Entity signs controversial Dota 2 player Pure

After having his contract terminated by Virtus.pro, Entity is bringing on Pure and facing immediate backlash.

Screengrab via Entity

Another rumor has been proven true. Entity officially signed Ivan “Pure” Moskalenko to its Dota 2 roster today. Pure previously had his contract terminated by Virtus.pro after drawing a controversial “Z” symbol on the in-game mini-map of a game the team was playing live on stream. 

The Russian government has frequently used the “Z” as a militarist and propaganda-filled symbol to show support for campaigns in favor of the ongoing invasion of Ukraine. Pure drew the symbol on the mini-map while a game his team was playing was paused during Eastern Europe’s Dota Pro Circuit Regional Playoffs last month. After the match, Beyond The Summit and Valve officially disqualified VP’s roster. 

Shortly after that disqualification, VP terminated Pure’s contract for “diminishing actions that led to disqualification from the tournament” and causing additional harm to the organization’s “relationship with the worldwide esports society.” He was recently replaced by RAMZES. 

Related: RAMZES returns to Virtus Pro ahead of final Dota Pro Circuit Tour

Despite the controversial situation, Entity was rumored to be interested in signing Pure and has now made the move official, saying that the organization is “fully aware of the PR nightmare” that awaits it.

Entity “contemplated” other options, but eventually decided Pure was the best fit for what the team needed after Remco “Crystallis” Arets left to join Team Secret. The organization maintains this is purely a move made to preserve and improve its performance in the DPC, and was assured by talks with Pure that he meant “no ill intent towards anyone” with his actions. 

“We believe that the mistake he made was not small, but we also believe that it was not big enough for him losing his potential Dota 2 career as an 18-year-old talent,” Entity said. “The team and the players made the decision to support and compete alongside Ivan, we stand behind him and hope the community can understand.”

Entity’s decision and statement on the signing are already being heavily scrutinized by the Dota community, with many pointing to Pure’s previous statement, in which he didn’t apologize at all and tried to minimize his actions. Additionally, players and fans are calling out the team for focusing on Pure’s “potential” and fit with the team rather than how his actions affected others in regards to the war that is still ongoing. 

Entity does not want to speak for Pure and hopes to “release a personal statement” from the player in the future as the players prepare to compete in Western Europe’s next DPC Tour while bootcamping in Poland at a team facility.