UPDATE 7/9: Immortals has signed Dardoch has its new assistant coach 11 days after Dardoch signed a management contract with UK-based ICM Stellar Esports. In an exclusive with Upcomer, Dardoch told Nick Ray that the door was still open on his playing career. Dardoch has familiarity Immortals from when he played as the organization's starting jungler in the 2017 NA LCS Spring Split, but a 7th place finish led to a summer trade of Dardoch to Counter Logic Gaming.
UPDATE 6/29: A few days into Dardoch's new free agency, he has signed with a management firm in the UK. ICM Stellar Esports, the esports division of management agency ICM Stellar Sports, has signed Dardoch. The company's UK home base could point towards Dardoch heading to a European Regional League team.
Dignitas has announced a roster change ahead of week 4 of the 2021 League of Legends Championship Series Summer Split. The organization has parted ways with jungler Joshua "Dardoch" Hartnett and DIG Academy jungler Matthew "Akaadian" Higginbotham has been officially promoted to LCS starting jungler. The roster adjustment was announced via Twitter on Friday, June 25 by Dignitas general manager James "Bakery" Baker.
After Dignitas' loss to Golden Guardians last Friday, it was announced that Dardoch would be benched and Akaadian would be starting in the interim. With Akaadian in the lineup, DIG lost its following two matches TSM and Counter Logic Gaming, the only two teams to go 3-0 last week.
One week later, DIG made it official it was parting ways with Dardoch, citing behavior following Friday's loss that was not representative of its organization or team. Since the team saw no way to reconcile with Dardoch, the player and organization have decided to part ways.
This is not the first roster change DIG has made this split. After a 2-1 start to the LCS Summer Split, mid laner Max "Soligo" Soong was swapped with DIG Academy mid laner David "Yusui" Bloomquist. Since Yusui began starting in the mid lane, DIG has gone 1-5, the sole win coming against Immortals when Dardoch was still in the lineup for the black and yellow.
Akaadian has proven himself as a LCS-worthy jungler multiple times throughout his career, but has failed to find a consistent starting spot on multiple organizations. In 2019, Akaadian made his first finals appearance in the LCS Spring Playoffs as the starting jungler for TSM. Akaadian will be put to the test in his first match as Dignitas' official starter against 100 Thieves, who has played to a league best 7-2 this summer and sports a strong jungler in Can “Closer” Çelik.
Source: Tina Jo/Riot Games via ESPAT