G2 esports retains star Counter-Strike talent after all

G2 esports retains star Counter-Strike talent after all
Image via ESL

Written by 

Sascha Heinisch


7th Nov 2023 14:28

Nikola "NiKo" Kovač has opted to remain with G2 Esports, rejecting an alleged high-stakes move to the Saudi Arabian esports organisation Team Falcons. 

Reports had suggested that Team Falcons were preparing a super team for the Counter-Strike 2 era, with NiKo as a primary target, backed by a million-dollar buyout. 

However, NiKo's concise announcement on social media first reported, "I stay," put an end to the speculation, confirming his commitment to G2 where he has contributed to multiple tournament wins since joining in November 2020​​​​​​.

Stuck in drafts



Despite reports by 1pv.fr of a done deal, the move fell through and the stage at which NiKo's transfer negotiations were disrupted remains uncertain.

With NiKo's retention, G2 Esports has signalled a strong intent to maintain their competitive roster, which has been a force in the Counter-Strike community, earning victories at prestigious tournaments like IEM Cologne and Katowice in 2023 and BLAST Premier World Finals in December of 2022.

The decision also hints at G2's ongoing preparations and commitment to the upcoming challenges in the new environment of Counter-Strike 2. According to a second report by 1pv.fr, Ilya "m0NESY" Osipov is also expected to stay with the team.

Falcons' market moves

On Sunday, Team Falcons announced that four players from its previous line-up would be moved to the inactive roster, making room for additional signings with the organisation.

At this time, only Jordanian player Mohammad "BOROS" Malhas remains on the active roster with Emil "Magisk" Reif reportedly following former Vitality head coach  Danny "⁠zonic⁠" Sørensen to the team.

According to a report by sheepesports, Marco "Snappi" Pfeiffer and Falcons have also come to a verbal agreement. 

If true, Team Falcons will require at least two additional players to complete their roster. The CEO of Team Falcons Mossad "Msdossary" Aldossary and zonic will be on the upcoming episode of HLTV confirmed, with the announced topics ranging from their goals and ambitions to questions of ownership for the team as well as talks on recent rumours and reports. 

Sascha "Yiska" Heinisch is a Senior Esports Journalist at GGRecon. He's been creating content in esports for over 10 years, starting with Warcraft 3.

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