Arkosh Gaming is being forced to make some roster changes ahead of the North American qualifiers to The International 2021.
G.O.A.T. has been removed from the team on the official Dota 2 majors registration page, the system which Valve uses for handling Dota 2 esports rosters. Though it isn’t reflected on the major registration page, The International 2015 champion Kurtis “aui_2000” Ling is being shown as a member of the team on the Dota Pro Circuit App, suggesting that he is the new hard support for the team.
The roster move comes before the TI10 qualifiers and after Nick “God_Z” Zhang outed himself as a member of the team last week and the player behind G.O.A.T..
No longer playing for @ArkoshGaming. I wish the organization the best of luck in the future. These guys really are a great group of guys and they deserve all the support and hype. Will be looking to join another NA team for future DPC and other tournaments.
As of now, GOAT out.
— Nick Zhang (@GOD_ZDota) June 9, 2021
It is unclear how long the team has been playing without G.O.A.T. this season. Arkosh Gaming played its final game of the season with Mason “mason” Venne as a substitute for carry player Pale Horse. It is unclear if the actual Pale Horse was the one who stepped down from the roster or if another member of the team may have simply swapped names. During that game, mason outed Andrew “Jenkins” Jenkins and Jason “Newsham” Newsham as members of the team in the post-match interview. It is unclear who the other members of the team are.
Officially, the Arkosh Gaming roster includes the following players:
This is what’s in store for TI10 so far
It’s hard to tell whether the addition of aui_2000 is an upgrade for Arkosh Gaming and how that will impact the team’s chances of reaching TI10. There’s no question that aui_2000 is a more credentialed player than God_Z, as aui_2000 has a long list of career accomplishments that includes first-place finishes in a number of events including the 2015 Dota 2 Asia Championship, MLG Columbus, and most notably The International 2015.
Though his resume is much stronger, the one big knock on aui_2000 is that he seems to have been looking for a way out of the competitive end of Dota 2 for years now. During a tumultuous 2018, aui_2000 had an extended run as a coach for various prominent teams. He returned to action with Fighting PandaS in 2019 and was active with the team in 2020 after being sponsored by CR4ZY.
Since then, aui_2000 has been working as a caster and was not a part of any registered Dota 2 team for the 2021 Dota Pro Circuit season. Throughout 2021 he has worked as a caster, most recently at the WePlay AniMajor.
In peak form, aui_2000 is likely a more able player than God_Z but it’s unclear if he’ll be able to shake off the rust and gel with the team in just a few weeks’ time. Arkosh Gaming is set to return to action on June 30. The team’s first matchup will come opposite 4 Zoomers.