100 Thieves’ key player Nick “Nitr0” Cannella won’t be attending the first open qualifier of Champions Tour due to family leave. The organization has found a replacement in Jonathan “Silenx“ Huntington ahead of the tour.
nitr0’s leave will prevent him from attending the Champions tour initially, leaving 100 Thieves with a four-man lineup. The organization has picked up Silenx to stand-in for their expert rifle.
Welcome @Silenx_x to our competitive VALORANT team!
Silenx will be filling in temporarily for @nitr0 as he takes time off to spend with his family and newborn baby. We’re excited to start off the VALORANT 2021 season with Silenx! #100T pic.twitter.com/jmrI09NT46
— 100 Thieves Live (@100ThievesLive) January 27, 2021
Valorant’s biggest circuit is just around the corner, with over 100 teams competing for a spot in the closed qualifier. 100 Thieves’ incredible performance across different tournaments makes them the favorite pick to emerge on top in the North American region. However, the team will be entering the tour with a new face competing.
Silenx may not have tens of titles under his belt, but the young player has a gleaming record in Valorant esports. The fresh recruit has played in multiple Valorant rosters including his most recent spell at Beastcoast. The young star has competed on different fronts representing Overtime Gaming, Sakura Storm, and HIA Money Crew in the past. While he never played alongside such high-tier players, his short stint with underrated teams has streamlined his career in Valorant.
Over six months, nitr0 has easily become 100 Thieves’ front-liner. After wrapping up his run in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, nitr0 entered Valorant, becoming one of the first players to make the move. Initially, 100 Thieves was off to a rocky start, but the team has maintained a consistent performance since. With nitr0 on its roster, 100 Thieves breezed past the likes of TSM and Sentinels, emerging as the First Strike winner in North America.
After First Strike, the Valorant Champions Tour is the first esports circuit that will filter out the best from each region. Unfortunately, the North American organization has enlisted a roster that lacks nitr0. However, his absence was imminent as he announced his child’s birth on Christmas Day, later confirmed by Spencer “Hiko” Martin that 100 Thieves will acquire a stand-in. It has since become clear that nitr0 may be back in the lineup sooner than later, so 100T fans likely need not worry too much.
The team had enough time to hire a new player and kick-start the bootcamp while nitr0 was on leave. 100 Thieves’ absence from recent tournaments also hints that the team had covertly been training with the new recruit. It’s possible that the North American organization has cooked up new strategies for the Tour to qualify for Challengers, Masters, and ultimately become the Champions.