OpTic enters pro Apex by signing former Esports Arena roster

The hottest squad in pro Apex joins the Green Wall.

Screengrab via Respawn Entertainment

OpTic Gaming has signed Dude’s Night Out, the former Esports Arena team with an outstanding track record in this year’s Apex Legends Pro League.

Ira “dooplex” Shepherd, William “Skittlecakes” August, and Logan “Knoqd” Layou, the new OpTic roster, are considered by many to be the best team in Apex at the moment. Dooplex, Skittlecakes, and former member Evan Verhulst first made a name for themselves in the Esports Arena Series E ecosystem. They were known as Team Intel and each earned $500 per month for their efforts. The roster quickly became dominant in that league, a space that fosters emerging talent in the Apex scene, and earned a direct contract with Esports Arena in October 2021.

But Esports Arena weren’t among the teams invited to participate in the ALGS Pro League when it began. They instead earned a spot through the open qualifiers and went on to dominate the league. The team was so good, in fact, that they became a victim of their own success. Near the conclusion of the Pro League’s first split, Verhulst, who was considered their star player, was poached by TSM, an established Apex dynasty with much deeper pockets.

Esports Arena picked up Logan “Knoqd” Layou, a talented player with his own share of bad luck. Knoqd had been dropped by Cloud9 despite his strong performances on the team, cast aside for the gifted free agent Mac “Albralelie” Beckwith. While Esports Arena stumbled in the final week of the Pro League’s first split and finished third, they thrived without Verhulst in the second split.

They finished in first place, winning $30,000, and are a clear favorite to take home another $250,000 at the Stockholm LAN, the international playoffs this weekend that conclude the second split of the Pro League.

As members of OpTic, they join an organization with successful teams in Halo, VALORANT, and Call of Duty.

About the author
Ethan Davison

Ethan is a freelance journalist covering Apex and its competitive scene for Dot. His work has been published in Wired and The Washington Post. Stay on top of his Apex reporting by subscribing to his Substack, The Final Circle.