Cloud9

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Cloud9
Cloud9 logo.svg
Short nameC9
Divisions
FoundedJanuary 8, 2013 (2013-01-08)
Based inLos Angeles, California
LocationUnited States
CEOJack Etienne
EarningsUS$9.21 million[3]
WebsiteOfficial website Edit this at Wikidata

Cloud9 (C9) is an American professional esports organization based in Los Angeles, California. It was formed in 2013, when CEO Jack Etienne bought the former Quantic Gaming League of Legends roster. Following the success of Cloud9's League of Legends team in the North American League of Legends Championship Series, the team began expanding into other esports. In 2015, Cloud9's Heroes of the Storm team won the first Heroes of the Storm World Championship, becoming the inaugural winner of the championship.[4] In 2018, Cloud9's Counter-Strike: Global Offensive roster became the first and only North American team to win a Major after defeating FaZe Clan 2–1 in the ELEAGUE Major: Boston.

History[edit]

Cloud9 has its origins in the League of Legends team of Orbit Gaming, which had several current C9 team members.[5] After Lone Star Clash in November 2012, members of Orbit Gaming signed with Quantic Gaming, which had only been sponsoring a StarCraft II team. Quantic Gaming was an esports team and media company founded in 2010 by Simon Boudreault, a Quebec native who had come upon a large inheritance upon the death of his father and decided to invest nearly all of it in esports.[6] During its existence, several players and coaches claimed that they consistently missed payments from Boudreault.[7] When QG failed to make the 2013 LCS Spring split, Boudreault cut off contact with society and soon dissolved the company.[citation needed] Despite being owed tens of thousands of dollars, former players say they are no longer considering legal action against Boudreault. Former Team SoloMid manager Jack Etienne bought the team for US$15,000 in May 2013 and also became its manager.[8][9]

In July 2014 the C9 Smite team disbanded just before the start of the Smite Pro League.[10] On May 6, 2014 Cloud9 signed Super Smash Bros. Melee player Mang0.[11] Cloud9 acquired compLexity Gaming's Counter-Strike: Global Offensive team in August 2014. The team left compLexity after it received a better offer from C9 before renewing their contract with their previous team.[12] Cloud9 announced the formation of a Challenger Series team and held open tryouts.[13] On November 26, 2014 Cloud9 added a Halo team by acquiring The Agency, which boasted several experienced players.[14] In December 2014 Cloud9 withdrew their Dota 2 team from the Chinese I-League because of concerns over poor playing and living conditions and were subsequently banned for the next seasons for doing so.[15] In February 2015 Riot suspended C9 Tempest after it was revealed that the team had illegally used a non-roster member during a game.[16]

League of Legends[edit]

Cloud9
GameLeague of Legends
Founded2013
Division titlesNA LCS: Summer 2013, Spring 2014, Spring 2020

History[edit]

2012[edit]

During the off-season, the Quantic Gaming organization went bankrupt and shut down operations, leaving its League of Legends team without a sponsor. Competing first under the name Team NomNom and then Cloud9, Nientonsoh, Hai, Yazuki, Wild Turtle and LemonNation secured a spot in the Season 3 North American Offline Qualifier for the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS).[7] However, Cloud9 was knocked out of the tournament in the group stage after losing to Azure Gaming and future LCS team Team MRN in a close base race.[7]

Initially, Nientonsoh said that Cloud9 would disband in light of the loss. The team later decided to stay together, although Nientonsoh and Yazuki left the team.[7] Hai shifted from jungle to mid, and the team tried out new junglers and top laners in online competitions.

2013[edit]

On April 1, the Cloud9 roster of Balls, Meteos, Hai, Sneaky, and LemonNation was reacquired by Quantic Gaming, now led by former COO Bernie Catalan. However, just a few weeks later the roster would once again become Cloud9 with previous TSM manager Jack Etienne becoming the manager and owner of the team.

On May 17, C9 placed first at the 2013 MLG Winter Championship Summer Promotion, defeating Velocity esports 2–1 in the finals.

In the Summer Promotion Qualifier, Cloud9 went 5–0 to earn a spot in the LCS Summer Split, beating Team Astral Poke 2–0, and former LCS team compLexity 3–0.[17] Midway through the season, Cloud9 went on a 13-game win streak, the 2nd longest in LCS history.[18] They went on to earn 25 victories, the record most in an LCS season split, and won first place in the Summer Split regular season. Throughout the NA LCS Summer Playoffs, they won every single one of their games and sets, first against Team Dignitas, and then the grand finals against TSM 3–0.[19] Cloud9 took home US$50,000 as well a first round bye at the Season 3 World Championship. They finished their season 3 LCS and playoffs with a 30–3 total, the second highest in LCS history and with a 91% win rate.

C9 went into the Season 3 World Championship quarterfinals with a first round bye as the North American champions. Their first international match was against the top European seed, Fnatic.[20] Cloud9 lost the set 1–2, being the last North American team to be eliminated and ending up in 5th-8th place.[20]

On November 24, C9 competed at IEM Season VIII - Cologne. They went straight to the semifinals with a first round bye, but lost to Gambit Gaming 2–1.[21]

On October 29, the organization announced the departure of coach Alex Penn and the addition of Dan Dinh as Penn's replacement.[22]

In December 2013, Cloud9 joined four other North American LCS teams at the Battle of the Atlantic, facing European champions Fnatic for the second time. With dominating performances by mid laner Hai, Cloud9 took the series 2–0, resulting in an overall North American win at the tournament and US$10,000 for the team.

2014[edit]

As a top five finisher in the Season 3 LCS Summer Split, Cloud9 earned a berth in the 2014 Season Spring Split, which began on January 17. After having trailed just behind Team SoloMid after the first week, Cloud9 finally regained first place by defeating TSM in week 7. They would go undefeated afterwards (equaling their previous 13 win streak record) and finish first place for the regular Spring Season and securing a spot in playoffs. Cloud9 would repeat their 2013 Summer Playoff success with a 2–0 victory over Team Curse in the semi-finals, and a 3–0 against TSM in the grand finals on April 20.[23] Their LCS playoffs victory earned the team a spot in the 2014 All-Stars. Cloud9's LCS success had resulted in a record regular season win percentage of 87.5% (49-7) and 89.4% including playoffs (59-7).

On April 28, Hai suffered a collapsed lung, which prevented him from attending the All-Star event in Paris.[24] CLG's Link replaced him on the lineup.[25] In group stage, the team defeated OMG, Fnatic, and Taipei Assassins, but lost to SK Telecom T1 K, finishing 2nd with a 3–1 record. In the playoff semi-finals, Cloud9 lost to OMG to finish 3rd-4th in the tournament.

Cloud9's several international encounters with Fnatic in late 2013 and early 2014 has resulted in a rivalry between the two teams.[citation needed] Cloud9 currently has a 5–4 game record and a 1–2 series record against Fnatic, winning the Battle of the Atlantic while losing at IEM and the Season 3 World Championship.

As the winner of the previous LCS split, C9 automatically qualified for the summer split of the LCS, which began on May 23. Cloud9 faced unprecedented competition and briefly found themselves in fifth place at 10–8.[26][27] However, with an 8–2 record in the last 10 games to finish the season, the team leapfrogged struggling top competitor LMQ by holding the tiebreaker at a record of 18–10.[28] With the first-place position, Cloud9 qualified for Summer Playoffs as the top seed.[29] There, Cloud9 first faced Team Curse, a team against which they held a 3–1 record, and continued this success by sweeping Curse 3–0. Advancing to the finals, Cloud9 hoped to extend its unprecedented playoff win streak of thirteen games against Team SoloMid. TSM made history by ending Cloud9's streak and winning its second LCS playoff, while C9 settled for second place and a berth in the Season 4 World Championship.

During the World Championship group stages, due to Balls and Hai excelling, C9 became the first North American team to ever beat a Korean Team at the World Championship by taking down NaJin Shield.[30]

After Worlds, Cloud9 beat Alliance in a 2–1 victory and crushing Unicorns of Love 3–0 to win IEM Season IX San Jose, becoming the best team in two western regions for the third time.

2015[edit]

For the first time C9 had dropped their first three games in the new Season of the LCS, eventually falling to an unfamiliar 10th place. Soon C9 took down second place CLG and then proceeded to defeat through TSM, Gravity, and CLG a second time in the fastest 27 minute win of the split, automatically advancing them to Semi-Finals. Like in the previous Summer Split and right on time Cloud9 rallied excelling with uncommon picks coming from behind and making their way to second place and tying with rivals TSM for first place. Balls, Meteos, and Sneaky all took top players in week 9 in their respective roles. With Sneaky taking first place overall, a familiar place for Sneaky considered to be the best and most consistent ADC in North America.[7]

At IEM Katowice World Championships, C9 was beat by the GE Tigers.[31]

Cloud9 finished 2nd in the Spring LCS Regular Season with a 13–6 record.[32] Cloud9 met TSM in the finals of the LCS Spring playoffs but lost three games to one.[33] It was the fourth consecutive LCS final that featured the two teams.[33] In May, Hai officially retired from the team, citing chronic hand pain. Hai transitioned into a role as Chief Gaming Officer.[34] On March 8 Incarnati0n joined the team and replaced Hai on the starting roster.[35] The team struggled through the season due to issues with shotcalling, as Hai had been the primary shotcalled. The team dropped down to 8th place, in danger of relegation until July, when Meteos steps down and Hai rejoined the team in the jungle.[36] With Hai, they were able to win enough games to rise to 7th place, high enough to avoid relegation, but not high enough to make playoffs.

Cloud9 beat Team 8 in a tiebreaker match in order to qualify for the gauntlet bracket for the third North American seed in the Season 5 World Championship. In the gauntlet they faced off against Team Gravity, Team Impulse and Team Liquid. They beat Team Gravity and Team Impulse by 3–2 reverse sweeps, and beat Team Liquid by 3–1. Their journey from 7th place in NA to the world championship showed how much Hai's leadership impacted the team's performance. By winning the gauntlet, Cloud9 earned North America's third seed to Cloud9's third consecutive world championship.

At worlds, Cloud9 was placed in Group B with Fnatic, ahq, and Invictus Gaming. Cloud9 was a heavy underdog and was expected to come in last. Shockingly, they went an undefeated 3–0 in the first week, defeating every team in their group. In the second week, they only needed one win to move on to the next round of the tournament. They dropped 3 games in a row, as well as losing a tiebreaker game against ahq, leaving them in third place in their group and eliminated from the tournament.

In the offseason, LemonNation retired.[37] Cloud9 announced the signings of two new players, jungler Rush and substitute support Bunny FuFuu. Hai changed positions once again, switching to Support.[37] Cloud9 stated that Hai would be playing during the beginning of NA LCS Spring Split, with the intention of teaching BunnyFuFuu, who will overtake Hai some time during Season 6. In December, Incarnati0n announced he was changing his gamer name to his real name, Jensen. The new roster debuted at IEM X Cologne, where they lost 2–1 to H2K and were eliminated.

2016[edit]

BunnyFuFuu and Hai alternated as support for the first 2 weeks of the split, but then Hai took over as full-time support due to poor results. Cloud9 finished 3rd in the regular season with a record of 12-6 but faced a disappointing loss to Team SoloMid in the quarterfinals. After failing to achieve the result they wanted, the team made a few roster changes in between splits where the main roster became Impact, Meteos, Jensen, Sneaky, and Smoothie/Bunny FuFuu, with the addition of Reapered as coach. Cloud9 also formed a challenger series roster with Balls, Rush, Hai, Altec, and LemonNation.

Cloud9 started the split slow, with Bunny FuFuu and Smoothie alternating in the support role. Bunny FuFuu then stepped down from the starting roster, giving Smoothie the starting support role. Cloud9 ended the season strong beating Team EnVyUs (3–1) in the quarterfinals and Immortals (3–2) in the semifinals, but dropping to Team SoloMid in the finals (1–3). They moved to the gauntlet for the Regional Qualifiers where they beat Team EnVyUs (3–0) and Immortals (3–1) giving them the #3 seed for North America in the 2016 World Championship.

Cloud9 Challenger did well in the challenger series and qualified for LCS Season 7. Rush then announced he was leaving Cloud9 Challenger and returning to his home in South Korea, to stream and look for opportunities on a Korean team.

On September 20, 2016, Cloud9's coach Reapered's Twitter account was compromised by hackers who published Cloud9's competitive scrimmages, account logins, chat logs, and contact information for several NA LCS team members.[38]

At the 2016 World Championship, Cloud9 was placed into Group B with China's IMay, Korea's SK Telecom T1, and Taiwan's Flash Wolves. Cloud9 went 2–1 in the first round of matches, then finished with a 1–2 record in the second round. Finishing the group 3–3, they earned the second seed from their group and a spot in quarterfinals. They were placed into a quarterfinal match against Samsung Galaxy.[39] Samsung swept Cloud9 3–0 and went on to finish second in the tournament, while Cloud9 was eliminated.[40]

On December 9, 2016 Cloud9 announced they had moved Juan Arturo "Contractz" Garcia into the starting jungler position and signed Jeon "Ray" Ji-won as a substitute top laner.[41] During the off- season, the Cloud9 Challenger roster, including Balls, LemonNation, Hai, and Altec was purchased by Wes Edens, owner of the Milwaukee Bucks, and rebranded as team FlyQuest.[42]

2017[edit]

Cloud9 began the 2017 Spring Split undefeated through the first 4 weeks. Juan Arturo "Contractz" Garcia, the rookie jungler who replaced Meteos, was a notable factor to Cloud9's early successes during the split. In week 5, Meteos, the substitute jungler for Contractz, was traded to Phoenix1 to fill in for their jungler "Inori".[43] On that same week, they would lose to Team Solomid and Phoenix1, who started the former Cloud9 jungler. The team finished with a 14–4 record and were gifted a first-round bye in the Spring Split Playoffs. They ended as runners-up in the league, losing to TSM in the 2017 Spring Split Finals in a tight 5 game series.[44] During the Spring Split Playoffs, Riot announced that Contractz and Reapered both won NA LCS Rookie of the Split and NA LCS Coach of the Split.[45]

Before the start of the 2017 Summer Split, Cloud9 signed "Westrice" Nguyen (top) and Olivier "Winter" Lapointe (support).[46] Once the split began, however, they did not perform as well as the previous split, ending in 4th place with a 12–6 record behind Team Solomid (1st), Immortals (2nd), and Counter Logic Gaming (3rd). They faced Team Dignitas in the quarterfinals of the Sumer Split Playoffs and subsequently lost to them 3–1.[47] As a result, Cloud9 was placed into the 2017 NA LCS Regional Qualifiers as they did not have enough Championship Points to qualify into the 2017 World Championships.

As Cloud9 was placed 3rd in terms of Championship Points (90 points), they were placed in the final round of the gauntlet.[48] They faced Counter Logic Gaming and qualified for the 2017 World Championships as the 3rd seed after beating them 3–1.[49]

Due to the new rules set for this edition of Worlds, the 3rd seed of North America has to play in the new Play-In Stage along with the other 3rd seed teams of Europe, China, Taiwan, HK & Macau, and winners of minor regions across the world in order to qualify for the main event.[50] Cloud9 was placed in Group B alongside Brazil's Team oNe eSports and Oceania's Dire Wolves. They subsequently swept the group with a 4–0 record and qualified for the knockout stage where they faced Latin America North's Lyon Gaming. Cloud9 ended the Play-Ins with a perfect record 7–0 game record after sweeping Lyon Gaming 3–0, resulting in their qualification into the Group Stage of the 2017 World Championship.

Cloud9 began their run in the Group Stage in Group A, which included reigning 3-time World Champions SKT Telecom T1, China's Summer Split Champion Edward Gaming, and Taiwan's AHQ e-Sports Club.[51] Despite a 2–1 start with a win against EDG and AHQ in the first set of matches, they would end at 3–3, narrowly getting out of the group with SKT at the top of the group. As a result, they gained the 2nd seed from the group and were able to move into the Knockout Stages. Once again, Cloud9 became the last hope for North America as both TSM and Immortals failed to get out of their groups.[52] They would be drawn to face China's Team WE in the quarterfinals and were narrowly defeated 2–3, effectively eliminating their chances for the Summoner's Cup.[53]

In November 2017, Cloud9 announced that Licorice, Selfie, and Wiggily were joining the team and that Contractz and Impact were leaving for the Golden Guardians and Team Liquid respectively.

2018[edit]

Along with the recent acquisition of Licorice as their new top-laner, Cloud9 also signed a replacement jungler, Svenskeren (formerly of Team SoloMid).[54] With these new pick ups made by the team, Cloud9 began the 2018 Spring Split strong, going 8–2 in the first half of the split. However, they would go on a 3–5 run in the latter half of the split ending in 5th place with an 11–7 record, losing the 3rd place Tiebreaker against Team Liquid, but winning the 5th place Tiebreaker against newcomers Clutch Gaming.[55] When playoffs for the Spring Split were underway, they would face Team Liquid again in the quarterfinals and lose 0–3.[56] Despite these results, rookie top laner Licorice won Rookie of the Split for his performance through the Spring Split.[57]

Before the Summer Split began, Cloud9's owner Jack Etienne and coach Reapered made a shocking announcement announcing that they would be benching Jensen (Mid Laner), Sneaky (ADC), and Smoothie (Support), claiming motivational issues. As a result, they called up their replacements from their academy squad: Goldenglue (Mid Laner), Keith (ADC), and Zeyzal (Support).[58] These changes were viewed negatively by the fans, believing that Etienne and Reapered disrespected the all-stars that were replaced. This outrage further escalated from the team's poor start to the Summer Split.[59] With these changes, they went to last place in Week 5 of the split with a record of 3–7. However these changes proved to be beneficial to the team as they went through the latter half of the split with an 8–0 run, after Jensen and Sneaky was brought back into the starting roster and Blaber was subbed into the starting jungler role replacing Svenskeren.[60] They would end in 2nd with another 11–7 record behind reigning NALCS champions Team Liquid.

As they ended in 2nd in the Summer Split, they were awarded a first round bye and automatically moved on to the Semifinals, where they would face their long-time rivals Team SoloMid. The intense series had Cloud9 utilize their substitutions before Game 4 by subbing in the duo of Svenskeren and Goldenglue to replace Blaber and Jensen when down 1–2. As a result, Cloud9 would come back and win against TSM and make the 2018 Summer Split Finals in Oakland, where they faced Team Liquid who won against the 100 Thieves in their semifinal matchup.[61] They would be swept by Team Liquid again, this time in the Finals, going 0–3.[62] As a result, Cloud9 would play in the Regional Qualifiers in the final round to qualify for the 2018 World Championships as the 3rd seed for North America as they did not have enough Championship Points to qualify as the 2nd seed.[62] To fight for that spot for Worlds, they would have to face TSM. Both teams have never missed Worlds in their franchise history and one of them would have to break either one of their streaks. In commanding fashion, Cloud9 sweeps TSM with a 3–0 victory cementing them into the World Championships.[63] Rookie jungler, Blaber, won Rookie of the Split, and Reapered won his second Coach of the Split in his coaching career.[64]

Due to being the 3rd Seed coming out of the Regional Qualifiers, they had to go through the Play-In stages once again in the 2018 World Championships. They swept through their group with a 4–0 record against Japan's DentonatioNFocusMe and Brazil's KaBuM!.[65] They would face a tough challenge against Russia's Gambit Esports and win in a tight serious with a 3–2 victory over the Russian team.[66]

In the Main Event, Cloud9 were seeded into Group B; this group was nicknamed the "Group of Death", also containing Team Vitality, and two of the favourite teams in the competition; Royal Never Give Up and Gen.G. Despite being one of the seemingly weaker teams in the group, Cloud9 defied expectations and came out of the group stage with a 4–3 record, allowing them to proceed into the Quarterfinals in second place for their group.

In the Quarterfinals, Cloud9 was paired against Afreeca Freecs. This series became one of the most infamous series at a World Finals event, as Cloud9 claimed victory over Afreeca with a 3–0 record, making Cloud9 the first North American team that had made the semi-finals of a World Championship since the Season One World Championship. Cloud9 went on to play against Fnatic in the Semifinals, a series that was coined "The Battle of the West", in which Cloud9 lost 0–3.

On November 12, Cloud9 was awarded the "Esports Organisation of the Year" prize at the Esports Awards.

2019[edit]

In the 2019 season, the biggest roster change from the previous year was trading longtime player Jensen to Team Liquid and acquiring European import player Yasin "Nisqy" Dinçer.[67] In the middle of the spring split, 2017 Scouting Grounds first pick acquisition Colin "Kumo" Zhao (previously Shiro and League) as well as Goldenglue were pulled up to play for the main roster briefly before they left at the end of the year.[68]

The team placed 2nd in the regular season Spring Split (14-4 record) and received a bye to the semifinals of the playoffs, where they fell to Team SoloMid 2–3, sending them to face FlyQuest for 3rd place, which they won. In the Summer Split, the team again performed well (12-6 record), placing 2nd and again going straight to semifinals. They beat Counter Logic Gaming 3-1 but fell to Team Liquid in the finals 2–3. Due to their record, Cloud9 had already secured a trip to Worlds 2019, but lost their shot at the 1st seed.

Cloud9 was drawn into Group A along with Griffin, G2 Esports, and Hong Kong Attitude. Despite their strong domestic performance all year, Cloud9 could not stand up to the strong representatives from Korea and Europe, and ended up 2–4 in the group. Cloud9 exited the tournament to the disappointment of many after the group stage.

After the 2019 season, Cloud9 made roster decisions that did not include Sneaky, AD carry starter of 7 years. On January 15, 2020, after a long period of uncertainty of whether he would stay with the roster or with the organization, Sneaky announced that he would be leaving Cloud9 to pursue an independent streaming career.[69][70][71] Sneaky still holds equity in the organization which gives him ownership interests.

2020[edit]

After Sneaky's retirement and the departure of Svenskeren and Zeyzal, there was a fair amount of skepticism in Cloud9's new lineup; many preseason power rankings gave the team a middling chance at best and ranked them as the third or fourth best team on paper.[72][73] Instead, the team went on to produce the most dominant split performance in LCS History,[74] dropping only one regular season game to Team SoloMid,[75] and one playoff game to Evil Geniuses.[76]

Cloud9 made it to the League of Legends Championship Series 2020 Spring Split Finals against FlyQuest,[77] and swept their opponents 3–0 to win the Spring Split title after a 17-1 regular season record, giving them their first LCS title in 6 years [74] and surpassing their own record of highest win rate in a split.[74]

In the Summer Split, Cloud9 resumed their spring dominance and won nine games in a row before losing to 100 Thieves. The team's strength gradually tapered off with them falling from 1st to 2nd place, behind Team Liquid. Cloud9 secured a bye to the 2nd round of playoffs against FlyQuest, but lost the series 1-3 and dropped into the losers' bracket where they defeated Evil Geniuses in a 3-0 sweep. They faced Team SoloMid in a qualification match for the 2020 League of Legends World Championship, as the winning team would at a minimum secure their place at the tournament as North America's third seed. Cloud9 lost the series 1-3, and were thereby eliminated from playoff contention and were unable to qualify for the World Championship.

While it was originally stated that the roster would remain together going into the 2021 season,[78] it was announced on October 19 that Cloud9 top laner Eric "Licorice" Ritchie would be removed from the team. He was replaced by Cloud9 Academy top laner Ibrahim "Fudge" Allami.[79]

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive[edit]

History[edit]

Cloud9 entered the professional Counter-Strike: Global Offensive scene on August 1, 2014, with their acquisition of compLexity Gaming's North American roster.[80] The players reportedly left compLexity after they received better offers from Cloud9 prior to renewing their contracts. Cloud9 made their first appearance at ESL One: Cologne 2014, where they finished 2–0 in Group D of the group stage, but lost in the quarterfinals to Swedish team Ninjas in Pyjamas, who later won the tournament.[81] On November 26, Sean "sgares" Gares replaced Spencer "Hiko" Martin as the team's in-game leader.[82] On December 14, Hiko left Cloud9, to be replaced by Shahzeb "ShahZaM" Khan.[83][84][85]

On April 24, 2015, Cloud9 released ShahZam and Kory "Semphis" Friesen.[86] Five days later, Ryan "fREAKAZOiD" Abadir and Tyler "Skadoodle" Latham, formerly of iBUYPOWER, joined the team, and Braxton "swag" Pierce joined as an analyst,[87] sgares stepped down from the roster on November 24.[88]

Cloud9 placed thirteenth to sixteenth at MLG Columbus 2016, losing to Natus Vincere and G2 Esports in the group stage. Shortly after the event on April 12, it was announced that fREAKAZOiD would be leaving the team. Team Liquid's Eric "adreN" Hoag was subsequently announced as a temporary stand-in,[89] playing for Cloud9 until Alec "Slemmy" White was announced as the official replacement on April 23.[90] Manager Tres "stunna" Saranthus left the team on July 26.[91] On August 17, Cloud9 announced that they were replacing Slemmy with Timothy "autimatic" Ta.[92] On October 30, Cloud9 defeated SK Gaming 2–1 in a best-of-three series to win the ESL Pro League Season 4 finals in São Paulo, Brazil.[93]

On August 15, 2017, Michael "shroud" Grzesiek and Jordan "n0thing" Gilbert left the team, with shroud announcing that he intended to become a full-time streamer.[94]

On January 28, 2018, Cloud9 defeated FaZe Clan 2–1 at the ELEAGUE Major: Boston 2018 finals, becoming the first North American team to win a Major.[95][96] On March 31, Cloud9's main AWPer, Tyler "Skadoodle" Latham, announced on Twitter that he was taking a break from professional play. On the same day, a much anticipated transfer occurred with Jacky "Stewie2K" Yip terminating his multi-year contract with Cloud9 to move to SK Gaming, although he would later join Team Liquid after only a brief stay with SK.[97][98] shroud officially retired from competitive play and left Cloud9 on April 18.[99]

Cloud9 announced on December 6, 2019 that Timothy "autimatic" Ta, Damian "daps" Steele, and Kenneth "koosta" Suen had been released from the organization and their contracts bought out by Gen.G Esports.[100][101] A month later, on January 6, 2020, Cloud9 signed the South African team ATK's CS:GO roster.[102]

On September 6, 2020, Cloud9 announced that they would undergo a complete rebuild in their CS:GO division. The players continued to play under the Cloud9 name until the new roster was completely formed.[103] The next day, Cloud9 unveiled their new general manager Henry "⁠HenryG⁠" Greer and new coach Aleksandar "⁠kassad⁠" Trifunović.[104] On September 10, Alex "⁠ALEX⁠" McMeekin signed a three-year contract with Cloud9.[105] On September 19, Cloud9 acquired William "⁠mezii⁠" Merriman from GamerLegion and Özgür "⁠woxic⁠" Eker from mousesports.[106][107] On October 7, Cloud9 re-signed Ricky "⁠floppy⁠" Kemery, who becomes the fourth player of the new team.[108] The last player Patrick "es3tag" Hansen was bought from Astralis and was announced on October 15.[109]

Vainglory[edit]

On September 1, 2016, Cloud9 acquired Nemesis Hydra from Team Nemesis, getting their feet into the mobile esports scene. Nemesis Hydra had been one of the first competitive teams of Vainglory, having first appeared in March 2015.[110] In their short year and a half of existence, Hydra had made it to the third tournament day, at least semi-finals, in each live championship. While never winning a championship, they completed a 14-game win streak in Split One of the 2016 Summer Season tournament "Evil 8."

In the Vainglory Summer Live Championships, under the blue and white of Cloud9, the team beat Phoenix Reborn in the first round, falling to Team SoloMid in the second round, and Phoenix Reign in the loser's bracket, missing their first day three of live finals in their history. Cloud 9 would not qualify for the 2016 Vainglory World Championship. The team overcame Team SoloMid in the semifinals of the First Vainglory Unified Championship in London and were crowned winners after taking down Gankstars in Finals.[111] In the 2017 Summer Unified Championships in Los Angeles they would once again be crowned Unified Champions, defeating Immortals in the final. At the 2017 World Championship, Cloud 9 would make it all the way to the semifinal, before losing to Tribe Gaming, the former roster of Immortals.[112]

On February 5, 2018 Cloud9 disbanded their Vainglory division.[113]

Hearthstone[edit]

Cloud9 joined the Hearthstone scene in mid-2014 with the acquisition of DogeHouse.

Super Smash Bros.[edit]

Cloud9 joined the Super Smash Bros. scene in May 2014 after picking up Mang0. In 2016, the organization expanded their smash division by adding Ally for Smash 4[114] and Tafokints as Mang0's personal coach.[115] On March 31, 2018, Tafokints announced he was departing the organization to join Counter Logic Gaming as their business development manager.[116] On April 4, 2018, Ally departed from Cloud9.[117]

Overwatch[edit]

Overwatch Apex[edit]

Cloud9 fielded a team for the South Korean premier league OGN Overwatch APEX for the 2nd season in 2017.[118] During the Group C group stage match against AF.Blue on February 14, 2017, multiple times during that match Cloud 9 would win fights but lose the overall round due to focusing on scoring kills against enemy players over controlling the match objective.[119] Derisive cries of "C9 LUL" from the match chat on Twitch would be referenced in later matches, to the point where "C9" became a generic term for losing a match due to becoming distracted from the main objective. This usage initially was confined to Korean audiences, but would eventually find wider use among audiences of Overwatch League.

Overwatch League[edit]

On August 10, 2017, Cloud9 was announced as one of the teams that has acquired an Overwatch League franchise spot to represent London.[120] On November 1, 2017 the name of Cloud9's Overwatch franchise was announced as the London Spitfire.[121] On February 15, 2018, the European Overwatch Contenders team was announced as the British Hurricane.[122]

Rocket League[edit]

RLCS Season 6[edit]

SquishyMuffinz, Gimmick, and Torment in their game against Dignitas to win RLCS Season 6.

In Season 6, Cloud9 won the RLCS World Championship, ending the 4 season long domination from the European region. After a 2–1 overtime win from Cloud9, Cloud 9 went on to outscore Dignitas 9–0 in the next two games. Dignitas went on to shut out Cloud9 4–0 in game 4. Cloud9 followed up with a 2–0 win over Dignitas to win the first of two series‘ 4–1. Cloud9 again took a 1–0 lead at the start of the second series with a game-winning goal from Torment with :58 seconds left with a double pass play from Squishy and Gimmick. Dignitas won game two in a 2–0 shutout to tie the series 1–1. Cloud9 took a commanding 2–1 lead after a 4–1 win. In game 4 Gimmick scored a clutch goal with 1:20 remaining to take a 3–1 lead and win to go up 3–1 in the series. With a tied game halfway through game 5 and really good defensive plays by both teams, it seemed no one could score and game 5 could go to overtime. With 1:29 left Torment scores a huge goal that seems to seal the deal, but 7 seconds later ViolentPanda tie the game 2–2. It was back to square one for both teams. In the last 1:22 Cloud9 went on a 2–1 run to win game 5 5–3, and win the second series 4–1.

Departure from Rocket League[edit]

On the 10th of June 2020, Cloud9 announced their departure from Rocket League.[123]

PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds[edit]

PUBG Mobile[edit]

On November 20, 2018, Cloud9 announced on their Twitter that the organization was picking up the North American PUBG Mobile Star Challenge Champions, who were originally a part of Team Gates Mobile for the North American Regional Star Challenge.[124] The team was disbanded after the Star Challenge, on December 1, because Cloud9 stated that the team was only going to be with them for the duration of the Star Challenge.

Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege[edit]

Cloud9 announced that they were adding Rainbow Six Siege to their competitive roster on Twitter on June 18, 2018.[125] However, the team that was originally put together by Cloud9 was eventually moved to Team Reciprocity, announced by Team Reciprocity on January 7, 2019.[126]

Cloud9 announced that it was re-entering the Rainbow Six Siege competitive circuit on April 6, 2019 with a new team of five players, one coach, and one assistant coach.[127] They have since changed their roster of players to swap two of their players for the upcoming season.[128] Since this roster change, the team has participated in four matches, with scores being 1-1, 0–1 against the team Scarz on March 19, and 1-1, 1–0 against the team aXiomatic on March 24.[129]

Fortnite[edit]

Cloud9 first entered Fortnite competitively in 2018, and formally re-entered the circuit in the summer of 2019.[130] The team is currently managed by Krissi Waters.[130]

Valorant[edit]

Cloud9 announced its entry to Valorant on April 12, 2020 by signing its first player TenZ on the Valorant roster.[131] The team is currently managed by Ysabel "Noukky" Müller.[132]

Current rosters[edit]

Apex Legends[133]
Nat. Name ID Role
United States Jamison Moore PVPX
United States Gregory McAllen Grego
United States Joseph Sanchez Frexs
United States Justin Andrews Chappie
United States Timothy Liang Overpowered
Brazil Gabriel Ceregatto isnoul
Chess[134]
Nat. Name ID Role
United States Andrew Tang penguingm1
Counter-Strike: Global Offensive[135]
Active Squad
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date
United Kingdom Alex McMeekin ALEX In-game leader 2020-09-10[136]
United Kingdom William Merriman mezii Rifler (support) 2020-09-19[137]
Turkey Özgür Eker woxic AWPer 2020-09-19[138]
United States Ricky Kemery floppy Rifler[139] 2020-01-06[102][139]
Denmark Patrick Hansen es3tag Rifler 2020-10-15[109]
Serbia Aleksandar Trifunović kassad Coach 2020-09-07[140]
Inactive Squad
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date
South Africa Johnny Theodosiou JT In-game leader 2020-01-06[102]
United States Ian Hardy motm Rifler (entry fragger) 2020-01-06[102]
United States Joshua Ohm oSee AWPer 2020-01-06[102]
South Africa Aran Groesbeek Sonic Rifler (lurker) 2020-01-06[102]
South Africa Tiaan Coertzen T.c Head Coach 2020-01-06[102]
Notable Former Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date Leave Date
United States Spencer Martin Hiko Rifler/Lurker 2014-08-01[141] 2014-12-01[142]
United States Ryan Abadir fREAKAZOiD Rifler 2015-04-29[143] 2016-05-19[144]
United States Alec White Slemmy Captain 2016-04-23[145] 2016-08-17[146]
Canada Michael Grzesiek Shroud Rifler 2014-08-01[141] 2017-08-15[147]
United States Jake Yip Stewie2k Rifler/AWPer 2016-01-11[148] 2017-03-30[149]
United States Jordan Gilbert n0thing Rifler/Lurker 2014-08-01[141] 2017-05-07[150]
United States Tarik Celik tarik Rifler/Entry 2017-08-15[147] 2018-07-12[151]
United States Tyler Latham Skadoodle AWPer 2015-04-29[143] 2018-10-16[152]
France Fabien Fiey kioShiMa Rifler 2018-11-17[153] 2019-03-31[154]
Denmark René Borg cajunb Rifler 2019-04-02[155] 2019-07-02[156]
United States Timothy Ta autimatic Lurker 2016-08-17[146] 2019-12-06[157]
United States Kenneth Suen koosta Rifler/AWPer 2019-07-02[156] 2019-12-06[157]
Canada Damian Steele daps Captain/Entry 2019-07-02[156] 2019-12-06[157]
Australia Chris Tebbit Elmapuddy Assistant Coach 2019-09-20[158] 2019-12-06[157]
Canada Yassine Taoufik Subroza Rifler (Stand-in) 2019-10-20[159] 2019-12-21[160]
Fortnite[161]
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date
Brazil Patrick Garcia da Silva BlackoutZ South America 2019-07-03[162]
Brazil Igor Fernandes Theophilo Amorim drakoNz South America 2019-07-03[162]
Canada Avery North America 2020-09-19[163]
Canada nosh North America 2020-09-21[163]
United States Noah Wright Vivid North America 2020-09-26[163]
United States Alex Radziwill De Barba Fryst North America 2020-09-28[164]
United States Ryan Chaplo Chap North America 2020-10-02[165]
Hearthstone[166]
Nat. Name ID Role
Ukraine Aleksandr Malsh Kolento
South Korea Baek Sang-hyeon DDaHyoNi
South Korea Cho Hyun-soo Flurry
South Korea Kim Jin-hyo LookSam
South Korea Jang Hyun-jae DawN
League of Legends[167]
Nat. Name ID Role
United States Robert Huang Blaber Jungler
Belgium Yasin Dinçer Nisqy Mid Laner
Denmark Jesper Svenningsen Zven AD Carry
Canada Philippe Laflamme Vulcan Support
South Korea Kim Yeu-jin Reignover Coach
South Korea Jung Min-sung RapidStar Assistant Coach
Overwatch (As London Spitfire)[168]
Nat. Name ID Role
South Korea Kim Ji-hyeok birdring Main DPS
South Korea Park Jun-young Profit Flex DPS
South Korea Lee Hee-dong Guard Flex DPS
South Korea Hong Jae-hui Gesture Main Tank
South Korea Kim Jun-ho Fury Flex Tank
South Korea Kim Jong-seok NUS Main Support
South Korea Song Ji-hoon Quatermain Main Support
South Korea Choi Seung-tae Bdosin Flex Support
South Korea Jeong Yung-hoon Krillin Flex Support
South Korea Kim Kwang-bok Coach815 Coach
South Korea Kim Jeong-min Jfeel Assistant Coach
South Korea Hong Cheol-yong Agape Assistant Coach
PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds[169]
Nat. Name ID Role
Canada Thierry Kaltenback Kaymind
United States Benjamin Wheeler Nerf
Philippines Magno Ramos Pr0phie
United States Hunter Winn hwinn
Rules of Survival[170]
Nat. Name ID Role
United States Alex Yee Ayee
United Kingdom Eli Barnes Seth
Streamers
Nat. Name ID Role
United States Michael Kurylo Bunny FuFuu
Netherlands WehSing Yuen SingSing
Sweden Sebastian Fors Forsen
Denmark Jon Andersen BabyKnight
United States Joseph Winkler Keeoh
South Korea Kang Hyung-woo Cpt Jack
United Kingdom Emma Rankin EmZ
Canada Tyson Ngo TenZ
Super Smash Bros.[171]
Nat. Name ID Role
United States Joseph Marquez Mang0 Melee
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege[172]
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date
South Korea Kim Sung-su EnvyTaylor Captain/Flex 2019-04-05[173]
South Korea Lee Si-hun Nova Support 2019-04-05[173]
South Korea Han Chan-yong SweetBlack Flex 2019-04-05[173]
South Korea Hyun Park OCN Coach 2019-04-05[173]
South Korea Song Dong-seon SyAIL Entry Fragger 2020-03-04[174]
South Korea Lee Hyo-jun Harp3r Entry Fragger 2020-03-04[174]
South Korea Seo Min-jae RechoTZ Assistant Coach 2020-03-14[175]
Former Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege[172]
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date Leave date
South Korea Kwon Yu-geun h3dy Support 2019-04-05[173] 2020-02-18[176]
South Korea Lee In-yup Neilyo Flex 2019-04-05[173] 2019-12-20[177]
South Korea Seewoong Heo CATsang Substitute/Support 2019-07-23[178] 2019-12-20[177]
South Korea Kim In-yeong SummerRain Coach 2019-04-05[173] 2019-10-20[179]
Canada Davide Bucci FoxA Fragger 2018-06-18[180] 2019-01-07[181]
United States Lauren Williams Goddess Captain 2018-06-18[180] 2019-01-07[182]
United States Gabriel Mirelez LaXing Fragger 2018-06-18[180] 2019-01-07[181]
United States Mark Arismendez Mark Support 2018-07-24[183] 2019-01-07[181]
United States Alexander Lloyd Retro Support 2018-06-18[180] 2019-01-07[181]
United States Brandon Escamilla Shlongii Support 2018-06-18[180] 2018-07-24[183]
United States Anthony Ybarra Viirus Coach 2018-08-16[184] 2019-01-07[181]
United States Thomas Linden Robn Analyst 2018-06-18[180] 2019-01-07[181]
World of Warcraft[185]
Nat. Name ID Role
Canada Cameron MacDonald Kubzy
United States Marcel Rodriguez Wealthyman
Canada Kelvin Nguyen Snutz
Australia Adam Chan Chanimal
Valorant[132]
Cloud9 Blue
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date
Canada Tyson Ngo TenZ Fragger 2020-04-12[131]
United States Skyler Weaver Relyks Fragger 2020-06-24[186]
United States Mitch Semago mitch Defence 2020-07-15[187]
United States Daniel Kim Vice Defence 2020-8-17[188]
United States Josh Abastado shinobi In-game leader 2020-07-31[189]
Cloud9 White
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date
United States Unknown Katsumi Support 2020-25-10 [190]
Canada Jasmine Manankil Jazzykins Fragger 2020-25-10 [191]
United States Alexis Guarassi Alexis Support 2020-25-10 [192]
Canada Melanie Capone MeL In-Game leader 2020-25-10 [193]
United States Annie Roberts Annie Fragger 2020-25-10 [194]
Management
Nat. Name ID Role Join Date
United States Will Alfonsi Will General Manager 2020-04-12
Germany Ysabel Müller Noukky Team Manager 2020-04-12

Management[edit]

Nat. Name ID Role
United States Jack Etienne Jack Owner/Founder[195]
United States Dan Fiden Dan President
United States Paullie Etienne Paullie COO
United States Zachary Scuderi Sneaky Owner/Advisor[196]
United States Donald Boyce Don VP Partnerships
United States Gregory Fraser Greg Partnerships
United States Adrian Gale Adrian Director of Merchandise
United States Mae Gabbert Mae Operations Manager
United States Cory Heimbecker Cory Graphics Production
Sweden Calle Danielsson Calle Video Production
United States Cassidy Sanders Cassidy Video Production
United States Camille Dunn Camille Head of Branded Content
United States Maddisen Soer Maddie Videographer
United States Karen Busenlehner Karen Experiential Coordinator
United States Emily Gonzalez-Holland Emily Director of Marketing
Brazil Mateus Portilho Portilho Head of Social Media
United States Gaylen Malone Gaylen Senior General Manager
United States Jonathan Tran Jonathan General Manager,[197] Team Manager[198]
United States Vincent Lewis Vincent Team Manager (League of Legends)[197]
South Korea Lee Seung-hwan Robin General Manager,[199] Team Manager[200][201]
South Korea Jihun Lee Hoonmaru Assistant Manager[199]
South Korea Minjae Seo RechoTZ Assistant Manager[201]
United Kingdom Tom Stewart Stylosa British Consultant (London Spitfire)
Germany Ysabel Müller Noukky Team Manager[202][203]
United States Tiffany Chiu Tifa Team Manager[204][205]
United States Kurtis Lloyd Kala Team Manager[200][206][207][208]
United States Krissi Waters Krissi Team Manager,[130][209] LACS Team Manager[197]

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External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Team SoloMid
North American League of Legends Championship Series winner
Summer 2013–Spring 2014
Succeeded by
Team SoloMid
Preceded by
PGL Major Kraków 2017
Gambit Esports
ELEAGUE Major: Boston 2018 winner
2018
Succeeded by
FACEIT Major: London 2018
Astralis
Preceded by
2018 Overwatch League Grand Finals winner
2018
Succeeded by