It looks like Golden Guardians are loading up on talent for 2019. According to ESPN, the team is picking up Kevin “Hauntzer” Yarnell and Kim “Olleh” Joo-sung.
— ESPN Esports (@ESPN_Esports) November 26, 2018
Reports would come in after Team Solo Mid would replace Hauntzer with Turkish top laner Sergen “Broken Blade” Çelik. Additionally, Olleh is to join the team after being replaced on Team Liquid with Jo “CoreJJ” Yong-in. There were no indications from Team Solo Mid throughout the offseason that they would replace Hauntzer. However, it looks like they are trying to find a new player with tons of potential. However, Hauntzer will need to reacclimatize with his new team, as well as Olleh.
Team Solo Mid lets go of Hauntzer
Hauntzer has been playing for TSM for around three years, where he would have pretty good success. From the 2016 Summer Split through 2017, TSM would dominate the regular season and win the season. However, in 2018, the whole team would underperform, including Hauntzer. The team would fail to reach the Finals in both splits, and they would not even make it to Worlds. This would be the first time the team would miss Worlds in their entire history. However, Hauntzer has been a very key part of TSM’s success up until now. Not many people were thinking that they would take him off the roster completely.
Team Liquid replaces Olleh
As for Olleh, he has been underperforming on Team Liquid, even through their successful 2018. He would be a liability in multiple games for Team Liquid and would force their superstar ADC, Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng, to do a lot of heavy lifting. In response, Team Liquid would make some big acquisitions for the 2019 season. Olleh will need to learn how to play with someone else that isn’t Doublelift, which could be difficult in its own regard.
The new-and-improved Golden Guardians?
With Hauntzer and Olleh joining Golden Guardians, we should now look at their entire roster. Recently, the jungler Juan “Contractz” Arturo Garcia would re-sign with the team, filling the position. They would now have Hauntzer in the top lane, Contractz at jungle, Matthew “Deftly” Chen at ADC, and Olleh at support. They are still in the market for a mid laner, and they still have an import slot available. There are still some good mid laners overseas in Europe and Korea that could be interesting in this lineup.
However, building around Deftly and Contractz could end very good or very bad. Contractz was a pretty good jungler back on Cloud9 and if he can stay consistent with his play, he could be dangerous in the upcoming season. Additionally, Deftly had some moments of brightness last year, but was relatively underwhelming for a majority of his time on Golden Guardians. If he can grow well with this new roster, maybe Golden Guardians could surprise some people next year.
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