Counter Logic Gaming has announced that they have signed Tanner “Damonte” Damonte as their newest starting mid-laner for Week 7 of the 2021 LCS Summer Split. The 23-year-old American will replace Eugene “Pobelter” Park after being away from the professional scene for nearly two months.
CLG announced the change after going 1-2 in Week 6 in which they defeated Team SoloMid and lost to FlyQuest and Dignitas. Entering Week 7, they sit in a tie for last place with a 10-26 overall record and two games off FLY for the eighth and final playoff spot in the LCS Championship. For the summer, they are 5-13 which is identical to their record from spring.
With this latest roster swap, CLG becomes the eighth team to do so across the LCS in the middle of the regular season, with TSM and 100 Thieves being the remaining teams that haven’t done so.
While instituting a change to address a team’s struggling performance comes as no surprise, for CLG’s case, their manner in doing so was mired in prominent controversy. In a video, they posted as part of their Bud Light Cooldown series, which captured everything behind the scenes of the LCS team, their general manager Daniel “Tafokints” Lee discussed the likelihood of him making roster changes during a private meeting with the players. Furthermore, Tafo mentioned that had CLG gone 3-0 for Week 6, the roster might’ve remained intact, but because they went 1-2, such change was deemed necessary.
“I’m going to be upfront. I am looking at roster swaps. It’s been two months and we’re not really progressing, so there’s very likely going to change this week. I’m exploring options so this might be the last time that we have this roster of five playing together,” said Tafo.
At the start of this year, Damonte played for 100T for the Lock-In tournament and a majority of the spring split before he was benched for Tommy “ry0ma” Le. After being demoted to the Academy team, he placed 3rd in both the Arena of Legends and LCS Proving Grounds tournaments. He eventually left the organization in late May and took to streaming while awaiting his next venture. Previously, he qualified to Worlds 2019 as a member of the final Clutch Gaming roster before they rebranded as Dignitas.