Chinese esports organization FunPlus Phoenix is looking to acquire French in-game leader ALEX as the first player on its new CS:GO roster, according to a report by Jarek “DeKay” Lewis.
FPX nearly acquired Heroic’s lineup in March to feature a CS:GO lineup for the first time since the org was created in 2017. The deal, however, fell through when Patrick “es3tag” Hansen, one of Heroic’s players at that time, agreed to join Astralis once his contract with Heroic ended in July. FPX is one of the founding teams in Flashpoint, a CS:GO league created by teams in 2020. It competed in season one with Heroic’s roster and later with the players from Bad News Bears once the deal with Heroic collapsed.
The Chinese org has been reportedly targeting ALEX since June alongside other esports organizations. The deal is considered difficult because Vitality is reportedly asking for $600,000 for ALEX’s buyout. This reported high value made organizations such as FaZe steer away from the negotiations and sign Kjaerbye from the free agency. FPX has recently increased efforts to secure ALEX’s services, though, according to DeKay.
ALEX has been on Vitality’s bench since March when he stepped down due to the intense traveling schedule before the coronavirus pandemic forced tournament organizers to switch from LAN to online play. The 24-year-old preferred to stop playing before he suffered from burnout. ALEX was the first of many top-tier CS:GO pros, such as gla1ve, Xyp9x, Kjaerbye, and olofmeister, to take a break from competition this year.
With many players are already locked in for the rest of the season, it’s unclear whether FPX is planning on signing a new CS:GO roster for 2020 or next year.