According to a Twitter post by Don Haci, the organization is looking to bring back former player Ladislav “GuardiaN” Kovács. Haci refused to comment past that, but the post follows recent rumors discussing a potential split between GuardiaN and his current team, FaZe Clan.
Two weeks ago, FaZe posted a disappointing 1-3 record in the StarLadder Berlin Major’s Legends Stage that eliminated them from the tournament. This capped what had already been an underwhelming summer for a team that many had high expectations for.
Shortly after, fans noticed that FaZe was practicing without GuardiaN and Filip “NEO” Kubski. This was followed by reports that the team was looking to sign Marcelo “coldzera” David and Aleksi “Aleksib” Virolainen to replace them.
During the Berlin Major, rumors began circulating that Natus Vincere would no longer be playing alongside Zeus. Following the event, Zeus announced his intent to retire from competitive Counter-Strike after many years. His last event will come at BLAST Pro Series: Moscow, which is set to take place on September 13.
GuardiaN is certainly an able replacement. He helped Natus Vincere spread its wings in Counter-Strike Global Offensive from 2013 to 2017. He did the same with FaZe from there, helping the team take first place in events such as EPICENTER 2018 and the ELEAGUE CS:GO Premier 2017. That said, while he is certainly a strong addition to any team there might be some drama incoming regarding his original exit from the team.
GuardiaN split from Natus Vincere in 2017 under less than ideal circumstances. According to reports, the player had butted heads with in-game leader Denis “seized” Kostin as well as new signing Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev. He was deactivated from the team and replaced by Zeus, fresh off winning the PGL Kraków Major with Gambit Esports.
Following his release, GuardiaN and s1mple engaged in a public back-and-forth over his exit. s1mple took aim at him on both Reddit and Twitch, implying that GuardiaN had betrayed the team, while GuardiaN suggested that S1mple was a toxic teammate on Twitter.
s1mple is firmly entrenched as the top star of Natus Vincere at this point and if it’s true that GuardiaN is returning, they’ll have to patch things up in a hurry. Answers on Natus Vincere’s roster should come soon with Zeus’s retirement less than a week away.