Roughly two weeks after being removed from SK Gaming, Epitácio “TACO” de Melo appears to have found a new team.
The 23-year-old rifler looks to be joining Team Liquid, as he has replaced Lucas “steel” Lopes on its ESEA roster. The change comes only four months after steel became part of the roster on Nov. 11, which saw him push the team to several top placings at international LAN events. But despite the team’s relative success, the players appear to have deemed it necessary to replace steel.
TACO—who won two Valve Major championships with the SK Gaming roster—informed his fans of his decision to remain in North America in a tweet on March 29. The same evening, TACO was spotted alongside the majority of the Liquid organization’s other players, which furthered rumors of him joining the organization.
This likely brings an end to what could only be considered one of the most eventful roster shuffles in CS:GO. TACO’s departure from SK reportedly led to the German-based organization chasing after all kinds of top tier talent, including Na`Vi star Aleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev, before securing Cloud9’s Stewie “Stewie2K” Yip.
The implications this may have for two of the region’s top teams will now become a major focal point for the remainder of 2018. With three of the strongest teams in the region changing their rosters, there might now be room for a new top team to rise.
Update 4/6 2:30pm CT: TACO has officially replaced steel on the Team Liquid roster. Steel has stepped down from the team for personal reasons, and the current team roles will remain the same. TACO will be the team’s site anchor and entry fragger.