Cloud9 acquires Gambit Esports

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Gambit Esports

Cloud9 Acquires Gambit Esports Lineup to Re-Enter CS:GO

Vignesh Raghuram
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Highlights
Cloud9 has signed the Russia-based Gambit Esports’ CS:GO squad that had been playing under the ‘Players’ banner
The acquisitions include Vladislav “nafany⁠” Gorshkov, Dmitry ‘“sh1ro⁠” Sokolov, Abay ‘“HObbit⁠” Khasenov, Sergey ‘“Ax1Le⁠” Rykhtorov, and Timofey “⁠interz”’ Yakushin
The team will be coached by Konstantin “groove” Pikiner, with Ivan “F_1N” Kochugov joining it as the analyst.

Cloud9 has finally re-entered competitive CS:GO after being absent from the scene for over a year. The North-American organization announced that it has acquired the Russia-based Gambit Esports’ CS:GO squad that had been playing under the ‘Players’ banner. The team is expected to make its debut under the Cloud9 moniker at the upcoming PGL Antwerp Major, scheduled to kick off on May 9.

Cloud9 returns to CS:GO with an All-Star lineup

Cloud9 is one of the most iconic organizations in CS:GO’s history, best remembered for its victory at the ELEAGUE Major: Boston 2018, where it made history by becoming the first and only North American team to win a Major. So its absence from the pro scene certainly left fans disappointed.

However, it has returned with a bang by signing one of the best CS:GO rosters in the world, which features:

  • Vladislav “nafany⁠” Gorshkov

  • Dmitry ‘“sh1ro⁠” Sokolov

  • Abay ‘“HObbit⁠” Khasenov

  • Sergey ‘“Ax1Le⁠” Rykhtorov

  • Timofey “⁠interz”’ Yakushin

The team will be coached by Konstantin “groove” Pikiner, while Ivan “F_1N” Kochugov will be joining the team as its analyst.

“This week, we are returning to the scene with an iconic lineup,” said Cloud9 on its official announcement. “This collection of players have shown incredible promise and talent, and we are thrilled that we can continue to support their passions and careers.” Furthermore, Cloud9 stated that it would assist the team with relocation, housing, equipment, boot camps and much more in an interview with Sports Business Journal (SBJ).

Cloud9’s previous lineup, dubbed ‘The Colossus’ was an international roster managed by former caster Henry “HenryG” Greer. Despite signing some of the biggest names in CS:GO at that point of time, the team had underwhelming results in various tournaments before being ultimately disbanded due to logistical problems surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.

The team stated that it has learned from its mistakes since then. “We learned that moving players halfway around the world in a pandemic situation where they can’t leave their apartment is a recipe for disaster,” said Jack Etienne, CEO and founder of Cloud9, to SBJ. “We won’t make that mistake again, and we’re ready to move forward with what we’ve learned.”

It will certainly be interesting to see if Cloud9 can accomplish more with its new lineup which is supposedly the third best team in the world according to HLTV, at the time of the announcement.

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Vignesh has been covering the esports industry for nearly 5 years starting with the early days of the DPC. His industry expertise includes experience in Dota 2, CS:GO and Mobile Esports coverage.