The New Cloud9 Roster Has Immense Potential but Needs Time

July 4, 2019 | 0 | 1608| |

The Cloud9 organisation is one of the most respected organizations in North American esports. Their CS: GO roster was the first North American team to win a CS: GO Major, a rare feat for the region. However, post the Boston Major, Cloud9 lost a few players and were never the same again. 

Dekay from Dexerto reported[1] that Cloud9 is most likely to pick up a new roster. Cloud9 later confirmed the report with their official roster change announcement.[2] The current active roster is unable to produce quality results and their failure at the Minor qualifiers hastened this decision. 

After our disappointing run during the minor qualifiers, we had a couple of options. We could either wait until after the major ended to see what kind of options we would have or we could try to rebuild now completely from scratch. We chose the latter and started with the IGL. Once we had daps, we discussed what kind of style he would like to play and looked for players that were available to make that a reality.

Valens to HLTV

The New Cloud9 CS: GO roster:

  1. Timothy “autimatic” Ta
  2. Damian “daps” Steele
  3. Oscar “mixwell” Cañellas Colocho
  4. Kenneth “koosta” Suen
  5. Tyson “TenZ” Ngo

Timothy is the only player who was not the latest addition. He is a long-standing member of the Cloud9 organization. The new Cloud9 roster was a top-down approach by the organisation. They approached the roster and brought on Daps as soon as he lost his IGL position to Stanislaw[3] on NRG.

Why is this Cloud9 roster special?

Cloud9 had two paths to form a new roster after their failed attempt to qualify for the Americas Minor[4]. Their previous roster was not doing well and the chances of the team putting up strong results were minimal. Cloud9’s two options according to Valens:

  1. Wait till after the Major to form a strong roster
  2. Build up a roster from the Ground Up 

The Cloud9 organisation was not afraid to let go of their Major spot when they made the changes earlier this year. They lost their Major spot due to the roster change. The failure of the new team to qualify for the Berlin Major was the last straw and necessitated the current roster change.

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The new roster will be seen live in action at the Blast Pro Series: Los Angeles 2019[5]. The format of the tournament will not truly show us their true potential. However, it will definitely give us a glimpse into the team’s performance and possible improvements in the future. 

Versatile Players Lead to a Stronger Team

Koosta. Image Via: HLTV

Koosta and Mixwell are the spearheads of the firepower on this roster. Both the players have had a great run in North American Counter-Strike in the past. Koosta has played on several North American organisations in the past. His time on Ghost Gaming saw him take on a pivotal role in their gameplan. 

Koosta's statistics over the past few years
Koosta’s statstics over the past few years. Photo via: HLTV

His statistics[6] over the past few years have been very inconsistent. At times, he seems to be the best player in the North American region. However, in other instances, Kenneth has slipped his performance to below nominal. We can see from his graph how Koosta has not maintained his peak performance. But then, no one can really maintain their peak levels. Even at his worst, Koosta is well above many other players maintaining at least a 1.0 HLTV rating. 

He does not have a high headshot percentage, and most of his kills have been against much weaker opponents. However, it is his positioning and movement on the map which grants him the advantage. It is not easy to strategise against him, as his timing is impeccable. He can play on multiple roles such as the AWP as well as the rifle. His free movement between the two roles allows Cloud9 the flexibility in their roster. 

The Other End of Cloud9 Firepower

Mixwell ( Movistar Riders)
Mixwell joined Cloud9 in their latest roster update.

The new Cloud9 roster is not limited or held back by Koosta’s firepower. In fact, they have another angle to their front-lines in Oscar “mixwell” Cañellas Colocho. The Spanish Player has moved on from his time on X6tence and played for G2 Esports as well as Optic Gaming. 

He might not have as high a skill ceiling as Koosta, however, Mixwell is able to provide the flexibility to the team. He is fluent with the AWP as well as the Rifle. The new Cloud9 roster was ‘picked’ by Daps after the organisation gave him free rein to choose the players. While the existing players might not be the best in the region, Daps has a speciality in helping such teams rise to the top[7]. His performance in leading NRG helped them to rise to the Top 10. He was unable to fit into the team once they reached the top and that was because of his individual performance. However, as an In-Game Leader, there is nothing with the player’s approach to the game. 

On his new team, Mixwell will need a leader to groom him to fit into the new roles. All the players on this roster come from diverse backgrounds and different teams. Many of them have never played against or with each other. 

The New Roster: Short on Time

Daps on Team NRG
Daps helped NRG rise several ranks under his tenure.

The different nature of the players’ background makes Daps’ role on the team even more important. He has been in these shoes before, he has been able to help NRG rise several ranks under his guidance. Daps is an adept leader focussing on the positives for each player. 

His ability to position his teammates in positions of strength is what brings out the best in those players. The early period for Cloud9 is extremely important, especially cause of the volatile nature of the roster in the early periods. There are not many tournaments separating the roster’s formation and their first match. Fortunately ( or unfortunately ) for them, they will not be participating in the upcoming Berlin Major. Cloud9 will play their next match at the Blast Pro Series: Los Angeles 2019. 

For now, Cloud9 fans definitely have a chance at improving their rankings significantly. Daps is the perfect In-Game leader to help the team in the upcoming months. Between all the star players on the team, is Tenz a player who will provide stability to the team in more ways than one. 

The author

Esports journalist. An esports fan, former wannabe pro and occasional angry young man. You can find him trying to climb the Dota 2 MMR or just chilling in Rocket League. Or maybe building an entire city in Cities: Skylines. The current mood is always a surprise.

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