What the Hell is Team Liquid Doing?

Daniel Joseph Lilly
Filed under: Esports, League of Legends, MOBA

Team Liquid is a massive esports organization with successful teams and professional players in a variety of titles. Their League of Legends team, however, has been struggling for nearly two years now, with management making plenty of moves in order to find a fix. But their latest move might just be the most bizarre yet.

Team Liquid: Dardoch Returns

Following a press release from Counter Logic Gaming announcing the release of Dardoch, Team Liquid announced via Twitter that they would be bringing him back to their League of Legends roster. This is confirmed by the Riot players contract database. The announcement comes in the wake of a possible opening in that spot, as their acquisition of South Korean mid laner Mickey means they could only field two of their three Korean imported players, which also includes jungler Reignover and ADC Piglet.

Mid lane has long been a trouble spot for Team Liquid, basically since the departure of FeniX in December of 2016. Since then, it has fielded GoldenGlue, Piglet, and Slooshi in the role, all the while with LiNk as a substitute mid laner on the roster. Few were convinced Mickey would be the key to Liquid’s success, as the former ROX Tigers mid laner is known for his inconsistent play.

And while it was assumed that Inori would take up the role of starting jungler (and Reignover would be left in the proverbial dust), the former P1 jungler has failed to impress with his performances both in Summer and the back half of Spring 2017. So the acquisition of another jungler isn’t the surprise here. It’s much more about who that jungler is.

Clearly the events that led to the blow up portrayed in Breaking Point were not solely the work of Dardoch, as their were issues flying from almost all of the players as well as then head coach Locodoco. But to think that the events of 2016 are well in the past and those people have moved on seems to be more than a fan can ask. Just a few weeks ago, in the middle of the NA LCS Summer Split (where Liquid is currently 7th at 4-10), Dardoch was asked during a Twitch stream for his thoughts on Team Liquid, and he didn’t hold back.

“They’re just hot garbage, like always bro. They’re just real bad, I think. They have a lot of issues, and none of them are getting fixed it seems. I don’t have a lot of respect for Liquid, as an organization, or players, or a team.”

So despite the history between him and the organization, and despite recent comments, the Team Liquid organization decided it would be a good idea to bring Dardoch back into their fold. Dardoch was suspended from Team Liquid in May of 2016, then left in November. He went on to Immortals, where he was released early from a 3-year contract in May of 2017. CEO Noah Winston admitted that Dardoch did not fit the sort of culture the team was looking to build, but insisted that the issue wasn’t exactly the attitude problems fans would make it out to be. Nevertheless, Dardoch would join Counter Logic Gaming for the beginning of Summer Split 2017, only to be released yesterday due to an unwillingness to adapt to the team culture.

team liquid

Will head coach Cain be able to do a better job handling Dardoch? Image via Twitter.

Team Liquid has seen more than their fair share of trouble, especially in the last three splits. At this point, it seems like they might be actively seeking it out.

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