Ninjas in Pyjamas and Threat: A Missed Opportunity

February 4, 2018 | 0 | 2903| |

Ninjas in Pyjamas is one of the most fan-loved teams in the entirety of counter-Strikee. They had an early start to fame in Global Offensive and continue to have players who are famous for their past deeds. However currently they are not a team that presents a threat to the top teams in the scene.

The past year saw NIP make changes to their roster, to their coaching staff and support staff in order to resuscitate the team’s fortunes. They have had several changes which include Friberg’s exit from the team.

NIP add Pita to replace Threat

The Ninjas recently made an announcement that they would Pita back to the organization as their coach. This announcement means that NIP will be replacing their current coach Threat.

Pers has now decided to step down as the coach for NiP to pursue other things in life

Threat was the brains on the team
Threat discussing tactics with Friberg and Xizt

As you can read NIP specifically state that it was Threat’s decision to step down from the coaching position. He wants to pursue other things in life and will not be able to devote the same amount of time to CS GO and esports in general.

The person stepping in for THREAT is a familiar face. We welcome back Faruk “pita” Pita to the coaching staff as Head Coach. For everyone following us since the early days of competitive CS:GO, the most notable achievements with Pita as coach was our Major Championship win in ESL Cologne and the two following Major grand finals at Dreamhack Winter 2014 and ESL One: Katowice 2015.


Threat and NIP

NIP won IEM Oakland 2017

NIP have had a quite successful history with Threat as their coach. The former Counter Strike 1.6 player returned as a coach for the Swedish giants. His inclusion into the team brought about an immediate turnaround in the Ninjas’ results.

Threat joined Ninjas in Pyjamas on the 1st of January, 2016. Following his addition, NIP started working hard on their tactical game. Soon we started seeing NIP have a great influence on their smokes, their coordination on certain maps. Cobblestone and Cache stood out as their strongest maps.

The Ninjas came out top in the ESL Pro League EU, Starladder Season 2, IEM Oakland 2016 tournaments. They also placed very deep in other tournaments such as Dreamhack Summer 2016. The team was considered to be a top team in Counter-Strike. It gave their fans a lot of hope of a NIP era comeback.

Valve spoiled the party

August 2016 saw Valve announce a decision which would change Professional Counter Strike. The coaching rule announcement ensured that coaching rules remain limited to preparation, support, opponent study, etc.

We intend the Majors and Minors to be events that can be won by any team of 5 players that demonstrate excellence in all skills of CS and this adjustment is intended to ensure that this remains true

The decision is vital to understanding Valve’s philosophy about how their game should be played. Normally Valve employs a very hands-off policy regarding Counter-Strike esports, however, they want to ensure a level playing field. If in-game calls and tactics are limited to five people on the server ensures that any group of five amateur players could rise up the esports ladder. This is essential for developing grassroots of the game.

It is a very thoughtful process, one which seeks to strengthen the esports side of the game. However, it is a rule that hurt several teams which rely on their tactical strengths to win their matches. NIP was one such team which was probably the most affected by this decision.

The Ninjas Poor Results

The initial months after hiring Threat had been successful for the team. But most of the success evaporated soon after The Coaching rule. The next year hardly saw NIP able to make an impact in any of their matches. It also saw them changing a player from the core roster. Friberg was replaced and NIP added two new players in Draken and Rez. The new look NIP definitely promising in some of their online matches.

Rez joined the team in June 2017 and the team started working on their playstyle. There was a

NIP Pita disappointed with teams performance
Will NIP stop making the mistakes in their matches?

a visible uptick in their performance, but not enough to compete with the top teams. This Ninjas in Pyjamas team in their form could not possibly compete at the top level consistently. However, they had a very strong and surprise win at IEM Oakland 2017. Defending their IEM trophy, NIP beat several strong teams en route to the championship.

But that win was a blip on the map for the team. They still do not look strong, although they are currently ranked #8 on rankings.


Future for NIP

There are rumors that Ninjas in Pyjamas are looking forth to a roster change. They will most likely be replacing Xizt. He has been a part of the core roster, but his recent performances have not inspired confidence. With NIP lacking the hard hitters on their roster Xizt is the only viable alternative to be replaced. The remaining two members of the core roster, Get_Right and F0rest are synonymous with the NIP brand by now. These two have also had decent performances recently, which do not warrant them to be replaced by the team.

Pita Coaching NIP
Pita has history with the NIP players

Ninjas in Pyjamas have brought back Pita as their coach. Pita is one of the earliest coaches in professional Counter-Strike. He has a synergy with the team and has helped the team through their initial successful years. In addition to Pita, NIP will need a hard hitter on the team. They currently lack firepower on their roster and with limited Swedish options available, the team has to look elsewhere for their newest member.

NIP missed an opportunity with Threat on their team. It was not really something they could control, since Valve came out with the coaching rules. We expect NIP to have some announcements very soon. We will let you know if there is further news about the NIP roster.


The author

Esports journalist. An esports fan, former wannabe pro and occasional angry young man. You can find him trying to climb the Dota 2 MMR or just chilling in Rocket League. Or maybe building an entire city in Cities: Skylines. The current mood is always a surprise.

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