As teams scramble to prepare for the upcoming regional qualifiers for The International 2019, Chaos Esports Club remained steady as they reform their roster to best fit Lasse “MATUMBAMAN” Urpalainen.
Just two days after signing Matu, who was previously on Team Liquid’s inactive roster, Chaos released veteran players Nico “Gunnar” Lopez and William “hFn” Medeiros to make room for some younger talent. Dropping hFn completes their roster upheaval after moving from South America to Europe, leaving only team captain Rasmus “MISERY” Filipsen from the old squad.
Cheng “vtFαded” Jia Hao made waves this season on the Southeast Asian Dota Pro Circuit along with the Power of MYSG+AU stack. That team came out of nowhere to compete in several DPC events and took games from several top SEA teams like Fnatic and TNC Predator.
Prior to the Power stack, vtFαded played for Clutch Gamers, but only briefly, and spent the majority of this season playing with For The Dream—a legacy Dota squad that has been competing in China since 2015. After moving to the SEA, he and his squad had a good run for just over a month before he decided to join Chaos.
The 20-year old Carry brings a lot of draft options to the table for Chaos. His upside is very high, and this likely means Matu will focus on playing mid or rotating as needed for his new team. With the talent between them, Matu and vtFαded show the promise of a good frontline duo.
Along with those moves, Chaos has added former Vega Squadron support player Alexei “j4” Lipai as their new head coach. This move makes sense, considering j4 was a teammate to Chaos support Milan “MiLAN” Kozomara for nearly two years.
These will be Chaos’ last moves before the EPICENTER Major concludes and the roster becomes locked for TI9, should they make it.
Despite playing in the stacked European region, Chaos will actually be the favorite to win the region since Team Secret, Team Liquid, OG, and Ninjas in Pyjamas have all secured TI9 spots. The only way Chaos would not be the favorite is if Gambit Esports knocks out Alliance at EPICENTER, which would force the strong Alliance team to play in the EU Qualifiers.
Chaos will probably score a direct invite to the closed regional qualifiers, which run from July 8 to 15. Only six teams will make it into TI9 through the qualifiers—one from each of the six regions.