In a surprising turn of events, Blacklist Rivalry has decided to make a quick change to its Dota 2 roster ahead of the upcoming ESL One Birmingham SEA Qualifier. After parting ways with Filipino veteran Marc “Raven” Fausto not long ago, the Philippine esports organization commenced its new plans with the introduction of head coach Kim “Dubu” Doo-young.
Dubu’s return to the Philippines after an absence of nearly five years adds an intriguing element to the team. His previous tenure at Fnatic from 2018 to 2019, both as a player and coach, showcased his prowess in navigating top-tier competitions such as The International 2015, ESL One Katowice, and DreamLeague Season 11. After a hiatus from the SEA region, he traveled extensively across Western Europe and North America until 2022, deciding to make a comeback to SEA.
Dubu’s recent full-time stint with Bleed Esports in Singapore, spanning from December 2022 to November 2023, witnessed a fluctuating competitive season. While achieving a momentary surprise by topping the standings in the DPC SEA Tour 3 last year, he and his teammates fell short of replicating their success at the Bali Major 2023.
Despite the ups and downs, Blacklist Rivalry’s fanbase, well-acquainted with Dubu’s track record, has greeted the news positively. Fans are eagerly anticipating Dubu’s magic in the upcoming competitions. There is also speculation that his influence could have a positive impact on Abed “Abed” Yusof, a longstanding friend from their time together at Fnatic.
And speaking of magic, Blacklist will certainly need it to break the curse of inconsistency that has been cast upon its players. Despite recent positive results in the Acer Predator competition, the team has struggled to advance through the qualifying rounds of major competitions scheduled for the near future.
As the qualifying schedule approaches, Dubu is expected to be joined by a new carry player, with an official announcement to follow. Given their commitment to “Filipino pride,” the prospect of Blacklist relying on a player from outside the Philippines seems unlikely.