Aleksandar “Aleksandar” Hinojosa, Claudia “Clawdia” Che and Ronan “Osias” Javelona will depart from the team. The three former players were a part of Evil Geniuses’ inaugural VALORANT roster. They will be replaced by recent signings Daniel “roca” Gustaferri, Brandon “Branted” Ballard and Mike “Pho” Panza, who have joined the Evil Geniuses team.
EG peaked in VCT events at the round of 32 at Stage 2 Challengers 2 for the qualifying stage. In Nerd Street Gamers events, the team’s best placement was in the Summer Championship — Open 3 with a semifinals finish. The remaining members on the squad include in-game leader and captain Christine “potter” Chi and Nolan “Temperature” Pepper.
Please welcome the newest members of our #VALORANT roster!
Daniel “roca” Gustaferri
Brandon “Branted” Ballard
Mike “Pho” Panza
They compete for the first time TODAY in the NSG Summer Championship June Monthly. Give the newest Evil Geniuses a follow and wish them good luck! pic.twitter.com/L4gDe2Jiw1
— Evil Geniuses (@EvilGeniuses) June 28, 2021
Branted will join as the team’s flex, Pho as a flex and Controller player and roca as the new Duelist.
“Based on our team’s performance over the first two Stages of VCT, we felt changes were necessary to progress towards the level of success expected at EG,” said Andrew Barton, general manager for Evil Geniuses. “As members of our inaugural VALORANT roster, Aleksandar, Clawdia, and Osias will always have our thanks and appreciation for their commitment and hard work.”
Branted, Pho and roca before signing with Evil Geniuses
All three players have competed in the VALORANT scene on various teams and lineups, with each signed to an organization at some point. Branted was a part of Sedated from January 2021 to March. He then bounced around a few squads, most notably the amateur team Squirtle Squad in the VCT Stage 2 Challengers 2 qualifier. Pho started his career in 2020 and was signed with Built By Gamers for a time. He competed for the organization through First Strike: North America and VCT Stage 1.
As for roca, the former Counter-Strike professional played on Spacestation Gaming with their inaugural roster. He signed along with the majority of his free agent team Bloom in 2020. He stopped competing when the organization pulled out of the esport in April 2021.
The new team will debut in the Nerd Street Gamers Summer Championship and the first VCT Stage 2 qualifier this Thursday.