League of Legends will see its most important transatlantic trade in recent memory as Luka “Perkz” Perković officially signs with Cloud9. The announcement of Perkz deal with Cloud9 came just hours after his former team, G2 Esports, revealed the signing of Martin “Rekkles” Larsson. The signing, revealed across social media on November 20, fills in some of the final pieces of the LoL free agency period.
We’ve known since early November that Perkz would likely make the move from the LEC to the LCS. However, only now has the move been confirmed. With a reported five million dollar buy-out clause and a multi-million dollar contract on the line, exactly where the star mid and bot laner would land was up for debate. Taking over the mid role in C9 was one of the most likely destinations.
Three days ago, G2 Esports bid farewell to Perkz in an emotional series of posts on their website. Since debuting on the team as a rookie, the player developed alongside G2 Esports to become one of the very best in the world. His move to NA could fundamentally shift the balance between the regions.
And that’s just what Perkz wants to do. In a reply to the announcement of his signing, the freshly minted NA import proudly stated that this would be the “first year that NA is better than EU.”
Still, despite the confidence shown by C9’s newest player, questions remain as to whether the Croatian player will be able to adapt to the NA lifestyle. North America’s solo-queue comes under frequent criticism for its bad attitude, and numerous cases exist of players moving regions to NA, only to flounder in their new region. Notable examples include the legendary Henrik “Froggen” Hansen, Alexey “Alex Ich” Ichetovkin, and Dennis “Svenskeren” Johnsen.
However, if Perkz can avoid the fall off in ability and motivation which has struck almost every import to NA, C9 seem poised to dominate the region. Their 2021 roster is one of their strongest of recent years, and with the signing of Perkz to Cloud 9, they’re ready to make a push to more international competition – something they missed out on in 2020.