After three years, two major titles, and two The International championships, Jesse “JerAx” Vainikka departed OG to retire from competitive Dota 2. The announcement came earlier this year, but OG just recently released a video featuring JerAx where he discussed his retirement and plans for the future.
In OG’s January blog post, JerAx told fans that Dota 2, as a game, is an endless puzzle that offers you solutions, yet none of them completely crack it. He got hooked to the game because of the huge learning opportunities it provides.
He felt tired and exhausted with the yearly “grind” and decided to quit the game on a high note, which was his second The International championship. Even though he is arguably at the peak of his career, he felt that his competitive identity had gone away.
What’s the next step for JerAx? “It’s a good question but I don’t know the answer”, the Finnish player said in the interview.
JerAx said the best moment of his career was when OG rebuilt the team from scratch ahead of The International 2018, saying he got to create a new family under the same banner.
The hardest challenge in his career was during his time with Team Liquid in 2016. JerAx felt like a huge failure in The International 2016, saying he gave it his all, but the team still fell short in the huge tournament. It was an emotional time for him and he became too critical of himself, with his bottled emotions bursting after the team’s elimination.
After the post-TI shuffle, he started his journey with OG. Thanks to JerAx, OG claimed the following titles:
His retirement was a surprise to fans as OG has a good chance to defend its title and claim a third Aegis.
“I have to be selfish. Given the chance that I can do this [retire], I think OG makes it possible. I feel like it’s the only decision for me. There’s just way more hungry and passionate people that deserve the spot,” he told fans.
Jerax fans should not lose hope. The legendary player told fans that there is a small chance that he will return to the competitive scene, but not as an active player.
This might not be the end of his Dota 2 journey. Jerax still has a passion for the game but for now, he’ll take a step back and pursue new things in his life.