Chris “chrisJ” de Jong could soon have a new home.
The Counter-Strike: Global Offensive star and longtime member of Mousesports took to social media and teased that he has signed with a new team. Though he did not explicitly state where he is headed, his post on Instagram stated “BIG news coming this week” and included a German flag. These two things suggest ChrisJ is headed to BIG.
BIG making some roster changes comes as no surprise to those who followed the team.
The German squad looked solid through the end of 2018, earning a spot in the 2019 Katowice Major by placing in the top eight at FACEIT Major: London, and posting solid performances in smaller events through the winter season. That success had BIG positioned for a potential deep run in Katowice, but things went poorly for the team in Poland.
Despite entering the Legends Stage as the No. 7 seed, BIG immediately washed out of the second set of groups. The team was swiftly eliminated with a 0-3 record despite facing relatively manageable opposition in Team Vitality, G2 Esports, and ENCE. That flop stripped the team’s Challenger Status for the upcoming Berlin Major and will force BIG to work its way through a crowded European qualifier in order to compete.
ChrisJ might be exactly the person for the job of helping to turn BIG around.
Joining Mousesports in 2013, ChrisJ helped the team grow from the regional level to being a regular presence at majors. Mousesports hit a number of home runs in 2018 with first-place finishes at StarLadder & i-League StarSeries Season 4 and ESL One: New York 2018, but it struggled with consistency issues throughout the year.
Attempts to stabilize things with small roster tweaks backfired, and resulted in mouz being eliminated from the group stages of the European Minor. With the major then out of reach, the team kicked off an extensive roster shakeup by dropping ChrisJ, Martin “STYKO” Styk, and coach Sergey “lmbt” Bezhanov.
Though ChrisJ is likely inbound, it remains a mystery what BIG’s long-term plans are for its roster. The team still retains the full roster it took to the Katowice Major and has not officially acknowledged ChrisJ’s signing as of yet.
Fans can expect to find out the casualties of BIG’s Katowice Major misfire alongside the official announcement of ChrisJ’s signing.