Seven-year European veteran, Henrik “Froggen” Hansen, will be returning to pro play this upcoming year. He will be joining Golden Guardians for 2019 as their starting mid laner.
This news comes less than a week after the team would announce the additions of top laner Kevin “Hauntzer” Yarnell and support Kim “Olleh” Joo-sung. Additionally, both Samson “Lourlo” Jackson and Matthew “Matt” Elento would leave the team. Lourlo is now the starting top laner for Echo Fox, while Matt is playing for Team Liquid Academy. This means that Golden Guardians will be starting an almost-entirely new roster for 2019.
Froggen has one of the longest careers of any LCS players right now. Also, he would play on a plethora of top-tier teams in Europe and North America. He would play with CLG Europe, Evil Geniuses, and finally, Alliance/Elements, before leaving Europe for the NA LCS. Froggen would join Echo Fox in 2016 and remain on the team until the end of 2017. Unfortunately, he wouldn’t find much success with that roster. There wasn’t much talent on the roster, and he would be forced to carry many of their games.
The talented mid laner would end up taking a hiatus from pro play for around five months, before joining Origen back in Europe. He would play for the team in the 2018 European Masters, where they would win the championship with relative ease. However, the organization would release the whole team after the tournament. Luckily, their success might have helped push his decision to enter the LCS once more.
However, there are still some questions surrounding his return and the roster around him. It has been some time since Froggen has played in the LCS, and it may take some time to adjust to the life of a pro player. Will he be leading the team like he has in the past, or will he sit back and let someone else take the reins?
The roster now consists of Froggen, Hauntzer, Olleh, Juan “Contractz” Arturo Garcia, and Matthew “Deftly” Chen. The top side of the map looks pretty strong for this lineup, with the experienced, talented trio of Hauntzer, Froggen and Contractz. However, the bottom side of the map is not providing anyone with much hope. Deftly was one of the worst ADC’s in the region, and Olleh was one of the bigger weaknesses on Team Liquid. It will be interesting to see how these two players will adjust with completely new teammates.
The same argument goes for Hauntzer, who has been on TSM since 2015. Playing with someone other than Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg will be a challenge in itself, as he is quite the polarizing player. Of course, Froggen will also need to adjust to pro life relatively quickly. Streaming life is much more relaxed and stress-free when comparing to competitive play. However, every player also has something to prove, and will be playing with a chip on their shoulder.
Hauntzer and Olleh will want to prove that they can play without their respective carries. Contractz and Deftly will want to rebound and improve from his off-year in 2018. Froggen will want to show the world that he hasn’t lost his step, and is still one of the best mid laners in the West.
What are your thoughts on Froggen joining Golden Guardians? Let us know what you think in the comments below! If you want more NA LCS coverage, check us out here!
Born and raised in Toronto. Sometimes a writer. Sometimes a creative director. Sometimes bored. Catch me with hundreds of unplayed games in my Steam library.