Cloud9 issued an official statement Tuesday on Twitter following up on the sudden release of former League of Legends head coach Nick “LS” De Cesare. The team’s initial announcement of his departure was made only a few minutes before Cloud9’s match against Counter Logic Gaming in the League of Legends Championship Series on Saturday.
— Cloud9 (@Cloud9) February 22, 2022
“Cloud9 throughout the years has developed systems on how we like to coach and operate our team,” Cloud9 CEO Jack Etienne said. “Despite our best efforts working with LS to try to come to terms and see eye to eye on how that should work, we were unable to make that actually happen.
“All players, coaches and management were aware of these issues and frustrations,” Etienne added. “Our mutual efforts to try to resolve them over the last several weeks, unfortunately, as time went on, it was really clear that we were unable to find a resolution and come together on figuring out this problem and we decided that it was important that we make a change and release LS at that point so we could move forward and focus on the future.”
LS has not yet commented on the specifics of his release. He did tweet following the initial announcement, saying:
“I set out to show some things were possible (gameplay/draft/etc) & in that short time I believe we were able to show a glimpse of it. Even though the journey ends, I still feel satisfied that the team & players were able to showcase what we had, and knowing alot more was possible
Since the initial announcement of LS’ release, the League of Legends community has been up in arms over a perceived lack of transparency and context around the situation. Since then, League personalities like Tyler “Tyler1” Steinkamp and Christian “IWillDominate” Rivera have voiced their frustrations on the situation. Cloud9 mid laner Ibrahim “Fudge” Allami also commented in an interview with Upcomer that the team would continue trying their best despite the decision coming as a shock.
“We want to recognize and thank LS for helping us create the roster and the staff that we have today,” Etienne said. “We also want to recognize the incredible intelligence and strategic mind that he brought to Cloud9.”
Cloud9 also addressed the timing of the announcement in the newly released video.
“We know that the timing of the decision wasn’t ideal,” Etienne said. “We would’ve loved to have had more time to create a larger PR statement before the game on Saturday. Unfortunately, we just did not have that time available to us, and we saw that it was best for our team and for our players to make that decision now versus let the frustration increase.”
Going forward, Cloud9 head coach Max Waldo voiced his full confidence in the team’s ability to improve despite the sudden change in staff. Adding that the team’s main priority is becoming good enough to be a major threat at Worlds.
Cloud9 jungler Robert “Blaber” Huang echoed the sentiment in the final remarks of the video.
“I’ve been with C9 for over 4 years now,” Blaber said. “I’ve gone through a lot of change with the team, and I’ve always trusted myself, Jack and my teammates to make the right decision moving forward. I really appreciated my time with LS, and I’m sorry to see him go, but I really believe in Max to move forward as the new head coach, and I think he’s going to do a really great job. I believe in my teammates, myself, and I know we’re going to do great going into the future regardless of what happens.”