CSGO Star Niko Joins G2 Esports From Faze Clan
In what G2 is calling the “biggest signing in CSGO history,” the team has picked up Nikola ‘NiKo’ Kovač, as he joins his cousin Nemanja “huNter-” Kovač on the G2 Esports roster. NiKo was formerly one of the biggest stars on FaZe Clan’s roster, which has kept speculation around the move at a fever pitch.
G2 May Make More Changes
G2 hints that this may not be the last roster move for the CSGO team, either – a clear change in direction as they’ve realized what they’ve been doing hasn’t been working for some time now.
“With this signing, we’re taking a new direction with our team,” G2 said in a statement. “Over the course of the next few weeks, we’ll be evaluating the team and its progress to determine the optimal lineup for each match. We will provide more information on this in the coming days.”
G2’s results have been up and down throughout 2020. While they managed to win the BLAST Premier Spring regular season and placed 2nd at the IEM World Championship, they’ve struggled to put together any kind of momentum since then. They finished 12th at Dreamhack Open Fall after falling to Godsent, 9th at CS Summit 6, and 7-8th at IEM New York Online. It’s possible that the team has had trouble adapting to the online reality that CSGO has become in the wake of the Coronavirus, but it’s clear that owner Carlos Rodriguez has had enough of the mediocrity and is looking to bring the CSGO team back up to snuff.
Niko’s Big Move
The reason this move is such a big deal for Niko, at least, is because he’s been with FaZe Clan for a very long time. He moved to the team in late 2017 after being a part of the Mousesports roster for about 2 years and has been with FaZe Clan since. During his time with FaZe, he won a number of BLAST Pro Series events, ESL One Belo Horizonte, IEM 13 Sydney, and placed second to Cloud9 at the ELEAGUE Boston Major, among other accomplishments.
“I’m really excited to announce that I will be joining G2 Esports,” Niko said on Twitter. “I can’t explain how happy I’m that I will be playing with Hunter and rest of the guys from now on. I’m coming to this lineup with the goal to bring them back to the top and make sure to stay there.”
To date, Niko has won about $750,000 in prize winnings over the course of his career, a number that’s only sure to keep going up as he continues to compete.
He has consistently been ranked in the top 12 players in CSGO every year by HLTV, placing 11th in 2019. He also holds the record for most kills in a map at a Major after scoring 52 kills against Flipside Tactics back at MLG Columbus 2016.
G2’s first match with Niko will be against Furia at the BLAST Premier Fall Regular Season in Group C on November 2. From there, G2 could continue to make roster changes based on their performance. They currently have a six-man roster, including Kennys, Jackz, AmaNek, Nexa, Hunter-, and now Niko. While some CSGO teams have operated with this sort of six-man roster, it could be that G2 Esports looks to drop one of their players to keep operating costs lean, especially with events not yet having transitioned back to a LAN format in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic.