Is this North's final stand?
Danish esports org North has officially closed their doors after failing to find investors for their following competitive season. What was once a powerhouse team on their way to the top, is now a brand without funding. North was mostly known for their Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) division which won multiple events over the past couple of years.
They began falling off around 2019 due to an alleged staffing issue which led to their final year of competing. The Danish operation was supposed to be the final opponent of fan favourites Astralis - a team that has the most Major titles and earnings in the history of CS:GO. The starry-eyed players on North eventually realised how cutthroat the industry was and knew how tough their competition was too.
AIZY ALONGSIDE NORTH
Philip "aizy" Aistrup was with North for three years meaning he would’ve seen the rise and fall of his very own team. The Danish rifler played with some of the greatest teams in the world before joining North including G2 Esports and FaZe Clan. Aizy was a well-respected figure on North, and it was often reflected within his contract.
After leaving Team Dignitas, aizy’s monthly salary tripled, and eventually capped out at ten thousand dollars. North always had the right amount of money but often lacked a proper staff to take care of their finances.
In a period of three years, they earned roughly 1.2 million dollars and attended over a whopping seventy events. Their run in the competitive scene will live on for years, knowing how hard they tried to become the best team in all of Europe.
During 2017, North had an explosive debut like no other team has ever seen before. They attended two different Majors but had very little success in the end. Their first-place finish at the DreamHack Open in Montreal saved the team from a financial crisis earning them legendary status.
North earned almost five hundred grand in their first year of competing and even came out with a DreamHack trophy. The next year they faced a dip in earnings but earned another DreamHack title, except this time it was against Astralis in Stockholm. They went into game three against their main rivals before getting destroyed for the rest of the year.
While fans began warming up to the Danish prodigies, North began to face a steep decline in achievements. In 2019, North failed to keep up with the S-Tier scene, but they were loyal to their players. North won their third DreamHack title that year, but it simply wasn’t enough to keep up the company's financial demands.
A CHANGE IN PLAYERS
After both Casper "cadiaN" Moller and Rene "cajunb" Borg left for different teams, North was at a loss. They acquired Jakob "JUGi" Hansen as a permanent replacement but eventually fell short to their competition.
With events moving to online platforms, North was given one last chance to compete. Their head investors didn’t have to worry about travelling fees which led to the team’s final year of financial backing.
MAGISK AND HIS RUN WITH NORTH
Now for the history of talents within North that didn’t receive the right amount of attention. Emil "Magisk" Reif spent seven months with North back in 2017. Not only is Magisk one of the best players in CS:GO, but he also had a chance to make North the best team in Europe. North benched Magisk after the PGL Major in Krakow which caused a lot of confusion in the competitive scene.
Back in the day, it was between Magisk and aizy when it came to filling the bench. At the time, Magisk was a team carry which led to his departure from the team. He thrived in the competitive scene but was often held back by his team. After learning about getting benched, Magisk left for OpTic Gaming before finding his spot on Astralis.
During the time of Magisk’s departure, Kristian "k0nfig" Wienecke was in the midst of leaving North without even knowing about it. Even though his event ratings dropped at the time, k0nfig still showed raw talent within his team. In February of 2018, k0nfig made a post on Twitter after hearing about his departure from a news source rather than his very own team.
It was a shock for both k0nfig and the fans of North at the time. He eventually went on to play alongside Magisk with OpTic Gaming which led to his current position on Complexity Gaming.
Both of these players went on to do great things within competitive CS:GO after losing multiple events with their original team. North always knew who to sign people but often failed when it came to managing their players.
Season after season, North failed to bring their roster together when it came to participating at Major events. North had all of the right tools to form a dominant team, but they were in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Images via North | Twitter