News that Luka “Perkz” Perković could well be leaving Europe entirely leaves many questions for G2.
So to recap, Perkz is looking set to leave Europe as of right now, and while six teams are bidding for his services, Cloud9 is the clear favorite. That said, there’s the small matter of Perkz’s $5 million buy-out which is causing Cloud9 a lot of issues, especially given that Cloud9 has still yet to find a team willing to pay Licorice’s buy-out. What does this mean for G2? What about Cloud9? And what will G2 do if Perkz does truly leave? There are a lot of angles to look at with this potential move that can mean everything for the parties involved.
What does this mean for G2 Esports?
Perkz has been an amazing player on G2 Esports and has been the team’s one constant through both their dynasty rosters. Often called the Nine-Star General, Perkz has proven himself as a star in both the mid lane and ADC.
Right now, however, he finds himself in the ADC role, meaning G2 Esports needs to replace him somehow. So, how do you replace such a successful member of your roster? Well, one way G2 might be able to do it is by reinvesting the massive (reported) $5 million buy-out of his contract to poach almost any ADC they want. Who are the options for G2 in the ADC role?
Right now reports are that it could be any number of players, though Juš "Crownshot" Marušič and Elias "Upset" Lipp are the two most commonly linked names, alongside G2 possibly using sub-ADC Kristoffer “P1noy” Albao Lund Pedersen. For us, Upset feels the most probable. He’s young at just 20 and is playing on a roster that looks set to be stripped apart with Origen (now Astralis) losing Alphari and likely to make a new, less experienced roster.
On the more unlikely end, G2 could look to reinvest the $5 million by making a statement signing. They can do this either by bringing in an ADC from Korea or China or potentially taking back Cloud9 ADC Jesper "Zven” Svenningsen as part of the deal for Perkz. A more outlandish call would be that they look at Martin “Rekkles” Larsson, though with G2 allegedly not willing to let Perkz move to Fnatic, we’d suspect Fnatic would likewise not want to let Rekkles join G2.
The loss of a leader
Perhaps the biggest loss to G2 Esports is the loss of Perkz the leader. When you win the number of titles Perkz has in his career, and do so as the team’s captain, you clearly have leadership qualities. After all, G2 moved Perkz to ADC to make way for Caps, which shows how valuable Perkz is to G2 Esports.
The issue now is, who do you replace him with? Marcin “Jankos” Jankowski and Martin “Wunder” Hansen are likely to be the replacements for Perkz in that leadership role. Its also possible we see Caps step up and become the new face of G2 Esports. Ultimately, you’ll find it hard to sign a leader, but it’s a battle that G2 Esports is going to take right now as they decide if they can afford to keep Perkz or even how they can keep him.
How can Cloud9 and G2 reach an agreement?
Let’s assume, given available reports, that Cloud9 is the main contender for Perkz’s signature. The deal presents two major issues that it seems, according to Jacob Wolf, need to be fixed before either can sign him. Either G2 Esports drops the asking price ($5 million) or Cloud9 finds a way to swallow that massive expense. One way for them to do that was supposed to be the sale of Eric “Licorice” Ritchie, who was due to sign for GoldenGuardians for $1.7 million. However, they’ve now pulled out (as have FlyQuest) so Cloud9 has a potential issue on their hands.
This Licorice issue could well be what makes the deal happen or not, especially given G2 is very unlikely to want Licorice themselves. This means Cloud9 might need to drop the asking price further if they want to move him on.
What’s next for the deal?
With all this in mind, we just have to wait now. As the free agency window opens on November 16, we’ll likely see a few moves confirmed which should give us an idea of what organizations are looking for what role. With COVID obviously having an impact on finances, it could be a long roster swap story that sees any number of ebbs and flows in the coming months.