Mousesports is parting ways with two of its popular CS:GO stars after several years together.
The German organization announced today that three crucial players on the European lineup are leaving the team—Chris “chrisJ” de Jong, Martin “STYKO” Styk, and coach Sergey “lmbt” Bezhanov. The trio is being placed on the bench, leaving only Tomas “oskar” Stastny, Robin “ropz” Kool, and Miikka “suNny” Kemppi on the active roster.
“Parting ways after one and a half years and 19 offline tournaments is not easy but sometimes a few steps back can be multiple steps forward,” star fragger Miikka “suNny” Kemppi said in the team’s announcement. “There are no hard feelings or any bad blood inside the team, we just drove ourselves into a situation we couldn’t get out of and something had to change. It was the most successful run for all of us and I hope that this will change the careers of all of us for the better… Looking forward to a new and fresh chapter now, where we can be consistent contenders for titles again.”
These changes follow the team’s disappointing finish at the IEM Katowice European Minor. Mouz was eliminated in the group stage of the Minor, where they lost to Valiance twice. It was a surprising result since Valiance is a newer and weaker team in terms of firepower compared to Mouz. But it seems the team may have lost faith in ChrisJ’s leadership over time, as their last championship win was at ESL One New York in September.
“After the most successful season of our history, we already saw some issues within the team towards the end of the year and unfortunately we couldn’t turn it around in Katowice,” Mouz CEO Stefan Wendt said. “To secure competitive success in 2019 we feel it is necessary that the team gets a fresh start. It’s a sad day for our organisation, as [lmbt], [STYKO], and [ChrisJ] have been highly valued members of our team for a long time but we have to look forward and work hard to keep our place among the world’s best Counter-Strike teams.”
ChrisJ’s five year tenure as captain of Mousesports officially ends today, along with STYKO’s two-year run with him. It’s possibility that Mouz brings on an in-game leader who’s a free agent, like former FaZe Clan star Finn “karrigan” Andersen, because they’re lacking a playcaller now.
Mouz’s incoming two players will likely be revealed in the coming weeks, especially considering the next set of imminent roster shuffles following the Katowice Major, which ends in early March.