Just one week before the start of the NA LCS Summer Split, Team Liquid has suspended Joshua "Dardoch" Hartnett due to "insubordinate behavior," and is looking to transfer the jungler to another team.
According to Liquid’s press release, Dardoch has been suspended since May 18. The release includes a statement from Liquid head coach Yoonsup “Locodoco” Choi, who says that Dardoch’s “insubordinate behavior” was creating issues for the team’s dynamic.
“It may come as a surprise to our fans that we're starting the season this way,” Locodoco said in the release. “Yet as a coach, I believe that League of Legends is fundamentally a team game and a player who can't see eye to eye with that and can't put the team before oneself regardless of his skill will only stunt the team in the long run. We believe that 5 players under a single vision, putting everything we have to improve as a unit and working selflessly, is the best way to a healthy and a successful team environment.”
In a tweet posted after after the announcement, Dardoch stated that he is only suspended for two weeks. Dardoch also tweeted that while he saw himself as a problematic teammate, the issues were present in other teammates, and he was the only one punished.
The team is coordinating a possible transfer for Dardoch to move to another team, but according to Dardoch’s official statement, nothing has been confirmed.
“There's been team dynamic issues that have made it hard for me to stay level headed,” Dardoch said. “Big Steve and Loco have coordinated the possibility of a transfer, which I appreciate—the future is not yet figured out but I'm still motivated and eager to play as ever.”
Team Liquid’s owner Steve Arhancet said that the organization worked with Dardoch to solve the issues, and flew a sports psychologist to Korea to work with Dardoch during Liquid’s bootcamp, but could not find a solution.
Team Liquid currently has Galen “Moon” Holgate contracted to the organization as the jungler for Team Liquid Academy, the organization’s NA Challenger team. TL has yet to state who Dardoch’s replacement on the starting LCS roster will be.
During the Spring Split, Dardoch put up a 5.66 KDA across 17 games, and had a 4.65 KDA in his 11 games during the Spring Playoffs. Team Liquid ended the split in fourth place, and was eliminated 3-0 by Immortals in the Semifinals.
Daniel Rosen is a news editor for theScore esports. You can follow him on Twitter.