| Tags: Valorant
| Author Xavier Geitz
The Guard’s Entire Valorant Roster Restricted Free Agents
After Riot Games' partnered teams announcement, The Guard is currently off duty.
Many saw the writing on the wall when Riot Games announced their franchising plans early this year. We knew something like this was bound to happen. But this RosterMania is becoming more hectic than expected. And it's only day 1.
The Guard is one of the freshest faces in competitive Valorant. The Guard joined the Valorant scene less than a year ago and, in that time, made a name for itself as an organization to watch. The Guard took down OpTic Gaming, one of the best performing teams of the year, at the North America Stage 1 Challengers back in March. But the NA Last-Chance Qualifiers is where The Guard really shined.
The Guard came out of the gates strong, knocking Sentinels to the Lower Bracket in the Quarterfinals. A Sentinels roster that bolstered itself with the additions of Shroud and Zellsis. They quickly followed that up with a 2-0 sweep of Cloud9, followed by a shocking 2-0 upset sweep of FaZe Clan in the Upper Bracket Final. Unfortunately for The Guard, 100 Thieves would sweep them in the Grand Finals.
But still. NA Last-Chance Qualifiers runner-ups less than a year into Valorant? Not bad for rookies. Even though The Guard obviously couldn't compete in VCT 2022 Champs, many were looking forward to the future of this young and promising organization.
But after the revelation that The Guard is not one of the 30 partnered teams, we may have a “What If” situation on our hands.
Changing Of The Guard?
Restricted F/A I play dualists and I am confident that I will play at a high level of skill. I can play other agents as needed too. Contact @Seowulf@TheGuard is a very grateful org for trusting me sincerely. Thank you for giving me the opportunity and taking good care of me.
— T1 Sayaplayer (@Sayaplayer) September 21, 2022
Many organizations that didn't get a partner spot are doing what's best for their players and allowing them to explore their options for the upcoming VCT 2023. The Guard included.
Restricted F/A – I play every agent in the game at an international level, true primary flex. LF partnered opportunities. Contact @Seowulf.
Extremely grateful to the entire @TheGuard org & for my amazing teammates. Building a championship team in months w them was a privilege.💜
— GUARD JonahP 🇮🇹🇨🇦 (@JonahP_) September 21, 2022
Four of five of The Guard's active roster, valyn, neT, sayaslayer, and JonahP, have announced that they are restricted, free agents. Trent has yet to say anything, but it's safe to assume he is also a restricted free agent.
With the news that @TheGuard was declined for Riot Partnership, they’ve allowed me to seek partnered team opportunities. I am looking to prove that I am a top sentinel player in the world with these new meta changes. Can also IGL and initiator
Contacts: DM's or @derrick_truong
— GUARD neT (@neT_valorant) September 21, 2022
While it's true that each of the three new partnered Leagues has four spots that tier-two teams can secure, for the players themselves, it's a risky gambit. Unless something changes later, Riot Games isn't planning on adding any new League slots. Once they're full up, that's it.
With the news that @TheGuard was declined for Riot Partnership, they’ve allowed me to seek partnered team opportunities. I’m looking to IGL and bring a winning team culture to any team. Looking to play Smokes/Initiator
Contact: DMs / firstname.lastname@example.org
— GUARD valyn (@valynfps) September 21, 2022
The safest option for players is to secure a roster spot on one of the partnered teams as soon as possible. And unfortunately for The Guard, this potential Cinderella story may be coming to an abrupt end. And that is a real shame. It would've been great to see just how far this The Guard roster could go. But come VCT 2023, it's possible an entirely new team will be standing guard for The Guard.
This isn't the first potential organizational casualty due to franchising, and it certainly won't be the last.
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