Team Spirit made some changes to its roster last week, bringing in two new players and swapping around some old talent. As a result, Igor “iLTW” Filatov moved to the team’s inactive roster and Alexey “nongrata” Vasilyev parted ways with the org.
The two veteran players had represented Spirit for just under six months prior to the change, but iLTW wasn’t officially benched until earlier today when Spirit registered its new players in Valve’s Dota 2 team registry.
All teams competing in the ESL One Los Angeles Online Europe/CIS bracket had to finalize their rosters today prior to the tournament’s start, which meant Spirit had to register both of its new players and remove iLTW.
This still worked out for both sides, since iLTW ended up being asked to stand-in for Zaur “Cooman” Shakhmurzaev on Virtus Pro for the duration of the tournament. Since he’s only playing as a temporary member of the team, he did not need to register with VP and was not affected by the registration cutoff this morning.
Spirit is holding onto iLTW’s contract because this sudden move was caused by the team itself, not individual play, and the organization wants to make sure he is taken care of.
“The decision to part with Igor was completely dictated by the crisis in which the team found itself,” Spirit CEO Nikita Chukalin said. “Any team from our region, in which it will be this or next season, will receive serious reinforcement, but I am absolutely sure that we had no other choice. Igor is still in Team Spirit and we are open to an offer for his transfer. I hope he can realize his potential and his future career will be successful.”
Depending on how VP performs at ESL One LA Online, the team might end up pivoting away from its long-time stand-in Cooman and focus on obtaining iLTW through a transfer, especially after his strong showing on the first day.