Team Empire has undergone another roster change. Maxim “yoky” Kim has parted ways with the team for the second time since The International 5. Team Empire has now welcomed Victor “GeneRaL” Nigrini into the squad and reassigned the captain role to Roman “Resolut1on” Fominok.
— Team Empire (@team_empire) November 3, 2015
Maxim “yoky” Kim has parted ways with the Russian squad for the second time since The International 5. Although reasons have not been disclosed, the team has been struggling with results as of late.
Victor “GeneRaL” Nigrini has replaced yoky. GeneRaL has played recently with ScaryFacezzz and has a history of playing with various CIS teams such as Big Red Machine, Sqreen’s Squad, DuzaGaming, and ARCADE.Power Rangers.
Team Empire had been experiencing a rough patch in their career since the end of TI5, in August. Struggling to clinch any titles or qualifier spots in recent tournaments, their performances have been a stark contrast to what fans had come to known of them leading up to the International.
While they were able to secure their place in the Frankfurt Major Regional qualifiers, they placed third in their group stage and failed to progress to the playoff stage.
The team also recently fell to Alliance, 1:2, in the WCA 2015 LAN qualifiers.
Roster changes since TI5
After a well-deserved break following The International 5, Team Empire announced a part of their roster changes for the new season, on August 25th, when they parted ways with Maxim “yoky” Kim and Andrey “ALWAYSWANNAFLY” Bondarenko and welcomed former XX5 and Molodoya Komanda player, Ivan “ubah” Kapustin and former Aspera player Andrey “The_apathy” Aleshkov.
However, Empire were the first team to find themselves in a precarious position regarding the newly implemented roster locks. When one of their new members, Andrew “The_apathy” Aleshkov, was recruited before the deadline, he was unable to register with Empire since he had already accepted his invite to team aSpera. His commitment to the latter team resulted in a locked position, leaving him unable to be kicked or leave on his own.
With several days left in the transfer window, the team approached Valve for help to rectify the incident. Valve’s response remained hard lined, reminding the teams of the rules and criteria in the new system.
Already losing the ability to participate with their chosen lineup in the Regional Qualifiers and being faced with the decision to play with their designated substitute or play in the Open Qualifiers, the team chose the latter. Once they were already in the unfortunate situation of having to take the long road in hopes to play in the Frankfurt Major, they used the time to their advantage to try various players in order to find the mix they hope to excel with.
The team welcomed back Yoky, Alexander “NoFear” Churochkin as the captain and confirmed their Open Qualifiers lineup to include nofear, Resolut1on, Silent, yoky and ALOHADANCE.
Team Empire current roster
Airat “Silent” Gaziev
Roman “Resolut1on” Fominok
Victor “GeneRaL” Nigrini
Ilya “ALOHADANCE” Korobkin
Alexander “NoFear” Churochkin