After a prominent Dota 2 caster reported that 9Pandas are disbanding their Dota 2 roster, the Serbian organization has broken the silence
9Pandas have broken their silence to respond to the recent rumors about the disbandment of their Dota 2 roster, which emerged following their premature International 2023 exit.
The Serbians have publicly dismissed Vladimir “Maelstorm” Kuzminov's comments regarding the disbandment of their team post-The International 2023 as nothing more than a “Halloween story.”
9Pandas put out a short response to Maelstorm’s comments on Telegram.
“What a great Halloween tale you've come up with, Mael!”
Adding an element of humor, 9 Pandas complemented their response with a whimsical meme, playfully poking fun at Maelstorm's claimed insider information.
Photo Credit: 9Pandas Official on Telegram
What Did Maelstorm Say About the Future of 9Pandas?
A few hours earlier, Maelstrom took to Telegram to reveal 9Pandas have decided to press the reset button following their underwhelming TI12 campaign.
“Well, it seems the Pandas have disbanded. Maria Gunina, usually running around the team, was apart from the team, which made it difficult to call them a team at the tournament.”
He maintains that the team's failure to function cohesively during the championship was a paramount issue that significantly influenced their departure from the major Dota 2 event.
9Pandas had a rather challenging run at the International 2023, winning only two out of the seven series they played. Their journey began with a tough 2-0 loss against Team Spirit. They then managed to secure a tie with Entity, followed by their first victory against Team SMG in Seattle.
The team's fortunes seemed to be improving as they shared the spoils with Evil Geniuses and emerged victorious against Team BetBoom. Their brief unbeaten streak, however, was halted by LGD Gaming in the next match, and their ultimate downfall came at the hands of Gaimin Gladiators in Lower Bracket Round 2.
Rumors of 9Pandas Disbanding Gain Traction
Maelstorm is not the lone voice asserting that 9Pandas are on the brink of disbandment. Well-known Dota 2 reporter Arseny Kuzminsky has also added to the chorus of speculation by reporting that 9Pandas are preparing for a substantial roster reshuffle.
Post TI Roster Shuffle begins!
⚔️ GG release Quinn to Tundra
🛡 Entity -1
🇺🇸 Shopify -Arteezy (resigns from competitive) +K1
🐼 9Pandas almost full disband
🐴 Liquid -1 (not counting Zai)
Too raw to talk seriously, mostly afterparty stuff.
— Arseny Kuzminsky (@_koozya) October 31, 2023
Analyst Andrey “Afoninje” Afonin also believes that a major overhaul is in the cards at 9Pandas, with only Roman “RAMZES666” Kushnarev and Alexey “Solo” Berezin set to retain their positions in the lineup, while the remainder of the roster is slated for replacement.
“I think the current 9Pandas roster will be disbanded. I'm a hundred percent sure… The classic disband after TI. Then we gather the lineup: No[o]ne, Solo, RAMZES… Apparently, we'll have to buy No[o]ne from SMG. We'll get Lil. I see sense in this. I am their new coach, as we have already understood. And I say, ‘this is a disband'”
As per his information, the team is also looking to recruit No[o]ne from Team SMG, but he refrained from making any guesses about who might be considered to occupy the other two spots.