Last week, Overwatch League Champion and MVP player Jay ‘Sinatraa’ Won announced his move to VALORANT. Now, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive player Ryan ‘Freakazoid’ Abadir has announced plans to withdraw from competitive CS:GO to pursue VALORANT.
The anticipation of any announcement from Riot Games detailing VALORANT esports has been building since the launch of the Closed Beta. VALORANT was clearly designed with high-level esports competition in mind, and speculation about the title’s future stars and which major orgs will dominate it has run rampant.
Immediately, it was clear that this game would attract players from other esport titles. Whether it was because those talented players had hit a dead-end in their current game, or more preferably, the excitement of a new game along with a roadmap or outline of VALORANT esports would be too appealing to overlook. So far, we’ve witnessed a handful of major names announce their move to VALORANT.
Among those players announcing their transition to VALORANT, the announcement from former Overwatch League player ‘Sinatraa’ has certainly been the most surprising thus far. Already an OWL Champion with the San Francisco Shock, ‘Sinatraa’ was also named the Most Valuable Player of the 2019 Overwatch League.
In the case of ‘Sinatraa’, he states in his announcement that he had just lost the passion for Overwatch. His TwitLonger post mentions that he isn’t quite sure what led to his falling out with the game, but that logging on and competing wasn’t fun anymore.
"“Straight up just lost passion for the game. IDK what the real killer was for me but maybe it was 2-2-2 lock, maybe it was bans, im not sure… I just know it was hard for me to log on to play and I didn’t have fun in scrims/ranked at all anymore.”Jay ‘Sinatraa’ Won, announcement via TwitLonger"
‘Sinatraa’ will compete in future Invitationals and the oncoming VALORANT Esports circuit as apart of the Sentinals – alongside ShahZaM, zombs, and SicK.
On Sunday, another successful competitive player, this time within Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, announced his plans to step away from CS:GO to pursue a championship in VALORANT. Ryan ‘Freakazoid’ Abadir most recently competed alongside his brother Austin ‘Cooper’ Abadir on the North American squad, Swole Patrol. However, Austin ‘Cooper’ Abadir announced his signing with eUnited, which likely prompted Ryan’s departure of Swole Patrol and eventual move to VALORANT.
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This announcement reinforces the widely suggested idea over the past month, this title will garner a massive competitive following, and the temptation for players in other titles to make the jump could prove to be too much. Riot Games is not without critics, but their ability to support and operate an esport is top-notch.
Opportunities for players who are talented enough to compete at a high-level within VALORANT are abundant right now. There are many more chances for the players who get in early on this title to make a name for themselves and turn their passion for this game into a career.
Unfortunately, we’ve yet to receive anything substantial from Riot Games detailing how VALORANT esports will look. One thing we do know is that some of the biggest names across first-person shooters have taken notice and like what they see. The questions we’d like answered, Which players are next to make similar announcements?, and When exactly will VALORANT Esports startup?