It seems that roster changes are not the only thing you should expect to see this offseason. 100 Thieves has just announced that Sean Gares will be stepping down from his head coaching position on the 100 Thieves VALORANT roster. Although the news is sudden, and quite surprising, Gares reports that the decision has been on his mind for quite some time.
Why Did Sean Gares Step Down?
In the 100 Thieves announcement/update video, which was posted on all social medias related to the VALORANT team, Gares states that he did not have the time to pursue his passion for content creation while leading the 100 Thieves VALORANT team.
He thought that he would not miss content creation as much as he had during his time on the team, and cited his competitive drive as motivation to keep coaching despite his passion to work on projects outside of the team.
Despite his successes with the team, Gares felt that his real interests were working outside of the coaching umbrella. When addressing what led to his decision to step down Gares had this to say: “I definitely, obviously miss steaming, and creating content for my fans…I really missed casting and just being involved in the scene more, a lot of the things I used to do.
For those unfamiliar with his work, Sean Gares has been a part of the esports scene for quite some time. He originally started his career as a CS:GO (Counter Strike: Global Offensive) player, where he played for multiple teams including Complexity Gaming, Cloud9, and Misfits.
His rise to popularity, however, came from his accomplishments on the most successful Cloud9 roster to date. Alongside Michael “shroud” Grzesiek and Spencer “Hiko” Martin—a player and friend he would go on to coach during his time leading the 100 Thieves VALORANT roster—Gares led Cloud9’s 2015 lineup to win almost every CS:GO event in North America.
Gares retired from professional gaming in 2019. He went on to pursue content creation full time as a streamer on Twitch and a caster for both CS:GO and VALORANT content. 100 Thieves signed him to lead their team in March of 2022.
Alongside General Manager Daniel “ddk” Kapadia and Assistant Coach Michael “Mikes” Hockom, Gares spearheaded the rebuild around star player Peter “Asuna” Mazuryk that put 100 Thieves back into a competitive form following a long period of unsatisfactory performances.
Who Will Lead 100 Thieves Now?
With Sean Gares being such an integral part of the success of 100 Thieves this year, finding a replacement for him is no easy task. General Manager Daniel Kapadia, as well as some of the leading members of the 100 Thieves brand decided that the best person to take over his position was Assistant Coach Michael Hockom.
Hockom and Gares worked very closely together this year to achieve a high level of performance with the latest iteration of the 100 Thieves VALORANT roster. Kapadia had this to say about Hockom’s promotion:
Mike has been very important in every single category as far as coaching is concerned. So, when it comes to the talent development and working with the players individually to help them better themselves and to solve issues with them [sic], Mike has shown himself that he can really perform when it comes to the strategic aspect of the game as well. And when it comes to all of the other elements, understanding how to build the day-to-day, Mike doesn’t really miss a beat. So, despite the fact that the Head Coach title has carried a lot of weight and Sean has remarkable achievements that he’s done under that banner, I wouldn’t want the title of Assistant Coach to really minimize the contributions Mike has had as well. And, Mike is just another one of those very talented pickups on this team that is going to go very far in helping to make it a story of excellence all around.
When referencing the workload that Sean Gares’s exit would affect, Kapadia made it clear that the responsibilities of the coaching staff are best handled under the system that worked with Sean Gares where the team would have an assistant coach to help balance the large amount of work.
To facilitate that system with Hockom at the head coaching position, Kapadia announced that the team will hire another assistant coach to help with the workload. Although he did not mention any names, he did tease that fans of the 100 Thieves VALORANT team will “all be really excited by the prospects that we will be bringing to bear in the near future.”
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