Imagine and Odyssey merge, add Leviathan Dota 2 squad
Imagine and Odyssey are now “Team Imagine," and the new organization is already making one big move: It's signed North American Dota 2 squad Team Leviathan.
With the merger, multi-millionaire pharmaceutical CEO and Odyssey owner Martin “Cerebral” Shkreli will become chairman for the company, while Imagine owners Gerard “BM” Kelly and Michael “Devilian” Roschenwimmer will move to chief executive officer and managing director respectively.
Team coach Rohit “Curryshot” Nathani now assumes the role of general manager for all of the organization's endeavors, both in and out of League of Legends. As a result, the team is actively searching for an League Championship Series caliber coach to fill the role Nathani has left vacant.
Shkreli told the Daily Dot that he believes “leveraging our [the two organizations'] mutual strengths” will create a franchise that is “good for esports and its players.”
Imagine CEO Kelly added: “We were excited about our initial conversations with Martin and his excitement about taking a team seriously and procuring the best players and staff available. I am really looking forward to the growth that Imagine will be able see because of this partnership.”
The team has more plans for expansion, Kelly said. It’s looking to move into Rocket League— a new indie game that mixes race cars and trucks with soccer gameplay—and Hearthstone, and is scouting talent at the highest level of both games.
Imagine's League of Legends lineup will remain unchanged—Odyssey's team has essentially disbanded. The now Team Imagine League of Legends squad took third place in the 2015 Summer Challenger Series Regular Season. It lost its first series of the playoffs 1-2 against the Alex Ich-led Renegades and will face Cloud9 Tempest on Aug. 11 for third place. The winner of that match secures a spot in the 2016 Spring Promotion Tournament, where it will play either Enemy or Team 8.
Imagine's new Dota 2 squad has been apart of the North American Dota scene since early 2014, though missed out on qualifying for the biggest tournament of the year, the International 2015. This will be the team’s first sponsorship since it left Flipsid3 Tactics in October 2014.
Kelly, Roschenwimmer, and Shkreli are all newcomers to the esports industry. Kelly and Roshenwimmer made their mark with the acquisition of Storm and Elomingle in May, which rebranded to Imagine after qualifying. Shkreli launched Turing (later renamed Odyssey) on May 6. The team failed to qualify for the Summer Split after a loss to Cloud9 Tempest. He later loaned out Nathani, top laner Joshua "Chunkyfresh" Kesrawani, and marksman Pierre “Steeelback” Medjaldi to Imagine, which helped lay the groundwork for the merger.
Images via Riot Games, Valve, Psyonix, and Blizzard | Remix by Jacob Wolf