100 Thieves surprised everyone last weekend when they benched Cody Sun for newcomer Rikara. Not only had Rikara never played a meaningful game on the LCS stage, he hadn’t even had much practice with the team prior to the semifinals match.
As of yet, 100T have declined to provide an extended explanation about Cody Sun’s benching. And for his part, Cody Sun only released a short and vague statement praising his teammates and asserting that there was nothing physically wrong with him. So, just about everything we know about the situation is a combination of speculation and conjecture. And that’s the first problem.
In sports, communication is key. Communication between teammates, coaches and management, as well as communication between the organization and its fans. In this situation, it appears that 100T failed in both regards. According to Cody Sun’s tweets from Saturday and Rikara’s statements after the game, it doesn’t seem as if this was a decision that any player was given advance notice of.
Cody Sun was instructed to watch 100T’s match from home
Thoughts on today
— Cody Sun (@Cody_Sun1) September 3, 2018
Of course, that could’ve just been part of the strategy. But because 100T has failed to communicate with fans or press about the situation, we’re left to speculate and form our own conclusions.
As for the future of 100T, it seems highly unlikely that Cody Sun will be part of the team for much longer. If the coaches or team would rather have an inexperienced rookie than him in a semifinals match, then something is wrong. And more likely than not, it’s a problem that isn’t likely to be resolved amicably.
Another problem is the fact that 100T’s season is far from over. There’s a good chance they’ll qualify for Worlds based on points alone and if not, they’re guaranteed a spot in the NA gauntlet. And they still have their third place match this weekend. There’s no telling who will start for them in any of those games and if Cody Sun does start, how motivated will he be to play for a team that unceremoniously benched him in a crucial series?
The future of 100 Thieves is shaky at best. They’ll need to figure things out quickly or else their 2018 campaign will be over and they’ll have the whole off-season to get things in order.