Heroic and its CS:GO roster have been fully accepted as a permanent partner of both the ESL Pro League and the Louvre Agreement, ESL announced today. In its statement, ESL said Heroic is one of “three successful teams” to apply for partnership during the Request for Proposals period, referencing BIG and FURIA joining last year.
ESL said that Heroic was originally accepted into ESL Pro League as a partnered team back in 2021, but their entrance into the league and the Louvre Agreement stalled because of an ESIC investigation into the team at the time. In September 2021, former coach HUNDEN alleged that Heroic players were complicit in his use of the spectator bug that landed him an ESIC suspension a year earlier.
ESIC’s investigation into the matter cleared most of the Heroic roster of any wrongdoing. The only exception to this was former player Nikolaj “niko” Kristensen, who received a warning and a six-month probationary period after admitting “complicity in the cheating exploits of [HUNDEN].” ESIC commissioner Ian Smith said that HUNDEN “ruthlessly manipulated” niko, who has ADHD and Asperger’s Syndrome, which purportedly affects one’s ability to know right from wrong and make values-based decisions on their own, according to the ADHD and Asperger’s Team at the National Autistic Society and the ADHD Foundation.
With the investigation now complete, Heroic was unanimously voted into the league and the Louvre Agreement by all existing members.
Heroic will compete in ESL Pro League Season 16 now as a fully partnered member, beginning on Aug. 31, 2022. Heroic themselves are former Pro League champions, having won Season 13 via an all-time great clutch from captain cadiaN against Gambit. Gambit as an organization is no longer partnered with ESL Pro League due to Russian sanctions, but the former roster will compete in Season 16 under the Cloud9 banner.