The seasoned Dota 2 player and 9Panda’s captain, Alexey “Solo” Berezin opened up about the team’s future and his hopes for the forthcoming season.
There has been a lot of speculation over the future of 9Pandas and its players in the Dota 2 community following their unimpressive performance at The International 2023. In the middle of the turmoil and controversy, 9Panda’s captain, Alexey “Solo” Berezin, released a video statement that addressed recent speculations about the team’s situation and his future in the Dota 2 scene.
9Pandas’ captain Solo hints at retirement
The 9Pandas’ inconsistent play throughout the season continued to be a source of worry and concern for its fans, with many even speculating that the team may break apart. The captain of 9Pandas recently issued a video statement to give much-needed clarification on the team’s goals amidst rumors and speculations.
Even though the squad didn’t do well at The Internationals, Solo denied rumors that the team would disband. Despite having a great start to their TI trip, 9Pandas were eliminated from the competition’s main event before it even got started.
The Last Dance 🔥 pic.twitter.com/XSy1MDPAsw
— 9Pandas Esports (@9pandasgg) November 1, 2023
After voicing concerns about the team’s future, the seasoned Dota 2 player discussed his hopes for the forthcoming season. Sadly, fans will have to deal with the star player’s “last dance” in 2023, though the statement left more questions than answers. The seasoned captain declared that this coming season would be his “last dance,” which prompted the question of whether he would continue to play or coach the team. If Solo chooses to go into a teaching capacity, 9Pandas would have to search for a worthy successor to step into his imposing shoes.
The Solo-led 9Pandas squad saw many highs and lows over the 2023 Dota 2 season, and in several instances, their inconsistent gameplay finally caught up to them. The squad was inconsistent throughout the year and was unable to turn any of the opportunities into a milestone, even though they attended all of the Majors and made it to The Internationals in 2023.
Following an impressive third-place showing at the ESL One Berlin Major 2023 and DPC Tour 3: Division I to start the season, the team’s performance collapsed as they were eliminated early from Dream League Season 19. Even though they were able to start well in their next tournaments, such as the DreamLeague Season 21, the Bali Major 2023, and the Riyadh Masters 2023, their uneven play prevented them from finishing in the top four or even taking home a championship.
After starting their TI mission in the upper bracket due to their success in the Group Stage and Seeding Decider, 9Pandas lost against LGD Gaming and were demoted to the lower bracket. The team subsequently suffered a devastating loss against the Gaimin Gladiators, who, in line with previous tournament trends, made it to the tournament final again before being annihilated by Team Spirit.