When we first heard about the formation of Origen, it was a very intriguing story. Enrique "xPeke" Cedeno was the face of Fnatic for a long time, so leaving to create his own Challenger team certainly seemed risky. He surrounded himself with talented veterans (sOAZ, Amazing) and players just waiting for their chance to shine (Niels, Mithy.) In the team's first LCS split, they managed to get all the way to the finals. While they eventually lost to Fnatic, they pushed the previously-undefeated team to a full five game set, something no one else had even come close to doing this summer.
That level of success meant that Origen will be repesenting Europe in the upcoming 2015 World Championships, truly a huge accomplishment for any team in their very first LCS split. With so much positivity surrounding the organization, it was a bit surprising when we learned earlier today that their head coach, Titus "LeDuck" Hafner has stepped down from his position. This means the team will need a new head coach to join them on stage for Worlds, which is no small matter. We've witnessed the impact a good (or poor) coach can have on a team, both in-game and out of it.
While he declined to go into great detail, Hafner did state that Origen's player-centric philosophies have prevented him from having the type of authority and influence he feels is necessary to be an effective head coach. With the organization's owner being a player himself, it's not entirely surprising that there are policies in place that are very "player focused/protective," as Hafner puts it. However, it ultimately did cause frustration for him as he felt he was being limited in his ability to do his job. For what it's worth, he stated that overall, he did enjoy his time with the team.
The decision of who will be Hafner's replacement is an important one for Origen, and one they'll unfortunately not have a great deal of time to make. One can only hope they can find a suitable replacement quickly, and return to the important task of preparing for Worlds.
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