Esport Legends: NEO
July 26, 2020

Esport Legends: NEO

Esport is so much more than just the game played competitively. Storylines, emotions, players and legendary moments all come together to give shape to our passion. Every week we will take a closer look at one of these. This week’s legend is NEO.

Filip “NEO” Kubski is one of the most renowned Counter-Strike players in history. With more than 18 years spent playing, his name is enough to put a smile on every fan indulging in nostalgia.

The greatest 1.6 player of all time

To understand just why NEO is considered a legend in the scne one only needs to look into the Counter-Strike history books. NEO was a key component of the “Golden Five (NEO, TaZ, LUq, kuben and loord), who dominated the scene in 1.6.

What made NEO so exceptional was his unique blend of gamesense, aiming and movement. His first breakthrough came during the World Cyber Games 2006. Together with his team the Poles won the world championship and began their meteoric rise to the top. The Golden Five would go on to win the WCG two more times while also collecting plenty of other trophies in their dominant run until 2012.

Organisations such as Meet Your Makers, AGAiN, Frag eXecutors, PENTAGRAM or ESC Gaming were all hosting the squad for various amounts of time.

Only a single Major title in CS:GO

2013 beckoned and with it the transition to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Although few could match the storied pedigree of NEO the new game had all the players start on even ground. It took a while until NEO found his home at Virtus.Pro 2014. The newly formed team consisting of long-standing partner TaZ, snax, byali and pashBiceps won several titles and were considered among the world’s best, but the in terms of the coveted Majors, they were only able to win a single one at EMS Katowice 2014.

The closest NEO got to repeating a Major win was during ELEAGUE Atlanta 2017, when Virtus.Pro barely lost out against Astralis 1-2 (16:12 | 14:16 | 14:16). Although Virtus.Pro and NEO won other titles such as ELEAGUE 2016 or EPICENTER 2017 and earned themselves the moniker “Virtus.Plow”, consistency was a permanent struggle. In March 2018 the old lineup also broke apart as TaZ was benched after more than 10 years playing together with NEO.

The permanent rollercoaster of ups and downs finally took its toll and NEO left Virtus.Pro in February 2019 after having been benched for two months.

s1mple instead of NEO

Although for many older fans a world collapsed with NEO’s departure from Virtus.Pro other, newer fans did not really feel the same. The legends of the current age are players like s1mple or ZywOo. Virtus.Pro’s once fabled Polish roster also faded into history as the players went their separate ways.

NEO never quite recoverd his form after exiting Virtus.Pro in 2018. Although he had a short return to prominence 2019 as a five month trial for FaZe Clan the lineup did not win anything during his tenure.

One last shot?

After FaZe Clan he went to the Polish team ARCY but success continued to elude him. Although he is now 33 years old NEO is willing to try again. Together with Wiktor “TaZ” Wojtas he launched a new organisation HONORIS and formed a new lineup of Polish hopefuls. Is this his final shot?

Since its inception HONORIS has had only middling results but even if this experiment fails again, NEO has achieved so much and paved the way for Poland’s esports scene that he is without a doubt worthy of being called a legend of esports.

Other Esport Legends:


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Bildquelle: Adela Sznajder / DreamHack, Valve
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