CAZ and team part ways
The players of CAZ eSports have parted ways with the organisation. Shortly afterwards, CAZ signed The Working Men, a mostly UK-based lineup.
CAZ eSports' late roster formed in March of 2016 and included the likes of Ben "r0m" Smith, previously of fm-eSports, and Donovan "zNf" Froid, who used to play for Enemy and Leader-1 when he lived in the United States.
They were seen competing in the likes of the RGN Pro Series II European Closed Qualifiers, where they went 0-2 in their group, and the DreamHack Summer Pantamera BYOC qualifier.
The organisation released an announcement this evening that they had parted ways with the team, citing the desire to work with a team "that has the drive to win." A statement from the organisation's COO, Ben Bagg, reads as follows:
"After a long discussion with the management team we have decided to drop this roster, the team's performance at DreamHack was fantastic and I would like to thank them for their effort, but overall the team was not performing overall how we would have liked and the results were just not consistent enough.
"We had a rocky event at DreamHack however we are happy with the way it all turned out, thanks mainly to the team and their dedication. However we are going to be moving away from them now as we set our sights back to the UK for sometime. We as an organisation are keen to help develop UK talent, which is something we are pushing with our Academies, and by returning our focus to the UK we hope to help grow the scene itself!"
However, the CAZ players themselves have also taken to Twitter to post about the situation, and they have insinuated that a series of arguments over salary and payment for DreamHack Summer expenses led to the split.
In team captain r0m's words:
"I believe CAZ made a big mistake in picking my team up initially, unfortunately for us I believe they realised the same thing very shortly after. Throughout the duration of CAZ, as team captain I felt it was my job to make sure my team were in good hands. I don't blame CAZ for any decisions they have made and I completely understand, but the lack of empathy towards the team has been disgraceful.
"To put yourself in my shoes and how I felt, imagine taking a job that required time for you to be where you wanted to be at in terms of ability.Upon the interview the company completed agreed with you and took you on as a future investment. Then from day 1 of the job, you start being told you aren't what they want and do everything within the law to force you out the door. That's the impression I got from day one. Sending us to an event with multiple promises, and letting us down, leaving us stranded and out of pocket significantly (paying for things that were agreed to be paid for by CAZ) being told to shut the f*** up by the owner of the team when I intervened to find out when they were giving us money to pay for things was one of the most disrespectful things I think has ever been said to me.
"In another country, and financially relying on a person that is telling you to "shut the f*** up" leaves you in a very bad position. In hindsight, I've learnt a lot from this... I will never accept a verbal agreement on anything again. I believe CAZ will learn from their mistakes and improve dramatically. But I feel for whoever they pick up next if they aren't to have changed their approach to everything."
CAZ eSports' lineup was:
In another development, CAZ eSports have turned their attention to signing The Working Men, a mainly UK lineup who recently won the ESL UK Premiership Spring 2016 Finals, in the same day.
25-year-old Jake "jakem" McCausland, who will be returning to playing for the CAZ organisation, had the following to say,
"After the demise of my previously successful CAZ team due to dephh's international departure I had decided to take a step back from creating a team and decided that with the talent in the UK at the time there wasn't much scope to create a solid lineup. The Working Men was created initially as a mix team and somewhere I could play with multiple different people who I had not played with before across different leagues . I am happy to announce that we have found a core line-up that we are happy with and we look forward to the upcoming iSeries and hopefully UKMASTERS. More importantly it is great to be representing CAZ again and the team looks to pick up where we left off before. Thanks to Ben & Liam for the opportunity again," McCausland said.
The new CAZ eSports lineup is:
stich writes for HLTV.org and can be found on Twitter