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Natus Vincere acquire zeddy as Jady's replacement

Written By    AashirAhmed  -  share on

We are less than 72 hours away from the start of VCT 2022 - EMEA - Stage 2 - Challengers - Main Event and one of the participating teams, Natus Vincere, just announced a last-minute roster change bringing on Nikolai "zeddy" Lapko as a replacement for Yaroslav "Jady" Nikolaev.

Natus Vincere had entered VALORANT in the late stage of VCT 2021, just before Stage 3, when they signed the orgless team No Pressure. During VCT Stage 3, the team managed to go all the way till the Challengers Finals event which had four slots available to Masters 3 in Berlin. Unfortunately though the team failed to make it through as they lost to Acend and Giants Gaming respectively in the double elimination bracket even though they started very good with a win against Team Liquid in Round 1 of the upper bracket. After VCT, the team failed to capitalize in various events that they participated including three 2nd places in Meta Open Valorant, Finest Invitational and Moscow Cybersport Series #4 - Superfinal.

During the off-season, they signed Jady, who played with Ninjas in Pyjamas throughout 2021 including all stages of VCT. While playing under the NiP banner, Jady has played various roles including Sentinel, Initiator and sometimes even Duelist on Reyna. In contrast, his contributions produced a quicker outcome in the Na’Vi lineup where the team placed 2nd in VCT 2022 - CIS - Stage 1 - Closed Qualifier 1 after a contested Grand Finals match against the winners of VCT 2022 - EMEA - Stage 1 - Challengers - Main Event.

Since only one team would be awarded a spot at the Main Event from the CIS qualifiers, Natus Vincere were able to redeem themselves in VCT 2022 - CIS - Stage 1 - Closed Qualifier 2. Nonetheless, their hopes of making the first Masters event were soon shattered as they couldn’t keep up with other teams in their Group and finished with a 2-3 record. However, their placement in the tournament was enough to earn them a direct invite at the upcoming VCT 2022 - EMEA - Stage 2 - Challengers - Main Event.

In the TwitLonger attached to his tweet, Jady mentioned that he will be stepping down from playing competitive Valorant to focus on his mental health. Throughout the statement, he had nothing but words of gratitude for the organization and the people he worked with, which isn’t surprising considering the presence they have h ad in the esports scene.

Replacing Jady in the lineup will be Nikolai "zeddy" Lapko, who has played for other reputable teams in the CIS region including One Breath Gaming and forZe. His contributions were notable in helping the roster attain 1st place finishes in several local tournaments and even a couple of VCT tournaments last year. Unfortunately, they weren’t able to have a huge impact on the regional scene, nor earn a spot at an international Masters event. Furthermore, the departure of three core members before Stage 1 left the team in a state of confusion preventing their qualification from either of the two qualifiers they were invited to. Zeddy has managed to maintain a 1.15 Rating, 225.1 ACS and 1.19 KD throughout his professional career and has been spotted playing Astra and Viper.

With this roster change, Natus Vincere will now field the following players:

Mikhail "Duno" Fokin Artur "7ssk7" Kyourshin Denis  "dinkzj" Tkachev Kirill "Cloud" Nehozhin Nikolai "zeddy" Lapko

Dmitry "SmartSeven" Smartselau (coach) Vlad "TheVs" Moroz (manager)

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