Ex-CS:GO pro Michael “shroud” Grzesiek joins Sentinels’ VALORANT team

After four years of retirement from the competitive esports scene, former CS:GO pro Michael “shroud” Grzesiek announced on Friday last week that he will be playing for the Los Angeles-based Sentinels’ VALORANT division.

The announcement from shroud and Sentinels was shocking to many since the player initially had shown zero interest in making his return to play competitively after hanging his Cloud9 jersey in 2018. Sentinels’ decision was also questioned by many about its legitimacy.

In responding to this, shroud went on to his stream to explain and confirm that the move was real and that he will be making an appearance in the upcoming VALORANT Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) this August. The addition of the 28-year-old could help Sentinels from getting back to their proper footing following the humiliating end to last year’s tournament runs.

Shroud’s history, former pro turned streamer

Shroud debuted his professional esports career in a short stint with Slow Motion in 2013-2014. His early career was decorated with quite a number of teams from the E-Sports Entertainment Association League (ESEA), such as the likes of Exertus eSports and Manajuma in 2014. In the same year, he received an offer to play as a stand-in for compLexity Gaming.

After bunny hopping from one team to the other, in August 2014 shroud made his way to Santa Monica playing with C9. This professional organization was responsible for his fame both in the CS:GO competitive scene and in his early streaming career. Three years after, shroud stepped down from the starting lineup and became a full-time streamer for C9.

April 18, 2019, marked the year when shroud retired from C9 to start his solo streaming career on Twitch. On March 10 the following year, the Canadian reached 100,000 Twitch subscribers. From this moment on, shroud has been focusing primarily on his streaming career.

Known as one of the most gifted gamers, shroud’s return to play competitively with Sentinels was both a piece of great news and a surprise. Following the organization’s announcement last week, many argued that it was a mere stunt and a joke from the streamer.

Shroud’s return to competitive scene with Sentinels

Shroud confirmed via one of his live streams that Sentinels had approached him to be their fifth member.

“I was having dinner, we were leaving at about 11 pm. Our cars were there, ready to go valet. Yoni from Loaded said ‘hey can I throw your name in the bucket of Sentinels for LCQ as their 5th’,” said shroud.

The team was definitely in need of finding Hunter “SicK” Mims’ replacement after the player has been out with an extended leave due to personal reasons. Seeing that SicK would potentially be out for the remaining of this season, Sentinels tried their luck with shroud — which the effort proved to be fruitful.

“I said yeah, and he said you’ll have to boot camp and you’re gonna have to go hard and I was like yeah obviously. I’m not going into half-a**, that’d be dumb. That would just be a sh**ty move you know? For me and the team,” shroud added.

Shroud also addressed that the signing was real, saying “they all thought I was trolling. But I was not trolling.”

The addition of shroud to Sentinels’ starting lineup will make this season’s VALORANT tournaments interesting as the team tries to kick off their redemption arc following last year’s misfortunes. In VCT LCQ, Sentinels is among seven other teams competing in the North American region and one of the competitors is shroud’s former CS:GO team, C9.