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Valorant’s Biggest Star in NA, Cloud9 TenZ, Quits Competitive Play

Abhimannu Das
13/Jan/2021 09:16 am

Cloud9's TenZ has stepped down from competitive play in Valorant.
The player will focus his efforts on YouTube and streaming for the time being.
He has indicated that he may return to competitive play when the time is right.

Cloud9 announced that Tyson “TenZ” Ngo has stepped down from the Valorant roster and will no longer pursue competitive play in Valorant. He will be working as a content creator moving forward and may return to competitive play in the future. The announcement is one of Valorant’s most shocking moments just weeks after Riot announced its biggest esports endeavor yet, the Valorant Champions Tour. 

Who Is TenZ?

TenZ is one of the best Valorant players right from the beta. He was the first player to reach the Radiant rank (previously known as Valorant when he earned the highest rank), while Dafran holds the distinction of achieving the same feat but solo. Since Tenz’s move from CS:GO, he has been one of the best performing players in the game and has even secured the number one spot on the official leaderboards multiple times.

He had the highest combat score in all Ignition series tournaments he participated in and has been an all-star performer. Unfortunately, he could not win Valorant First Strike with Cloud 9 despite his valiant efforts in nearly every match. 

Cloud9 has had a rough patch in Valorant’s esports scene with a last-place finish at the JBL Quantum Cup’s group stage, and the team was also knocked out of the First Strike NA quarterfinals. TenZ was C9’s first player, and his departure will put a huge dent in the roster. His former team is yet to announce a new player who will be replacing him for future competitive play. The current C9 roster does not fare well against Sentinels and TSM, and we will have to wait and see if they can shake things up for the 2021 season. 

Is Valorant’s Competitive Scene Not Worth Pursuing?

Numerous debates have been raging since Tenz departed from Valorant, with fans talking about how Valorant is unrewarding for professional play. Riot Games is working on the game’s esports ecosystem, and the game is yet to complete its first anniversary. The biggest event that will set sail international Valorant esports is yet to begin to understand the viability of pursuing Valorant esports competitively fully. 

TenZ is already one of Twitch's biggest content creators, and he will most likely be playing more Valorant but will not be pursuing it competitively. He has indicated that he will come “come back to competitive play when I see the time is right.” Currently, he will be focusing his efforts on streaming and YouTube. 

RELATED:  TenZ Becomes First Player from NA Region to Reach VALORANT Rank

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Abhimannu Das is a part of the content team at AFK Gaming and a lifelong obsessive gamer. He is covering content on esports titles like VALORANT, CS: GO, Call of Duty, Fortnite, PUBG and more. He also writes opinion pieces, cover stories and conducts interviews with esports professionals.