UPDATE Feb. 23: Cloud9 has provided Inven Global with a statement regarding the release of LS.
The statement reads as follows:
"At Cloud9, we have a standard that all our coaching staff must meet.
From the start of our working relationship, there was a fundamental difference in how we viewed these standards, and we worked together to try and find a compromise. Despite our best efforts to work with LS, we were unable to work towards a resolution and came to the decision that it is best for all parties to part ways.
This decision does not come lightly, and we wish nothing but the best for LS in his next chapter.
Now, the team looks towards the future. We are confident in Max Waldo and his coaching ability to take our team to where we need to be moving forward."
Cloud9 also confirmed that the organization would not be taking additional questions on the matter at this time.
UPDATE Feb. 22: Cloud9 published a video to their Twitter account featuring CEO Jack Etienne, head coach Max Waldo, jungler Robert "Blaber" Huang and Summit regarding the release of LS. In the video, the importance of making a change in coaching staff was stressed, but no specifics were given on what led to the release of LS.
UPDATE Feb. 20: Inven Global has reached out for a statement from Cloud9 following the conclusion of week 3 of the 2022 LCS Spring Split. C9 lost to Counter Logic Gaming in their first game after releasing LS, but despite falling behind heavily in the early game against TSM in their next match, managed to come back and pull out the win to finish the week 1-1. We will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.
UPDATE Feb. 19: A representative of Cloud9 has confirmed with Inven Global that LS has indeed been released from the organization, but no further information has been provided at this time. We will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.
UPDATE Feb. 19: LS has tweeted once again following his release, stating that he's fine, but surprised as much as everyone else.
Cloud9 Academy jungler Sebastian "Malice" Edholm has stated via Discord that he is unable to comment on the specifics of the situation, but confirmed that there were a lot of reasons for the release of LS.
Cloud9 has announced just ahead of their first match of week 3 of the 2022 LCS Spring Split that head coach Nick "LS" De Cesare has been released. Assistant coach Max Waldo has been promoted to head coach.
C9's entire 2022 season plan, from roster-building to playstyle, was centered around the philosophies of LS. The now former head coach tweeted that he was informed of his release four hours prior to the announcement.
C9 had spent the start of the 2022 LCS Spring Split garnering attention for 'The Church of LS' playstyle, which focuses heavily on scaling and drafting unorthodox picks like Ivern mid and Soraka mid. The style had found success for the team thus far in the split, as Cloud9 came into week 3 tied for 1st place with a record of 3-1. The reason for LS' sudden release has not yet been revealed by the organization or the coach himself.
LS previously has worked in esports as a coach for EU LCS squad Supa Hot Crew, NA LCS squad Gravity, and LCK Challenger squad BBQ Olivers. LS has also spent time as a caster in South Korea's LCK and a content creator for T1 last year. Max Waldo joined Cloud9 as an assistant coach before the start of the 2021 season.
C9's new roster has taken very little time to acclimate, with impressive LCS debuts coming from top laner Park "Summit" Woo-tae, AD carry Kim "Berserker" Min-cheol, and support Kim "Winsome" Dong-keon. Only Summit has major region experience in the LCK for the past few seasons, whereas Berserker and Winsome's only previous competitive experience was in the LCK Challenger league.
Cloud9 immediately went into their match with Counter Logic Gaming with Max Waldo at the helm on stage for the draft phase. We will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.