Rainbow Six

The Rainbow Six roster moves that could pay off big this season

Rainbow Six roster moves are finalized with blockbuster deals shaking up the pro scene. With Pro League back in action, teams are finding their groove in the final stretch of Season 11. While some deals took the majority of the spotlight, here are three Rainbow Six roster moves that could pay off big.

Dimitri “Panix” de Longeaux – Natus Vincere

Dmitri “Panix” de Longeaux has been on a roller coaster for the past few months. He was part of a successful push by BDS Esport in December to qualify for the Six Invitational 2020. The French squad took big scalps at the European qualifier. BDS pushed past Team Secret, CHAOS and G2 Esports to earn their SI2020 qualifier spot.

But de Longeaux was removed just as his career was taking off with BDS, right before SI2020. He was dramatically kicked from BDS before the Invitational, and was replaced by Bryan “Elemzje” Tebessi. This is the second time this has happened to him, after helping PENTA qualify and then losing his roster spot. De Longeaux spent the first half of 2020 locked to the BDS org while waiting for a team to take a chance on him.

Dimitri Panix de Longeaux joins Navi after a Rainbow Six roster move

Rumors swirled that de Longeaux was in line for a spot with several European squads in the offseason. However it was Natus Vincere that scooped him off the open market. The team had just dropped Ellis “Pie” Pyart and saw Ben “CTZN” McMillan leave to G2 Esports. The team brought in de Longeaux and loan player Byron “Blurr” Murray to fill their roster for the second half of Pro League Season 11.

De Longeaux comes into Na’Vi during an important transition period for the squad. With Jack “Doki” Robertson still banned for toxicity, Na’Vi will have to try and make a name for themselves while they await his freedom on April 11.

The team sits in a four-way tie for last in the EU standings, nine points behind first place. De Longeaux has the chance to prove himself as a critical player and leader for Na’Vi as the org looks to the future. If de Longeaux can mesh well with the team, his acquisition could have been one of the best “bang for your buck” Rainbow Six roster moves. Let’s hope for his sake that he can avoid another kick before SI2021.

Matthew “Acez” McHenry – Fnatic

Okay, technically Fnatic adding Matthew “Acez” McHenry isn’t a new signing when he’s been the team’s rotating sixth man for a while now. But McHenry’s awaited return could be the jolt Fnatic needs to keep the promise they showed at SI2020. It’s the return of a skilled vet with a lot to prove.

McHenry made the transition to the pro R6 PC scene after starting as a pro Xbox player with Mindfreak in 2017. The squad broke out in early 2018 by advancing to the quarter finals of SI2018 and taking top spot in ANZ Pro League S7. McHenry and the Mindfreak core would stay together and sign with Fnatic in April of 2018.

They kicked things off by winning APACPL Season 7. Since then, McHenry has been a member of a Fnatic team always on the cusp of the next level of pro play. Fnatic has been dominant in ANZ pro play and a force to be reckoned with in the APAC region. However, Fnatic always seemed to slip internationally, never being able to truly break out until this year’s Invitational.

Fnatic stunned at SI2020, pulling off upsets against FaZe Clan, Team Empire and reigning champs G2 before finishing in 5th / 6th place. Success breeds jealousy, unfortunately – especially for Fnatic. G2 decided to pluck away Jake”Virtue” Grannan for its super team and left Fnatic with a hole in its roster. The team’s dedication to having a six-man paid off, with McHenry reclaiming his starting role.

While losing Grannan is a big blow to Fnatic’s plans for success, McHenry’s return brings another reliable veteran presence to keep Fnatic afloat. Expect big things if McHenry can hit his stride after all this time away from the starting roster.

Gabriel “cameram4n” Hespanhol – MIBR

After the way things ended for FaZe Clan at SI2020, it was clear changes were coming to the Latin scene. FaZe entered SI2020 as one of the top Brazilian squads. They stumbled against Dark Zero to start the tourney. But FaZe Clan had Fnatic by the hair in loser’s match for Group A. FaZe took the first half of the final map 5 -1, putting Fnatic on the ropes and almost securing the series.

Key word: almost. Fnatic found life on defense and won six straight rounds to stun FaZe Clan. Just like that, FaZe’s run at SI2020 was over. After looking so dominant over Fnatic, Rafael “mav” Loureiro Freitas and his squad were sent home packing.

MIBR acquires Gabriel cameram4n Hespanhol in a Rainbow Six Roster move

On the other hand, FaZe’s regional rival MIBR looked a little sharper at SI2020. They surprised by pushing out of Group B over the favorite Team Liquid. While they dropped out in the quarter finals, they certainly exceeded expectations. This small success made snagging FaZe star Gabriel “cameram4n” Hespanhol that much easier.

Hespanhol is a veteran of the R6 LatAm scene, and was a long time member of FaZe Clan. He helped FaZe win three consecutive LatAm Pro League seasons. However, FaZe found mixed success at international events. The team was able to hold their own globally, but couldn’t find that extra push to go deep at events like the Invitational.

With Vitor “hugzord” Hugo returning to Black Dragons, Hespanhol could be the extra firepower needed to push MIBR forward. After the team’s moderate success at SI2020, MIBR is in a good position to come for the Brazilian crown. Look for Hespanhol to hit the ground running with MIBR as they chase the top spot in Latin America.

There were plenty of solid roster moves made this Rainbow Six Siege Pro League off season. Secret, Reciprocity, Cloud 9 and, of course, G2 Esports, all made moves to shore up rosters for the final S11 stretch. Think there’s another transfer who could be make or break this season? Let us know in the comments below. Stay tuned to SQUAD for more coverage of Rainbow Six Pro League.

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Matthew Murray

Matthew Murray is a Canadian writer, journalist and public relations specialist. PC gamer, fan of FPS and RPGs. Follower of several esports titles including Rainbow 6, Overwatch and CS:GO. Every software or game he touches will magically have inexplicable issues somehow.
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