T1 Valorant team has been going through some changes recently, first welcoming David Denis as the new Head Coach and then signing Timothy “autimatic” Ta just a day later. The changes for the organisation wouldn’t stop there, as T1 broke the news on Twitter, announcing the departure of two of their founding team members.
In a video posted on Twitter, Head Coach David Denis expressed his thoughts on Braxton “brax” Pierce and Keven “AZK” Larivière leaving the organisation, praising both players and stating “we sincerely hope that you stay fans of both Azk and Brax wherever they go next”. He then goes on to say how this was a change that was needed and how the team is really excited to show what they’re made of.
Both players said their goodbyes to the fans, and to the organisation, thanking them for all the support they’ve been shown.
Brax said he learned a lot while at T1 and had a lot of appreciation, commenting how he was proud of everything the team accomplished even though they didn’t get as far as he would’ve liked. AZK simply said his time at T1 had come to an end, and that he hoped the fans would continue to support him in his next adventure.
Thank you for being such an integral part of T1 VALORANT – best of luck in your future endeavours & we'll see you on the server! pic.twitter.com/maNryDGNxl
— T1 (@T1) February 8, 2021
The news was met with mixed reactions from the fans, many of whom expressed concern for the team now that both Brax and Azk were gone, some even questioning T1’s move. However, the fans have shown an outpour of support for both players, sharing positive comments and speculating where they both might end up next.
The organisation’s decision to make such drastic changes was a surprise, but also warranted. T1 has been struggling in the competitive scene, going through a turbulent season with unremarkable results.
They started off strong during the T1 x NSG Showdown back in July last year, finishing second just behind TSM. What seemed like a great start would quickly turn sour. The team went on a 5th-8th placement streak throughout multiple tournaments, the most notable one being First Strike North America, where they were kicked out by 100 Thieves right away in the Quarterfinals. The crew didn’t fare too well in the most recent first round of the Valorant Challengers either, finishing 9th-16th in the Open Qualifiers and missing the Main Event.
What happens next with T1 remains to be seen. The crew is still missing the 5th and final member to complete the roster, so we can probably expect more news from the organisation in the upcoming days or weeks. It’s an opportunity for T1 to reinvent themselves and show everyone they’re capable of fighting at the very top.
Brax and AZK will also be taking a new step on their journey. They’re both free agents on the market now, with rich careers in both Valorant and CS: GO, and as such, they will undoubtedly have offers coming from all sides. We don’t know where they’ll end up next, but it’s certain that whoever picks them up is going to get two amazing additions to their rosters.