Ryu “Kaiser” Sang-hoon confirmed his moved to a North American Overwatch organization and will join Cloud9.
Kaiser announced the move by changing his name on Twitter to “C9 Kaiser,” and Cloud9 owner Jack Etienne welcomed him in a response. Separately, the team’s coach confirmed the move during a live show.
— Jack Etienne (@C9Jack) May 22, 2017
Kaiser announced his sudden departure from Runaway on Wednesday during the OGN APEX Overwatch tournament, as team owner and captain Yoon “Runner” Dae-hoon confirmed the news during a stream after their match against Kongdoo UNCIA that same night. Kaiser wrote a goodbye letter the next day on Inven, explaining that he was moving to a “foreign organization” due to economic reasons and that the decision was incredibly emotional.
One of the best players in APEX, fans were shocked to hear the news of his departure, especially after Runaway’s second place finish in Season 2, just behind one of the best teams in the world, Lunatic-Hai. But the economic issues behind Runaway were apparent as they had no standing sponsor, and according to Kaiser’s goodbye note, he had to practice in an apartment he shared with his mother.
Fans speculated Kaiser was most likely going to move to an North American team, given that he had a strong understanding of the language. Soon news started to spread that he was going to be picked up by Cloud9, though the news had not been confirmed until Sunday.
The Cloud9 Overwatch team consists of North American players Lane “Surefour” Roberts, Adam “Adam” Eckel, Randal “Roolf” Stark, and Daniel “Gods” Graeser, as well as two Korean members in Kaiser and Koo “xepheR” Jae-mo. The team’s coach is Lee “Bishop” Beom-joon, who previously played for Korea’s Kongdoo PANTHERA until he moved to America to finish his studies and joined Cloud9 in March.