Professional CS:GO players Gabriel “FalleN” Toledo, Jake “Stewie2K” Yip, and Michael “Grim” Wince are no longer part of Team Liquid’s active lineup, the organization’s general manager Steve Perino announced today in a video.
The benching of these players comes amid multiple reports that Liquid will rebuild its CS:GO lineup for 2022. The team’s morale fell apart after they failed to qualify for PGL Stockholm Major playoffs in early November and they played the last tournaments of the year—BLAST Premier Fall Final, IEM Winter, and BLAST Premier World Final—without practicing together. Perino said Liquid will provide more information on its social channels in the coming weeks.
Out of the three players benched, Stewie2K was the longest-standing on the roster. The ELEAGUE Boston Major champion joined Liquid in December 2018 and played an important part in the team’s winning streak in the first semester of 2019. The North Americans won IEM Sydney, DreamHack Masters Dallas, ESL Pro League season nine finals, and ESL One Cologne in a row, which gave them the Intel Grand Slam season two title.
Grim, on the other hand, arrived on Liquid in August 2020 to replace Nicholas “nitr0” Cannella, who would later switch to VALORANT. The only championship he won was the online cs_summit eight in May 2021, same as FalleN, who joined in January 2021 to replace Russel “Twistzz” Van Dulken and take over the in-game leadership duties.
Liquid is reportedly reuniting with nitr0, signing Richard “shox” Papillon from Vitality and acquiring Joshua “oSee” Ohm from Extra Salt. The three would play with Jonathan “EliGE” Jablonowski and Keith “NAF” Markovic, the two players remaining in the lineup.
It seems the benched players also have their future lined up. FalleN is working on assembling a Brazilian team, Stewie2K is reportedly on his way to Evil Geniuses to reunite with Timothy “autimatic” Ta, and Grim is being targeted by Complexity.