The International is incomplete without the drama. And this year's thing was N0tail vs Fly. This was noticed by the casters as well as they yelled out on the mic “Ohhh that look from notail” when N0tail shook hands with Fly after their Best of 3 series.
OG has been among the best teams for last few years. It was built around N0tail and Fly. These two are known as Dota brothers, not just teammates. They are or I should say they used to be a family. They played together since the days of Heroes of Newerth or maybe even before. 10 years of friendship, brotherhood came to an end when Fly decided to leave OG and join EG just before the qualifiers.
They created a team with smart ideas. Together the two geniuses went on to win Majors after Majors but they never won what they wanted to win. The International Championship of Dota2. They played together even before OG was created. They played with Puppey and a lot of different rosters but failed to achieve anything. OG was the team they tasted success with 4 majors and multiple other LAN events. They proved themselves as a team but somehow they always choked on the bigger stage. Post TI7 Resolut1on joined them but they were not compatible. They failed to match each other’s excellence and as a result, the team was not doing well. OG then waited a year for the 5th member that never came up. In this scenario when the team was already suffering, Fly and s4 decided to join EG to create a super roster with Sumail and Rtz.
This was a blow to team OG and a very personal blow to N0tail. OG is a team that always talks about being a family, unity and that is exactly how they work too. They think of their team as a family, being close to each other and being each other’s friends means everything to them. But for some of the players at the end of the day winning a LAN tournament matters the most. Some players prefer a successful career over a successful and happy family.
In an interview, Fly was asked why he took the decision to leave OG and this is what he had to say, “Speaking for myself, I started losing motivation when we lost a lot and I couldn’t see a good way to fix the team. There was a situation with Resolution that ended with getting 7Mad (Ceb) into the team. The switch wasn’t really something everyone agreed upon and when all the players are not on the same page, the team is not going to play well. In the end, I decided to do what was best for myself, where I saw an opportunity to join a team I believe in and can see myself winning TI with.”
He added, “It was a very difficult decision. It was one of the hardest decisions I have ever made in my life. Things have not really been resolved between us and I did not part in the best way possible. I have some regrets about how things were handled, but everything was rushed as TI qualifiers were basically in two weeks. I hope these things will be resolved somewhere down the line..but yeah, it was hard.”
OG was supposed to have a very hard time without those two playmakers but somehow what happened next was amazing and definitely something nobody expected. Their carry player shifted to support, their Midlaner shifted to carry, they picked up a random player from the pub as their Midlaner and appointed the coach as their Offlaner and next thing we know they are the new world champions. The perfect fairytale ending for N0tail. They won the Open Qualifiers, the Regional Qualifiers, cleared the group stage and made an amazing Upper Bracket run and won the championship.
When Sheever asked N0tail about the whole situation in team interview he calmly replied “I’m actually not willing to talk about it. It’s uh, something for later.” Sheever asked again, “Can you tell us why you don’t want to talk about it so we all can leave you alone about it?”. He replied back with, “It’s personal. It’s nobody’s business.”
While EG with Fly and s4 managed to finish 3rd in the tournament N0tail and his team managed to be the champions. While their friendship and brotherhood was a meme in the community but now their rivalry has turned out to be the same. Both of them are not willing to speak about it on a personal level, only time will tell what happens next.