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Published: September 26, 2022

Written by: Isabella Aslam

  • The organization teased the signing of FunPlus Phoenix’s Kyrylo “ANGE1” Karasov
  • It seems NaVi might be looking to sign the entire PFF roster
  • NaVi might desperately need new players to make up for the disappointing 2022 season

In an announcement video about their acceptance into the EMEA partnership program, NaVi teased what could be the beginning of a new VALORANT roster.

NaVi Teases a New Player

The time of the year has once again arrived when organizations are preparing for the next competitive season and VCT partnered teams are being announced. Preparations have not gone past Natus Vincere which recently locked in its spot in the VCT 2023 EMEA league. The Ukrainian organization has since then allowed its VALORANT roster to explore new options for next year, by which it’s teasing a massive roster rebuild. 

The organization dropped heavy hints of this with their recent video confirming they are accepted into the EMEA league. At about the 38-second mark, the video shows NaVi’s owner Yevhen Zolotarov running into a merchandise room where a jersey is laid out in plain sight. It reads “ANGE1” and is accompanied by a closed caption that reads “New 2023 samples arrived”.

This ANGE1 can be none other than FunPlus Phoenix’s Kyrylo “ANGE1” Karasov. NaVi’s announcement video is no less than a confirmation that the organization has already signed the player. Being FPP’s current in-game leader, as well as being from Ukraine, where NaVi is based, makes ANGE1 a good pick for the organization, as well as an appropriate player to tease. 

Is NaVi Looking To Replace Its Entire Roster?

When looking at the reasons why the organization is looking for an all-new roster, one just has to look at NaVi’s performance this year. Although the team competed in the VCT EMEA Stage 1 and 2 Challengers Main Events, it never advanced to the playoffs. NaVi also did not make it far in the EMEA Last Chance Qualifier for Champions 2022, beating Guild Esports but ultimately falling to Team Liquid and G2 Esports.

Part of NaVi’s somewhat lackluster performance during the 2022 season could be attributed to the large roster changes the organization made earlier this year. In early April, NaVi sacked its Russian players following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February. Additionally, due to the war, a lot of NaVi’s support staff have gone on to help their country’s war effort, which brought additional chaos to the organization and the training of its players, ultimately negatively impacting the roster’s performance. 

 Since FPP was not accepted into the EMEA partnership program, its players and even coach Erik “d00mbr0s” Sandgren, are now up for grabs, and NaVi seems to desperately need fresh members. Since none of FPP’s players have indicated they are looking for new opportunities, one can assume that NaVi has already struck a deal with FPP. 

Since teams are allowed to officially start signing players from September 26, we might soon be seeing an announcement from NaVi.

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