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In a shocking development to the team’s otherwise surging trajectory in the League of Legends Championship Series, Cloud9 announced the release of Head Coach Nick “LS” De Cesare a few minutes before the team’s match against CLG on Feb. 19. Going into the weekend, LS’s Cloud9 were sitting near the top of the standings with a 3-1 record.

“LS has been released from Cloud9 and Max Waldo has been promoted to the LCS Head Coach position,” said Cloud9 on Twitter. “We would like to thank LS for his contributions to the team and wish him the best.”

LS and Cloud9

LS’s initial signing with the legacy org was met with as much excitement as it was speculation due to controversy surrounding his outspoken strategic opinions and decisions pertaining to Cloud9’s 2022 starting roster.

LS was quick to silence haters within the first two weeks of LCS by successfully executing strategies he’s championed publicly, like Soraka and Ivern mid, on the LCS stage. Not only that, but LS’s drafting style seemed to make a significant impression on other teams in the league. Players like Immortals Academy mid laner Prodromos “Pretty” Kevezitidis have picked Ivern mid in official matches since Cloud9 showcased it on stage.

After beginning the LCS 2022 Lock In tournament with players substituted from the team’s Academy lineup, Cloud9’s full starting roster was finally ready to play in time for the start of the season. While LS’s unorthodox drafts stole the show at first, South Korean rookies bot laner Kim “Berserker” Min-cheol and support Kim “Winsome” Dong-keon put on standout performances alongside top lane veteran Park “Summit” Woo-tae as the team’s three newest members.

The specific reason behind LS’s release is not currently known. According to the former head coach, Cloud9 informed him of their decision approximately four hours before the posting of their official announcement.

Cloud9 will sound out Week 3 of the LCS 2022 regular season with a match against TSM, who are currently 1-4 in the standings.

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