Team Liquid has announced their intention to part ways with their strategic coach Jang “Cain” Nu-ri. Cain, after three and a half years on Team Liquid as a coach.
He led TL’s rosters to four LCS titles, an MSI final, and a period of undisputed domestic dominance that lasted the better part of two years.
Thank you @liquidcain. When we were at our lowest point, you brought us to heights we could only dare to dream of achieving. We're grateful for the growth you've given our team the past 3.5 years and wish you all the best in your next steps.— Team Liquid LoL (@TeamLiquidLoL) November 12, 2020
➡️ https://t.co/mGYcUVF1bZ pic.twitter.com/RfK2qN2W0S
To many, the face of Team Liquid has been standout players like Doublelift (formerly), CoreJJ, and Impact. The coaches often work behind the scenes, but Cain was given the honor of Coach of the Split twice in the Summer Splits of 2019 and 2020. Numerous players associated with the organization, both past and present, shared appreciative thoughts on his leadership and expertise.
Was great to get to work with you through Summer split and Worlds. Amazing legacy at TL— Josh Leesman (@TL_Jatt) November 12, 2020
Cain was the best coach I've ever had (until Bjergsen 😳) and I will never forget how he helped me develop as a player and person. Thanks for all your hard work and leadership.— Yiliang Peng (@TSMDoublelift) November 12, 2020
Thank you coach nim , I have learned so much since i join Team liquid!— Yongin Jo (@TLCoreJJ) November 12, 2020
Team Liquid, in a farewell article to the coach, implied that his time as a coach will not end and that he may seek new opportunities on other teams: “...Cain and Team Liquid will meet again on opposite ends. Whether it’s in the playoffs or on the international stage. In that moment, we can show him what he taught us and what we’ve learned since.”
Cain’s time at Team Liquid was an illustrious one. (Picture: Team Liquid)
Cain, previously a top-tier support in the LCK for NaJin Sword, transitioned into a coaching role during the Summer split of 2015. Despite not finding immediate success, he would move to TL in 2017 and led the organization to a “historic four-peat” that saw his streak of domestic championship victories between Spring 2018 and Summer 2019.
Despite crumbling in the first half of 2020 in part due to the underperformance of Doublelift, who would later part ways with the team to play for TSM, Cain would bring in TL Academy AD Carry Edward “Tactical” Ra to a first-place regular season finish, a third-place playoff finish, and a spot at Worlds where they went 1-1 with semi-finalist G2 Esports and finalist Suning Gaming.
With numerous changes to rosters and coaching staffs around the world, Cain is equipped with a resume filled with success and would likely be invaluable to any team. If he’s on the market, there’s likely no shortage of teams that’ll look to sign him. Only time will tell who’ll be the victor in that war.