Ever since they fielded a team in Dota2, Ninjas in Pyjamas have always competed in the European region. Back in 2015 they made their debut with a full Swedish line-up, and they’ve changed a couple of rosters through the years, but they never considered to change regions until now.
NiP’s previous season wasn’t too bad considering that they actually qualified for TI9 via Dota Pro Circuit points. But, except for the first Major in the season where they placed top 4, NiP always had to take the Minor into a Major route. The European region became the most stacked one last year, and the qualifiers for the Majors have been pretty challenging even for the top tier teams. Despite that, some of the biggest competitors in Europe decided to skip the first Major of the new competitive season. NiP started with a new roster put together by the team captain, Peter “ppd” Dager,but they still fell short in the first round of the qualifiers and are now bound to fight their way back via the Dota Summit Season 11, the first Minor of the 2019-2020 DPC season.
Ninjas in Pyjamas jumped into the long year battle leading to TI10 right from the start. They were present in Rotterdam last week, at DreamLeague Season 12, a non-DPC event where they finished top three. From there they flew to ESL One Hamburg, and so far they managed to pass the group stages, but they didn’t secure an upper bracket start for the playoffs, and they are now one series away from elimination.
Upon their arrival in Hamburg, NiP’s two supports, ppd and Malthe “Biver” Winther, sat down with Jake “SirActionSlacks” Kanner and openly talked about the team’s plan to make a region swap.
“I wouldn’t say that we are identified with any sort of region. I feel like this is kind of how it’s been these last couple of years for most of the North American-European teams,” said ppd who now has a roster made of three NA and two EU players. “We are planning to play in the NA qualifiers for the remainder of the season, so I guess now we are a NA team, but we have some EU roots for sure,” he added.
NiP are set to play for their survival at ESL One Hamburg 2019, today October 25, against Virtus.pro. Regardless of the result at this tournament, NiP will travel to Los Angeles to play in the Dota Summit Minor, and if everything will go according to their plans, it’s very likely that the team will settle somewhere in North America for the second Major qualifiers, which are scheduled for December 1-6.