Image source: LoL Esports
100 Thieves, one of the 10 franchises involved in the League of Legends Championship Series (LCS), has announced the signing of former Cloud9 head coach Bok "Reapered" Han-gyu to the organization. In the process, they have also parted ways with their previous head coach, Anthony 'Tony' "Zikz" Gray.
The news follows 100 Thieves' fourth place finish in the 2021 LCS Mid-Season Showdown after losing 3-1 to third-place finishers TSM. Despite signing the bulk of Golden Guardians' former roster—a roster that almost cost TSM its 2020 Worlds qualification—,the squad was unable to carry the momentum to 2021 as their leader in 2020, Kevin "Hauntzer" Yarnell, was not part of the players that switched to 100 Thieves.
Furthermore, the team was unable to find stability in the mid lane as Tanner "Damonte" Damonte was benched, and as Tommy "ryoma" Le replaced him. The team's mid lane switches may continue as Turkish esports media Esporin has reported that one of Reapered's former players, Fnatic mid laner Yasin "Nisqy" Dincer, is reportedly eyed by the organization.
Zikz's tenure within 100 Thieves has ended despite having the organization's initial trust as his contract was extended to the end of the 2021 season. In 2020, the team started strong in the spring split but failed to make a deep run in the playoffs, losing to TSM 3-2, before struggling in the summer split after performing roster changes, losing in the first round of the summer playoffs to Evil Geniuses 0-3.
As for Reapered, he inherits a squad whose firepower was in full display in the 2020 summer split, and whose cooperation with Kim "Ssumday" Chan-ho resulted in a semifinal exit in the 2021 LCS Lock-in Tournament. Although the team relatively struggled during the season, it remained a frontrunner in the 2021 season, and is in position to make an impact come summer playoffs.
Reapered excelled in conveying his vision of the game to his previous teams, at times taking drastic measures to that effect as his roster overhaul in the 2018 summer split—marked by the promotion of academy talent to the main lineup—led a previously struggling squad to a World Championship semifinal showing. The organization enjoyed a lengthy period as contenders with him as a head coach, before they parted ways after the team failed to make the 2020 World Championship despite crushing the competition in the spring season and claiming the spring split title.