcilioN, all they had to offer was the salary and travel costs to get them to the team house in America. TheMongolZ’ CEO allowed Splyce to pick up Machinegun on a free, and the $1000 Splyce offered as a starting bid would be donated to charity.
With CRUC1AL, the buy out bid for him was a tiring battle due to Belgium’s laws; Splyce would later buyout CRUC1AL for over $10k, in total, the costs would be around $12k-20k. With the potential of the team, one would think it is ideal to invest so much in this team. Sadly, it wasn’t the case.
“We set CRUC1AL’s starting bid for the buyout at $2.5k. At that time, it was reasonable, but (LowLandLions) they said no. It got to the point where we had to pay over $10k for CRUC1AL.
“At that time, it was way above CRUC1AL’s market value. But, I told Marty (CEO of Splyce) that I NEEDED CRUC1AL on the team. His potential for being a superstar was incredibly huge.”
David “DAVEY” Stafford
One glance at Splyce’s recent results, with their full roster, suggests that the chemistry is missing:
Based on the industry standard, Splyce’s players are probably salaried around $2k-3k a month. To get CRUC1AL, AcilioN, and Machinegun to America to play with them, it required an initial $12k-20k (+ the salaries). In ESL Season 4, they crumbled and went 2-20 with Machinegun, beating only the last placing team eUnited. In addition, they are currently teetering on the brink of elimination, needing to play a relegation match in order to keep their spot.
Qualifying for tournaments is imperative, yet Splyce are ineligible to play in the minor qualifiers due to the nationality count. They also failed to qualify for ELEAGUE, and didn’t even participate in the ECS qualifiers. Even when they were invited to the iBUYPOWER Invitational Fall, Splyce barely did any work; going on to be obliterated by major champions SK Gaming in the quarterfinals.
It’s hardly proving to be a great return on investment…
Damian “daps” Steele could be the man to resolve all of Splyce’s problems.
DAVEY currently fills the role as Splyce’s main caller with Arya supposedly playing the dedicated role, there could be a possibility of him playing a dual role as he takes the IGL role. Failing that, a possible roster change or coach addition might be what’s needed to get Splyce back on track.
Damian “daps” Steele (the former caller of the current OpTic squad) has the ability to lead in game and could be the key to brushing off Splyce’s misfortunes. To take the burden off DAVEY, daps could help prepare the squad with strategies and player development before matches. If he is not willing to coach, I’d like to see him replace arya and take over the same role he took in OpTic – a dedicated IGL/Support.
It would require yet another investment from the Splyce infrastructure, but without an immediate remedy, the CS:GO squad are circling the drain.