The Russian bears twice in size
Virtus.pro get second team with VP.Prodigy
The most famous Russian Dota 2 organization now has a second team - VP.Prodigy. Instead of switching players, Virtus.pro just made an entirely new roster.
Virtus.pro have been in a peculiar spot in the last Dota 2 season. They’re not doing as good as they did before but they’re definitely not the bottom of the barrel. The team’s last major achievement in a Valve LAN event came in 2018 when they took first place in the Kuala Lumpur Major. A lot has changed since then, mainly the roster of VP. Just like many other teams, the post-TI shuffle had its effect on the bears and what was known as The VP roster finally shattered.
Roman “RAMZES666” Kushnarev joined EG, Pavel “9pasha” Khvastunov became part of their rivals Natus Vincere and Vladimir “RodjER” Nikogosyan is now playing for another CIS squad – Winstrike. The two remaining members of VP were
- Vladimir “No[o]ne” Minenko
- Alexei “Solo” Berezin
To fill the gap VP acquired Roman “Resolut1on” Fominok and stole back from Na’Vi by taking Bakyt “Zayac” Emilzhanov. The final piece proved to be Zaur “Cooman” Shakhmurzaev. The latter had some good moments during Tug of War: Mad Moon but is currently benched and VP are playing with Igor “iLTW” Fialotw as a stand-in for ESL One Los Angeles Online. So far in the event, the bears have managed to defeat two other CIS teams – Gambit Esports and HellRaisers. Virtus.pro are currently tied with OG for the first place in the group.
- READ MORE: What the zayac drama has taught us
A second team - Virtus.pro Prodigy
Virtus.pro announced their second roster on April 1, not the best date to make reveal something like a brand-new roster – VP.Prodigy
According to VP’s social media, the team will revolve around Egor “epileptick1d” Grigorenko and Vitalie "Save-" Melnic. The two young players have already been part of the main poster earlier in the season but were eventually replaced as the team lacked results. It seems VP liked their performance after all and saw room for growth. In its essence, VP.Prodigy is the youth division of VP. Joining the duo will be Dmitry "DM" Dorokhin who last played for Chaos EC and Albert "yume" Garaev who was part of Team Singularity before they disbanded. The fifth player is currently a stand-in - Rostislav "fn" Lozovoi. Virtus.pro General Manager, Sergey Glamazda commented:
The thought of the second lineup came to us back in January, however, only after the Leipzig series had it become more than just an inkling. The idea is fairly simple: the second lineup allows young players to attain professional scene experience and knowledge without the enormous pressure of instant result expectation. The club has acquired players that might join the main roster later - or even replace it completely in the long run.
This isn’t the first time we see a team make a separate youth division. The Chinese region was probably the first to come up with the idea as many of the major organizations there had a sub-division with young talent. OG also made a second team in November 2019 labeled OG.Seed. In the CIS region, Team Empire used to be split into Team Empire Faith and Team Empire Hope. Currently, Faith was renamed back to simply Team Empire but has only a single remaining member in the face of Igor Andreevich "Maden" Modenov. In the meantime, Hope are actively competing in the tier 2 Dota 2 scene. VP themselves actually had secondary rosters in the past like Virtus.pro Polar in 2014-2015 and Virtus.pro Ladies in 2012.
We’ve already seen VP.Prodigy in action at the StayHome Challenge Dota 2 series. There the young squad took lead in their group by defeating both Danil “Dendi” Ishutin’s B8 and OG.Seed. In the playoffs, Prodigy claimed another victory over FlyToMoon and the bears are currently in the winner’s finals waiting for their next opponent. Needless to say, the new line up of Virtus.pro is exceeding expectations, but their main goal will be qualifying for a Dota 2 Major event.
Stay tuned for more Dota 2 news.