Cloud9 and T1 have arranged a mutual trade where Cloud9 traded two of their Valorant players, Xeta and Autumn, to T1, in exchange for T1’s Curry. This move came right after Cloud9 took their first VCT NA Challengers 2: Week 1 victory over Evil Geniuses.
Xeta and Autumn will bolster T1’s struggling Valorant lineup, while Curry will take over Xeta’s role in Cloud9 in the Valorant Champions Tour.
Valorant esports organisations trading players has always been a thing, but those trades would almost always occur after a major esports tournament or between larger events. So to see Cloud9 swap two of their key members in the middle of an ongoing Valorant Champions Tour event is a bit strange.
Although Curry is an excellent Valorant player with a plethora of experience, him jumping into a completely new environment will certainly come with some challenges. He’ll only have a few days to adjust to the new environment before the next wave of matches starts. This could potentially cause issues for Cloud9 and derail their trajectory in the VCT NA Challengers 2 group stage.
What Was The Reason for the Swap?
At this point, it’s unclear why Cloud9 agreed to this trade in the middle of an ongoing tournament. The fans, as well as the players, are completely baffled. If we were to speculate, there could be a couple of reasons why the deal went through.
First, it could be the fact Xeta and Autumn insisted on it. They came to Cloud9 on the same day, and they left together for T1 on the same day. There’s a reddit comment by Cloud9’s CEO, Jack Etienne, that confirms this theory:
“Xeta and Autumn have been wonderful to work with but in the end they were ready for a new challenge and I’ve always supported these requests by players and coaches when possible. The entire team and myself wish them well.”
Also, trades like these usually involve some sum of money, so Cloud9 must have benefitted in this regard as well, otherwise they wouldn’t have rushed the deal and risked potential disasters in VCT Challengers 2.
Lastly, it’s very possible that T1 plans on rebuilding the roster completely and perhaps even moving to Korea. In that case, it would make sense for Xeta and Autumn to join early and lay the foundations for a future all-Korean T1 Valorant squad.
How Will Curry Fit in?
It’s hard to say whether Curry will be able to completely replace Xeta, or if he’ll perform on the same level as him. We’ll have to wait a few weeks and follow Cloud9’s progress through the VCT NA Challengers 2 group stage.
However, he’ll most likely perform better than he did in T1, since Cloud9 as a team is in a much better shape right now.
The fans are still perplexed by this trade and they’ll be the harshest judges in this case. Adapting to the team will be one thing, but Curry winning the trust of C9 fans will be his most difficult task.
If you’re interested to see how Cloud9 will perform with Curry, you can catch them live on May 22 where they’ll be playing against OpTiC Gaming.