100 Thieves debuted the latest version of their VALORANT roster during the Knights Monthly Gauntlet that took place from Feb. 22-23. This roster saw the addition of Noah “jcStani” Smith and Sean “bang” Bezerra in place of Adam “ec1s” Eccles and Hunter “BabyJ” Schline.
The organization made the sudden roster change on Monday after the team failed to defeat both Cloud9 and The Guard during the opening match of the VALORANT Champions Tour Stage 1 Challengers group stage. To practice with the new players before 100 Thieves’ upcoming match against Luminosity, the team boot camped in Dallas, Texas and ran through the Knights tournament.
While 100 Thieves came close to winning the entire tournament, they fell to TSM in the grand final and took home second place. The tournament may have only lasted two days, but there was a lot that 100 Thieves fans learned about the new form of the team.
Ethan on new agents as IGL
100 Thieves had a change in in-game leader after losing ec1s, moving the position to Ethan “Ethan” Arnold. With the switch in roles, Ethan took on new agents during the Knights tournament. Throughout the event, Ethan played both Sova and Chamber depending on the map, shying away from the Skye that he had recently been playing.
His ability to enter sites as Sova while also holding down sites as Chamber unlocks a new playstyle for him. While Ethan had been lethal on Skye, he seems more comfortable on the initiator/sentinel role that being the lead shot-caller has given him.
Bang alleviates pressure for Asuna
Bang joined the roster as the new youngest member of the team behind Peter “Asuna” Mazuryk and has showcased his ability to frag out. While he took over Ethan’s previous role as the Skye/initiator role for the team, fans were able to see what he was capable of on a duelist as well. The young gun was constantly hitting impressive shots and often taking over the map. This has taken pressure off of Asuna, who has been the main entry-fragger for the team in his role on duelists.
Young guns breathe new life into the team
When both BabyJ and ec1s were on the roster, the team’s play seemed stale and it looked like things were not clicking for the team the way they had before. This was obvious from the 13-0 loss to The Guard in the final match where no one on the team got above five kills. Now with two new, young players on the team things seem to be clicking better for the players. 100 Thieves may have not won the Knights Gauntlet, but they showcased what the team is now capable of with some adjustments to the roles and agents of the team. The true test will come when they face off against Luminosity on Feb. 27.