League of Legends coach Kim “kkOma” Jeong-gyun, jungler Kim “Clid” Tae-min, and top laner Kim “Khan” Dong-ha’s contracts have ended with T1.
“We respect their decision to explore free agency and are actively continuing conversations to have them return to T1 in 2020 and beyond,” T1 said. “As we weigh all free agency options, we are working hard to make our fans proud and bring home another World Championship in 2020.”
This news comes after T1 fell two games short of the Worlds 2019 finals to Europe’s G2 Esports earlier this month. The team had a promising group stage, losing just one game to Fnatic, but struggled to keep it together in the knockout stage.
T1’s famed slow and coordinated style, adopted throughout the LCK, proved to be out of meta against the LPL and LEC representatives. Although kkOma is one of the most respected coaches in League history, he could be to blame for the team’s failure to adapt.
Jungler Clid, on the other hand, was one of the redeeming factors of the lineup, carrying the squad through much of the year and showcasing his dominance at Worlds. Top laner Khan had moments of brilliance, but his playstyle has inevitably been a mismatch for the roster.
It’s unknown if kkOma, Clid, and Khan will return to T1. The trio is highly lucrative and there will likely be a bidding war for their services.
There hasn’t been an official announcement concerning the contract of superstar mid laner Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok yet. He’s expected to remain with T1 until 2021, however.