One of the longest-tenured players at the top of competitive Dota 2 has finally left his team.
Natus Vincere announced today that Gleb “Funn1k” Lipatnikov had parted ways with the organization, roughly two years after he joined.
Gleb was dominant in his first year with Natus Vincere. The team managed to accrue a double-digit number of titles in 2013, though their most notable result may one where they came up just short, finishing as runners-up to Alliance at The International in a five-game series.
Results since have been mixed—2014 saw the team scarcely touching tournament trophies with the exception of a pair of Dota 2 Champions League victories. Results at The International were especially disappointing for the team, considering their high standards, as Natus Vincere finished tied for seventh.
While both Lipatnikov and the organization provided lengthy statements regarding the move, the motivations for it remain unclear. Lipatnikov, for his part, offered that he was “going to be inactive for some time and resolve my own problems.”
While those problems aren’t laid out specifically, Lipatnikov also mentioned that his “priorities have changed by now.”
Natus Vincere general manager Eugene Erofeev was effusive in his praise of Lipatnikov, emphasizing that the move was in no way related to the player’s performance. He also expressed some confusion as to Lipatnikov’s reasoning for the move.
“It is hard for me to make any comments on his choice and try contemplating on this subject, but the decision is taken and we have to accept it,” Erofeev said.
Lipatnikov’s decision leaves Natus Vincere with only four players, including long-time members Danil “Dendi” Ishutin and Oleksandr “XBOCT” Dashkevych. The organization gave no indication of who might replace Lipatnikov, nor did they offer a timetable for the finding of that replacement.