LNZ to play for NIP in IEM Summer as ztr returns to academy team
The 18-year-old Young Ninjas member has been promoted to the main roster as NIP continue their search for the right composition.
NIP have announced that academy team member Linus "LNZ" Holtäng will step into the main roster for the upcoming IEM Summer tournament, replacing Erik "ztr" Gustafsson, who is set to return to Young Ninjas. The Swedish side made the change shortly following their successful journey at Flashpoint 3, where they finished in second place to mousesports in their first official showing with Nicolai "device" Reedtz.
Head coach Björn "THREAT" Pers has explained that while ztr has made a great contribution to the team's recent successes, he believes that the 17-year-old needs more time to develop in the academy team, without "the pressure of having to deliver on the highest level."
"Erik [ztr] has contributed enormously to our recent success with great communication and energy, helping us to recover in dire moments," THREAT has stated. "However, I believe he needs some more time to develop as a player, which is why we’ve decided to let him play with Young Ninjas. This opens up an opportunity for LNZ, a gifted player who has been on the rise in Young Ninjas, to try his fortune on the main roster."
With LNZ stepping into the roster, NIP continue their search for the right roster composition, which currently features "a four-man core with a rotating slot filled from Young Ninjas." They have been utilizing that concept for the past four months, having promoted ztr to the main roster as a replacement for Simon "twist" Eliasson in early February, just a few weeks after the secondary team was formed.
LNZ joined the team to fill the void left by ztr and Young Ninjas have been steadily climbing the ranks in the meantime, reaching a 35th peak ranking in late May on the back of third place at BLAST Rising and successful qualification for Elisa Invitational Summer, with the 18-year-old averaging a 1.04 rating.
Björn "THREAT" Pers (coach)