In what could arguably be considered one of the most eventful Danish offseasons in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, another superstar player has decided to switch teams.
After spending five months on OpTic Gaming, Emil “Magisk” Reif will be competing for Astralis in 2018. The 19-year-old rifler will be filling the spot previously occupied by Markus “Kjaerbye” Kjærbye.
Kjærbye’s departure caught Astralis by surprise on Feb. 2, as he shocked his teammates and organization by moving to national rivals North.
Astralis has historically been the most successful team from Denmark, and the roster experienced its largest success in 2017 when they won the ELEAGUE Major: Atlanta. Following the team’s victory at the Valve Major, Astralis remained consistently at the top of international competition—but a prolonged medical condition from star player Nicolai “device” Reedtz was forced to sit out two months of competition.
At the recent ELEAGUE Major: Boston saw the team massively underperform. They failed to exit the group stage for the first time, meaning they will have to re-qualify for the next Major.
Astralis’ addition of Magisk comes off the back of what appears to be a mass exodus from OpTic, as long-time player Oscar “mixwell” Cañellas also departed the team on Feb. 7. Kevin “HS” Tarn is also reportedly looking to leave the team, with Renegades his rumored destination. That would leave only Adam “friberg” Friberg and Aleksi “allu” Jalli on the OpTic roster with just hours to go until the ESL Pro League roster lock.
The new Astralis lineup will debut in the online portion of that tournament when it gets underway on Feb. 12. Last season Astralis managed to reach the online finals.