Danish superstar Nicolai ‘dev1ce’ Reedtz is eager to leave NIP in the near future as he looks to return to Astralis, multiple sources have told Dexerto and 1pv.fr.
Dev1ce signed for NIP in April 2021 in the hopes of building a new legacy after winning practically all there was to win during his five-year tenure with Astralis.
But the Danish AWper has found success hard to come by in his new surroundings. He has won just one title this year – at IEM Fall – as NIP have failed to deliver on some of the biggest stages.
He looked deflated after NIP’s elimination from the BLAST Premier Fall Final at the hands of Liquid — a ‘dead’ team set to make changes — and was at a loss for words to explain his side’s performance in that post-match interview. He admitted to being “disappointed at myself” and said that there weren’t many things — not even the recent addition of Patrick ‘es3tag’ Hansen — that could soften the blow.
Dev1ce missed the team’s last two IEM Winter matches on recommendation from a doctor after complaining of feeling unwell. Just days later, NIP announced that the player would not attend the BLAST Premier World Final, the last event of the year, as he continued to recover from an unspecified illness.
In joining NIP on a three-year deal — a sign of his commitment to the project — dev1ce spoke of his desire to bring a Major title to Sweden and emulate NBA star LeBron James in winning trophies with multiple teams.
But despite the lofty expectations, NIP’s run at PGL Major Stockholm came to an early end. They were eliminated by G2 Esports in the quarter-finals and even came close to not making the arena portion of the event, only booking a playoff spot following a three-map thriller with Copenhagen Flames.
The pressure of achieving success with NIP has seemingly weighed heavily on dev1ce, who has looked more frustrated with each setback.
He had been the one to push for the transfer to happen, after all, expressing his wish to play for a team closer to his home in Stockholm, where he was living with his then-girlfriend, Emilia Hult.
Going through a rough patch lately and I just wanted to let you know that I appreciate the support you are giving me so much and I will try my best to not let you and myself down anymore
— Nicolai Reedtz (@dev1ce) December 3, 2021
The pair have since broken up, and sources have told Dexerto that dev1ce has moved to Copenhagen, where he has bought an apartment.
Fit like a glove
Multiple sources have told Dexerto that dev1ce has expressed an interest in leaving NIP to return to Astralis, the organization for which he won multiple international titles including four Major crowns.
Perhaps the biggest stumbling block to a potential transfer is the fact that NIP will want to recover some of the money they spent to sign dev1ce just eight months ago. The transfer fee was not disclosed by either organization at the time, but Astralis’ half-year financial report includes “other operating income” of DKK4.5 million (approximately $700,000). It is widely believed that this income is tied to dev1ce’s transfer to NIP.
Dev1ce’s return would allow Astralis to solve the biggest problem in their team — the lack of a world-class AWPer. Philip ‘Lucky’ Ewald was signed in July to help fill the void left by dev1ce’s departure, but in recent tournaments, Lukas ‘gla1ve’ Rossander has been the one responsible for AWPing duties.
Despite stating that gla1ve has not taken the AWP from him, Lucky finds himself on shaky ground, and dev1ce’s sudden availability could prompt Astralis to act, especially after the team ended the year on a disappointing note, finishing IEM Winter in 9th-12th place and BLAST Premier World Final in 5th-6th place.