Cloud9 set up a separate division for Heroes of the Storm in October 2014 and within a month, they were titled champions as well as the year later. In 2016, C9 continued on its successful journey by defeating Team Naventic and winning the North American Spring Regional which helped them be qualified for the Spring Global Championship in Seoul, South Korea.
However, with great difficulty, C9 recently announced the dissolution of their HOTS division on their official website. This means that C9 will halt playing for the game which they were titled world champions for in the year 2015.
The organization has been in HOTS longer than any other sponsor has and for almost two years, supported a 5 member team. The dissolution of the HOTS division was announced shortly after the team was unsuccessful in qualifying for the Summer Championship at DreamHack Sweden. There was no mention of the reason for doing so in the announcement. On the contrary, the future of the players is still to be decided.
Of course, this statement came out as a shocker for many as C9 was the finest group for HOTS in the world. Although, the group was struggling for steadiness after taking first prize in Blizzcon 2015. The inconsistency began to be prominent in January 2015 at Heroes Rising where the team came second behind Naventic.
The fortunes of Blizzcon HOTS 2015 champions got unpleasant as the spring leg of the circuit started. The group scarcely fit the bill for either regional this season, entering the competitions as eighth and seventh seeds. While they finished second at DreamHack Austin, their brief resurgence was snuffed out in Burbank at the ESL Summer Regional, as Gale Force Esports secured the one ticket to DreamHack Sweden.
In addition to this, C9 does not seem to be the only organization which is moving away from HOTS as many other best teams are doing the same. Team No Limit and EDG have also gone separate ways from HOTS.
The C9 HOTS division consisted of the following players:
Keiwan “k1pro” Itakura
Kun “iDream” Fang
John Paul “KingCaffeine” Lopez
Derek “DunkTrain” Arabian