Following their traumatic upset losses to both Rise and Cloud9 Blue in the North American Valorant Championship Tour Last Chance Qualifiers (NA VCT LCQ), the former #2 ranked NA team needed a major overhaul. Widely considered to be one of the top teams in the world and a close rival to the NA and world #1 Sentinels, it came as a huge surprise to see 100 Thieves fall to two off of the radar teams in Cloud9 Blue—who went on to win the NA LCQ and qualify for the 2021 VALORANT Champions over 100 Thieves—and Rise.
Prior to their tournament upset, 100 Thieves had already made a major roster change in their transition of IGL (in-game leader) Joshua “steel” Nissan to the bench. With such an important player being transitioned to the bench, the role of IGL fell onto the CS:GO legend and American prodigy Nicholas “nitr0” Cannella. Nissan was subsequently replaced by Aaron “b0i” Thao who filled in for him for the 100 Thieves NA LCQ losses.
100 Thieves Release Coach FrosT
After days of rumors of ex-coach Hector “FrosT” Rosario’s departure from the team, 100 Thieves posted an official statement on their Esports Twitter account that read as follows:
“Today, we have made the decision to part ways with our VALORANT coach @FrosTvsYou. FrosT’s leadership and relentless dedication to our team and players over the past year is extremely appreciated. We wish Hector the best in his future endeavors.”
Rosario, who signed with the organization back on January 20th of this year, was released after less than a year with the team, leaving an open coaching position and a few words of his own on his Twitter account:
“I’ve been part of 100 Thieves Valorant since day 1 w/@Hiko. Winning First Strike was a thrill, but I’m saddened we didn’t achieve a world title together. I wish everyone the best of luck & I’ll still be seeking a world title in Valorant. Unlucky really.”
nitr0’s Future Uncertain, With Potential CS:GO Return on the Table
After years of CS:GO dominance, over $2,275,000 in tournament earnings, and countless tournament victories under his belt, Nicholas “nitr0” Cannella announced his retirement from the CS:GO scene and transition to VALORANT after signing with 100 Thieves in August of 2020. Following their abysmal NA LCQ performance and subsequent removal from 2021 Valorant Champions contention, rumors are swirling around about a potential return to CS:GO for the decorated veteran.
This is of particular worry for the 100 Thieves roster moving into 2022, as Cannella took on the role of IGL following Nissan’s transition to the bench earlier this year. Although nothing is official, if nitr0 were to return to CS:GO one of his primary options would be Team Liquid: the organization he earned millions of dollars for over his prolific CS:GO career.
Although major roster changes would hopefully yield better results for the future of 100 Thieves in VALORANT, filling Cannella’s shoes is no easy task. Even though 100 Thieves won’t be in attendance, keep an eye out for the upcoming 2021 VALORANT Champions tournament starting in just under a month on December 1st.
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