The past two days have been a roller coaster for TSM fans, especially after former star AD carry Doublelift voiced his hatred of the team on his stream, explaining that it was mostly because of co-owner Andy “Reginald” Dinh. Soon after, however, Reginald released a full explanation of the roster situation on the team’s subreddit.
TSM was considering its options after Bjergsen revealed his plans to retire at the end of 2020, according to Reginald. Doublelift was also “unsure” of whether he wanted to play League of Legends professionally in the following year, which prompted the staff to start looking at a possible rebuild in 2021. After a few days, the superstar marksman finally told the team that he had changed his mind about retirement and would compete if TSM signed PowerOfEvil and “any good support player, no matter what language they spoke.”
As a result, TSM committed time and money to signing PowerOfEvil, while also inquiring about various big-name supports like SwordArt, Palette, and Lehends. Negotiations were apparently going well with SwordArt, but the team did tell Doublelift that there was a possibility of the deal not going through.
After a major snag in the talks between SwordArt, TSM started to introduce other options from around the world to Doublelift. But the 28-year-old responded that he wouldn’t want to play with a non-English speaking support and that he “may not be as motivated if we had him play in a roster that didn’t meet his standard of a fully-English speaking roster,” according to Reginald.
This sudden change of heart was also made in November when most ADCs were signed and TSM were on the cusp of transferring Lost to Evil Geniuses. Because of the constant uncertainty around Doublelift’s retirement, Reginald said that all staff and players committed to Lost as the team’s starting marksman for the 2021 competitive year, while also signing SwordArt.
“[Doublelift] also has this misconception that he was replaced both times solely by me, but in reality the decision is made collectively by the players and staff he works with day to day,” Reginald said. “Even after SwordArt committed to TSM, we collectively thought that committing to Lost was the best decision at the moment as building around a developing player rather than a player that constantly flip flops on wanting to play would be better for TSM in the long run.”
Reginald still holds Doublelift’s legacy in high regard, but also said that “despite his skill, he is difficult to work with and his teammates and staff on multiple teams in the past have chosen to remove him because of it.”
Now, TSM will look to bounce back from its unsuccessful run to the 2021 World Championship. This was the third year out of the last four that the team missed the event. As one of the biggest—and most successful—organizations in North America, many fans will be curious to see what path TSM takes for 2022.
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