2nd June 2021 – 2:01pm
This time, it's official, Sentinels buys TenZ. The team that won the Valorant Masters 2 in Reykjavik bought the Canadian prodigy for millions of dollars.
The news came from the team's official Twitter account. No trailer or big announcement. Just a simple " He's here to stay." and everyone understood who and what Sentinels talked about.
It must be said that the question had been on everyone's lips for several months now. Tyson "TenZ" Ngo was originally a Cloud9 players who said he had lost interest in competing. When Sentinels lost their star player, Sinatraa, and needed to find a replacement who was at least as good, the organisation approached TenZ and leased his contract to Cloud9 for a month. During this short period of time where he went from blue and white to red and black, TenZ led his new teammates to a win at the Valorant Masters 1 NA.
Once the lease was over, it remained to be seen whether Sentinels was interested in renewing the lease or to buy the player outright. TenZ himself said he was unsure of what to do next, but he was back in the game and wanted to join Sentinels for good. With Sinatraa's trial and tribulations showing no signs of being resolved, Sentinels decided to opt for a longer-term plan.
Sentinels therefore bought TenZ's contract from Cloud9 for the tidy sum of $1.25 million. This is a significant investment that would have cost even more if it had not been made well before the official announcement. According to Jack Etienne, Cloud9 boss, the deal was struck before Sentinels qualified for the Masters 2.
It was a dangerous deal for us as we knew we would soon face Sentinels in the Iceland Qualifiers, however it was important to Tyson to play and I wanted to make it happen for him.Jack Etienne, on Reddit
For the record, TenZ found out about his contract buyout after he won the Valorant Masters 2. According to Jack Etienne, the staff of both teams did not want to disturb his concentration during the tournament. TenZ is now a player of Sentinels. He will continue to wear the team colours for the next few months. Teams who were hoping to see Sentinels lose momentum after the end of his lease may be disappointed!
More than ever, the fate of Sinatraa is uncertain. The whole story was originally set in motion because the former Overwatch star was accused of assaulting his ex-girlfriend, with records to prove it.
Sinatraa has been suspended by Riot Games while an internal investigation is conducted into the veracity of the accusations. As the case is also in the hands of the US courts, Riot Games has decided to defer their findings once they are made public. Riot's competitive team has nevertheless decided to ban Sinatraa from the Valorant professional circuit for six months.
So, is there a place left for Sinatraa on Sentinels now that TenZ has joined the team? Even though we've already seen teams of 6, reinstating a player with a tainted reputation who hasn't been able to train in real conditions for so long could be complicated. That said, Sinatraa has reappeared publicly on Twitch several times over the past few weeks. Just last night, he was in duo with ShahZaM, another Sentinels' player. The evening did not go well for the two players, with the chat reproaching ShahZaM for continuing to support Sinatraa. The latter burst into tears before cutting off his webcam.
We are still far from the final denouement of this story mixing descent into hell for one and dazzling ascension for the other.