To kick off the new year of competitive Counter-Strike, former NRG trio Fatih “gob b” Dayik, Nikola “LEGIJA” Ninić, and Johannes “tabseN” Wodarz have formed their own competitive team, BIG. Following a disappointing stint in North America, in which the roster struggled to develop, the group are looking to forge their own way in the scene after being released.
Teaming up with the veteran players will be the familiar face of Johannes “nex” Maget who has a lengthy history of playing with Gob B and tabseN in past German lineups. Additionally, the group have opted to fill the final remaining spot with Alternate Attax member Kevin “keev” Bartholomäus.
Heading back to home soil in Germany, BIG will compete with Mousesports for the status of top ranked team in the nation.
“After our 1-year stint with NRG in North America, Johannes (tabseN), Niko (Legija) and myself have decided to return to Germany and together create a German team that we’ve been dreaming about.
“We’ve always had this roster constellation in mind, that’s why we decided to pay the buyout for Joe (nex) from mousesports and Kevin (keev) from ALTERNATE.”
Fatih “gob b” Dayik
This BIG announcement comes off the back of a lacklustre year for NRG eSports. The organisation have since opted to build an entirely North American roster from the ground up, leaving the founding trio out of the picture. The acquisition of Nex and Keev was allegedly something that had been in the works for some time according to the statement made by Gob B. Playing with familiar faces in new teams can alleviate transitional stress; however, this situation naturally raises questions as to what kind of impact this team will have internationally.
The team certainly pose a competitive roster within the German and European scenes, and should be able to gain footing in online leagues throughout the year. But what good would it be for Gob B and co. to form a new organisation, move half way across the world, and achieve the same kind of results they had with NRG?
This is not to say it would be entirely impossible for this team to be the next BIG thing – but the track records of the individuals on the team, it is highly unlikely.
As can be seen in NRG’s event results across 2016, the team’s core performances left a lot to be desired. Time and time again opportunities to crack into the upper echelon of competitive Counter-Strike would present themselves – and would be subsequently fumbled.
Of course, the European trio only had the chance to play half of the year under the NRG banner; however, it is evident that bringing in BIG (last one I promise) talent had minimal, if any, effect on their placings. To go further in depth, the fragging abilities of Gob B and Legija should be considered as well: Legija has only held a +1.00 HLTV rating for a matter of weeks in 2016, whilst Gob B is currently sitting at a miserable 0.84 rating, and the age-old “IGL” excuse can’t protect him forever. In other words, the prospective German lineup lacks firepower – BIGtime (I lied).
The Atlantic ocean has become a mirror, and that the reflection of NRG’s mired tournament runs and consistently mediocre league play is looming over the players of this new organisation. Nearly all of these players have been playing near the top level of CS for quite some time now, and all have fallen short of overcoming elite teams time and time again. Unless this is the possible, but rare, case of finding that perfect mix of talent, BIG will be that competitive team that you can count on to make quarterfinal tournament exits and place unexceptionally in their leagues.