According to an announcement on Red Bull Gaming's social media account, Cloud9 is officially competing in the third edition of Red Bull Home Ground. The VALORANT tournament will feature some of the most exciting teams going into the 2023 VCT year, with all the teams competing for a $100,000 prize pool. The tournament will also mark the debut of Cloud9's new blockbuster team — headlined by Jaccob “yay” Whiteaker.
Cloud9 was the final team announced in the eight-team tournament, the other teams being FOKUS, FUT Esports, KRU Esports, Team Liquid, Team Vitality, 100 Thieves, and Team Heretics. The competition will take place from December 9th to December 11th at the Victoria Warehouse in Manchester, England.
Throughout 2022, yay built a reputation as arguably the best VALORANT player in the world — helping OpTic Gaming reach the finals of several big tournaments, as well as a win at VCT 2022: Stage 1 Masters - Reykjavík. After it was announced that OpTic would not be a featured team in the VCT Americas league, where yay would end up was a key story through the offseason.
Though Cloud9 did not have nearly as strong results, they had a solid amount of success throughout 2022, including a third place finish at VCT 2022: North America Stage 1 Challengers. Yay will be joining a proven core Nathan “leaf” Orf, Anthony “vanity” Malaspina, and Erick “Xeppaa” Bach, as well as former Version1 and Sentinels star Jordan “Zellsis” Montemurro.