Veteran in-game leader Gabriel "FalleN" Toledo stepped down from the MIBR Counter Strike: Global Offensive starting lineup on Sunday after the organization announced it had cut players Epitácio "TACO" de Melo, Fernando "fer" Alvarenga and coach and manager Ricardo "dead" Sinigaglia.
"I'm not satisfied with the recent decision," FalleN wrote in a post on Twitter. "Last weeks have been tough and challenging and that is why I'm asking to leave the active roster while I think on my next steps. This time will be necessary to find my essence and return the peace I need to decide my path, while I accomplish my contractual obligations. The only thing I'm sure is this isn't where the game ends for me."
The news to part with TACO, fer and dead comes after a controversial few months for the MIBR team. The team -- once considered the best in the world while playing under Luminosity Gaming and SK Gaming -- have underperformed throughout the bulk of 2020, including losses to teams ranked lower than 50 in the HLTV rankings in online events.
MIBR had previously suspended dead after two event organizers, ESL and Beyond the Summit, and the Esports Integrity Commission handed him three suspensions after he allegedly and knowingly exploited a spectator bug to cheat during the ESL One: Road to Rio Major qualifier and cs_summit 6. Dead will be barred from participating or coaching in ESL and ESIC-sanctioned events for the next six months and from the next two Beyond the Summit-run events.
"We are living in a moment where it is important for MIBR and MIBR fans to make changes and we will be making some adjustments to the roster over the next several weeks," MIBR said in a statement. "The rest of the MIBR roster will be retooling and getting ready for fall events including BLAST and Flashpoint 2."
FalleN stepping down and the release of fer, TACO and dead marks a significant moment for MIBR, as all four have been integral to the growth of the brand and are long-standing members of the team. All four were members of the Luminosity and SK roster that won the MLG Major Championship: Columbus 2016 and ESL One: Cologne 2016 titles, both which were Valve-designated Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Majors.
In 2018, Immortals Gaming Club -- the parents of Immortals, OpTic Gaming and the Los Angeles Valiant -- acquired that SK Gaming roster, led by FalleN, and relaunched MIBR, the legacy Brazilian Counter-Strike brand. Instantly it became among the most popular organizations in Counter-Strike, which has a large population of Brazilian fans. While the team has made changes over the years, including TACO's departure and then return, FalleN, fer and dead have remained a part of it.
For now, the MIBR roster consists of Vito "kNgV-" Giuseppe and Alencar "trk" Rossato. MIBR is scheduled to compete in the American leg of the BLAST Premier: Fall 2020 season beginning Oct. 22. Dates for Flashpoint 2, in which Immortals own a stake via organizer B Site, have not yet been announced.