The Rise of Team Liquid & the addition of Nivera

Rifat Bin Yusuf
By Rifat Bin Yusuf
7 Min Read
Image Via: Riot Games

Recently, Team Liquid’s VALORANT roster has been dominating the EMEA VALORANT scene.

The ScreaM and Nivera led squad performed a clean sweep over all major EMEA teams during the LCQ and Red Bull Homeground 2 in spectacular fashion. Today we’ll dive deep and find out the factors behind such improvements of Team Liquid.

Team Liquid Roster

The current Team Liquid Lineup consists of:

  • ScreaM
  • soulcas
  • L1NK
  • Jamppi
  • Nivera
  • Sliggy – Coach

Kryptix is also a part of the team, but he is inactive due to personal issues.

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TL foundation 

Team Liquid announced their VALORANT roster in the August of 2020. Initially, the roster consisted of Scream, L1NK, Soulcas, Kryptix & ec1s. All of there were in a team named “Fish123” prior to joining Team Liquid. Fish123 had seen moderate success in the European VALORANT scene; perhaps it caught the attention of TL officials. 

After induction, everyone was excited to see Scream’s performance in VALORANT since his legends are too heavy just to slip by. In their first few months, things were quite rough for TL VALORANT as they didn’t seem to find any stronghold. The European VALORANT scene was being dominated by the m1xwell led G2 Esports. In comparison, the TL roster often lagged behind FPX or NIP, let alone G2. 

Perhaps, falling to a rising Team Heretics was the most devastating moment for TL VALORANT’s history as nobody expected it. Team Heretics later went on to smash G2 as well in the same tournament, the FIrst Strike Europe.

TL Team Overhaul

After a series of mediocre performances, TL’s first overhaul took place in the February of this year. Team Liquid benched ec1s, and Jamppi was brought in as a replacement. The addition of another CSGO prodigy did actually uplift the team to a certain extent initially, but results were yet to be seen.  

By the time, the Liquid roster overcame their old foes and put up fights against Fnatic or G2. Slowly but surely, Jamppi started to feel more comfortable in the team, and his performance began to shine. Not just Jamppi, Soulcas & Kryptix also started to perform more consistently. Team Liquid was no more a one-dimensional powerhouse, and it became formidable & threatening.  

First Catch & Masters 2 Iceland 

Team Liquid’s first big hit was their win against Fnatic in EMEA Stage 2 Challengers Finals. Through that crucial win, they could secure a seat for the first-ever International VALORANT LAN event in the Iceland Masters 2. Such a feat gave Team Liquid all the confidence they ever needed. Although their results in the Masters 2 were not something to brag about, by then, TL sent everyone a clear message about their potentials. 

Failing to qualify for Masters 3 Berlin 

Even after showing insane performance throughout the entire qualification process, TL fell short of Gambit. A heartbreaking 2-1 loss against Gambit seriously impacted the team as they had to watch Berlin from the sidelines. 

LCQ & the Addtion of Nivera

Scream’s brother Nivera was brought in to fill Kryptix’s position as he had to go inactive due to some personal issues. The brother Duo worked out perfectly as they demolished every EMEA powerhouse during the Last Chance Qualifier for Champions at the end of the year. In his debut, Nivera aced the Pistol round against OBG, sending a strong message to the rest of the teams in the tourney. Later on, they have defeated Guild Esports & G2. 

Their flawless run in the LCQ granted them a spot for the VALORANT Champions event in December.  

TL’s Domination in the Red Bull Homeground #2  

After securing a seat in the Champions, Team Liquid’s performance is over the roof at this point. As the clear favorite of the tournament, Team Liquid has managed to beat Acend in the Grand Finals with a 3-1 scoreline, marking a successful end to the tournament. Masters 2 Berlin Champion Gambit Esports fell out of the tournament early after getting absolutely outclasses by Acend. Beating the same Acend on the same event actually holds a considerable significance for Team Liquid. 

Besides Acend, they have also defeated G2, TENSTAR & Fnatic in the Red Bull Homeground 2. With that said, it’s safe to say that Team Liquid will head onto Champions as the favorite from EMEA.  

Team Liquid Reincarnation

All the noticeable changes that took place inside Team Liquid happened to be well-thought-out decisions. Unlike some Organizations that often switch players based on highlight-worthy performance in 1 tournament, Team Liquid’s decision to switch players actually gave them results. Mainly because they were shooting for long-term objectives. Switching and dropping players frequently doesn’t actually produce the best outcome, specially in the VALORANT scene. 

Since the August of 2020, the core VALORANT roster of Team Liquid has been almost constant. Expect for the removal of ec1s, and the personal break from Kryptix; the other members, are still the same ones from 2020. Such consistency in the lineup brought stability in team chemistry and allowed them to improve together. 

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In this year alone, Team Liquid showed us some pretty unconventional ways of playing professional VALORANT. Starting from their zero Duelist setup, the team has experimented with extremely rare combinations of agents. Surprisingly, it also worked out against some high-tier teams. Coach Sliggy’s experiment often relied on the usage of utilities, rather than firepower.

Nevertheless, the road ahead looks promising for Team Liquid. VALORANT CHampions in Berlin will be a historic event for the future of VALORANT esports. A total of 16 teams from multiple regions will go head to head for the crown of the best VALORANT team of the year. Team Liquid’s run on the tournament should be an interesting one.

A competitive Sova main Valorant player who wants to write stuff and keep people engaged with gaming. I grew up with a parallel passion for writing and gaming.