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The three best roster moves of 2017


2017 saw plenty of roster changes, from a global shuffle to swapping out players mid season. Some good and some bad, but today I’m going to single out the best. More specifically my top three roster changes of 2017.

#3: SK Gaming pick up João “felps” Vasconcellos

Photo by:

At first when SK Gaming picked up felps, they didn’t look so hot. Aside from Dreamhack Masters Las Vegas, they went out in groups of IEM Katowice and Starladder Season 3. Fortunately for them, starting at cs_summit, they made a comeback. From that point on, they went on to win IEM Sydney, Dreamhack Open Summer, ECS Season 3 finals and ESL One Cologne. Obviously this roster started having issues after the major, being unable to make it past the first rounds of playoffs or even losing out sooner.

Felps added a new dynamic to the team, changing SK from a mostly passive team aside from Fernando “fer” Alvarenga. It seemed that felps just held down the W key while playing, and it encouraged everyone else to do it as well.

With the success that this roster had throughout their time with felps, this makes the team one of the most successful teams of 2017.

#2: FaZe Clan pick up Ladislav “GuardiaN” Kovács and Olof “olofmeister” Kajbjer

Although this roster has only been together since August, they saw massive success. Winning the biggest event aside from the majors in ELEAGUE and another one of the biggest at ESL One New York. Though they found themselves out in the group stages of Dreamhack Masters Malmö and EPICENTER, their success in such a short time is almost unmatched. And, somehow picking up these two seemed to activate Håvard “rain” Nygaard even more, turning him from beast to god.

Adding olofmeister and GuardiaN gave these two a new beginning. They both fell from being the best at what they did in 2015 to being 2nd-3rd best on their respective teams after both of them suffered injuries between IEM Katowice 2016 and MLG Columbus. Fortunately, since joining FaZe they have started looking like their old selves. GuardiaN becoming unstoppable with the AWP and olofmeister ripping off the heads of their enemies.

The success in such a short amount of time and winning two of some of the best events this year easily puts them towards the top of the leaderboards. Becoming the number one team in the world and possibly starting their own era, FaZe are the most skilled lineup in CS:GO history after this roster change.

#1: FaZe Clan pick up Nikola “NiKo” Kovač

Photo by: Helena K

FaZe picking up NiKo is no doubt the best roster move of 2017. Possibly one of the best in CS:GO, rivaling Marcelo “coldzera” David’s birth onto the scene in 2015 and Dennis “dennis” Edman’s joining of fnatic in 2015. Picking up NiKo, FaZe saw immediate success. Making it to the finals of IEM Katowice, Starladder Season 3, IEM Sydney and ECS Season 3 Finals. Winning Starladder during their journey, NiKo found himself his first MVP medal and a new home. Not to mention the wins at ELEAGUE and ESL One New York as well.

NiKo instantly became the best player on FaZe and propelled this team to the top. This was definitely an upgrade from Philip “aizy” Aistrup who massively under-performed since he joined the team in 2015.

Picking up NiKo and then much later on olofmeister and GuardiaN, FaZe arguably became the best team of 2017. Between SK and FaZe, it’s a battle and we’ll see by the end of the year after BLAST Pro Series, IEM Oakland, ECS and EPL Finals are finished who ended the best.

Featured image via ELEAGUE.

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