Jensen leaves Cloud9, joins Team Liquid
Cloud9 have dropped a bombshell to open free agency in North America, as they have traded Nicolaj “Jensen” Jensen to Team Liquid. The team announced the news on Nov. 20 at 3 a.m. CET on social media.
Jensen has been synonymous with Cloud9 ever since he began his professional League of Legends career. He nearly did not have a career, but Riot Games lifted an indefinite suspension he faced for past actions. As soon as that happened, Cloud9 signed him to replace the injured and retiring Hai “Hai” Du Lam. Since then, he has been tied with Cloud9’s time near the top of the NA LCS.
“Cloud9 and namely Jack have been no less than family to me over the past years,” the player said. “But I am writing this statement to let you know that from now on, I will be playing for Team Liquid. I am changing things because I feel that will give me the best chance of achieving my goal, to become the very best version of myself. I have nothing but respect and gratitude for Cloud9, after all they gave me the opportunity to meet my fans, you guys really keep me going. Cloud9 and I may be separating ways in the LCS, but one thing is certain, family really is forever.”
The player initially struggled to translate his mechanical prowess to pro play. However, Hai’s return as a jungler in the 2015 summer split helped him blossom under veteran supervision. Since then, he has become a consistent performer on Summoners’ Rift, although he has had highlights on the tragic side.
However, he lost his undisputed status as a starter in the 2018 LCS summer split following Greyson “Goldenglue” Gilmer’s resurgence. The two players alternated playing time, and Cloud9 boasted two lineups for a time. Jensen and rookie Robert “Blaber” Huang frequently played together, whereas Goldenglue and Dennis “Svenskeren” Johnsen formed the Swole Bros duo. The formation of the dynamic duos helped Cloud9 reach the 2018 World Semifinals. In the process, they beat Afreeca Freecs, Team Vitality and Gen.G.
Team Liquid’s signing of Jensen marks the possible end of the line for Eugene “Pobelter” Park, whose contract ran out Nov. 18. Pobelter’s offseason whereabouts are currently unknown, and teams in need of veteran presence would be wise to sign him.
The signing is the second time Team Liquid hire a Cloud9 player in their ranks. Indeed, Jung “Impact” Eon-yeoung played alongside Jensen in Cloud9 in 2016 and 2017, and the duo have reached the World Championship quarterfinals both years. Team Liquid’s upgrade in the mid lane may help them build a bigger gap with North American competition. In addition, they may aspire to a better World Championship finish than the group stage exit they suffered in 2018.