Natus Vincere are reportedly on the brink of signing Ilya "Perfecto" Zalutskiy from Syman as a replacement for Ladislav "GuardiaN" Kovács, who has failed to impress with his performances since he re-joined NaVi earlier in 2019.
Rumours surfaced earlier this Thursday, claiming NaVi are close to making a deal with Syman which would see Perfecto join the CIS juggernauts as a replacement for GuardiaN. The fee for Perfecto is said to be in the region of US $200,000, however, no official confirmation has been made public yet.
Earlier this week, it was reported NaVi were acquiring to sign Evgeny "FL1T" Lebedev from forZe, however, the two CIS teams failed to reach an agreement, supposedly because ForZe were reluctant to let their 20-year-old star go for less than his release clause, which ultimately led to the deal not coming through. Later it was also said NaVi were looking to sign Igor "Forester" Bezotechesky from Hard Legion, however, even that deal did not come through, leaving NaVi empty-handed and in a search for another player to replace GuardiaN.
Their search for the fifth member, however, did not last for too long, as fresh reports suggest NaVi could sign Perfecto in the upcoming days, thus finalising their roister for 2020 season.
Perfecto will take over for GuardiaN, who is supposedly getting benched as soon as NaVi find a replacement due to his underwhelming performances and his lack of motivation to play at the level that is expected from him. Yet it was not always like that. GuardiaN played for the CIS squad between 2013 and 2017 when the AWPer helped NaVi win several tournaments, including ESL One New York in October 2016, but ultimately decided to leave the team in August 2017 to join FaZe.
After two years while playing under FaZe, GuardiaN returned to NaVi in September 2019, however, failed to recapture his old form and has slowly fallen out of favour with Oleksandr "s1mple" Kostyliev and company. His poor performances ultimately ushered NaVi to bench him and look for his replacement, which they supposedly found in Perfecto.
Perfecto has been a member of Syman since October 2018, when he joined the team together with Artem "iDISBALANCE" Egorov, who later left for Team Spirit.
During his time with Syman, Perfecto played a key role in the team's success, with their most notable achievement being the qualification for the StarLadder Berlin Major, where Syman finished 17th-19th after crashing out of the New Challengers Stage with a 2-3 record. Despite their early exit, however, Syman still made sure to leave a mark with their wins against FURIA and Vitality.
Besides Syan’s appearance at the Berlin Major, Perfecto also helped his team win NEST Pro Series 2019: Europe and NEST Pro Series 2019, as well as claim a bronze medal at QIWI Teamplay Season 4.
Due to his achievements, the 20-year-old Russian has been regarded as one of the most promising young players in the CS:GO scene. Over the course of the last three months, he has been averaging 1.25 rating, which helped him become noticed by other teams, most notably NaVi who are seemingly very keen on bringing him on board.
If Perfecto joins NaVi we can expect some role changes in the team. The Russian will step in the shoes of GuardiaN who has been assigned as the team's main sniper, taking the role away from s1mple, but obviously without much success. The arrival of Perfecto, however, could see s1mple pick up the sniper rifle once more, while Perfecto will take over the role of rifler, thus bringing some stability and consistency to NaVi in 2020 season.
NaVi CS:GO roster for 2020 (if the move is confirmed):
Egor "flamie" Vasilyev
Aleksandr "s1mple" Kostyliev
Denis "electronic" Sharipov
Kirill "Boombl4" Mikhailov
Ilya "Perfecto" Zalutskiy
Andrey "B1ad3" Gorodenskiy (coach)
Ladislav "GuardiaN" Kovács (benched)
Written by KrajnikT
Tit Krajnik (KrajnikT) is an esports writer for onlineesports.com, where he reports news, features and writes other content related to the players, teams, industry and the esports scene as a whole.
He has previously worked as a news and betting-related articles writer in the "traditional" sports scene but later opted to turn his attention to esports, where he managed to combine his love for video games and the growing esports industry with his work.
Krajnik has started his journey as an esports writer by covering Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and League of Legends, which he also played since its launch, but later broaden his skill-set to include other major esports titles including Dota 2, Fortnite, Apex Legends, Overwatch, Rainbow 6 Siege and Call of Duty.