DRX completed a Worlds run that cemented itself as the greatest underdog story in League of Legends. Now, a short time after their win, the entire roster is up for grabs.
While they certainly weren’t favored to win Worlds 2022 going in, DRX showed that they had what it takes to be a roster that could take on the world. Even if they didn’t have the best showing in the LCK.
They gradually gained momentum through the event. They were coming off of a rough showing in 2022 and an even rougher time in 2021, with jungler Hong ‘Pyosik’ Chang-hyeon calling 2021 the “hardest time I’d ever encountered in my life” in his interview with Dexerto.
Now, a short time after their Cinderella story, the entire DRX roster is up for free agency. While this doesn’t mean that we won’t see any of these players on the team next year, there’s a high likelihood that we see some changes.
Free agency is a valuable tool for players. It can be used to negotiate higher salaries at an existing organization, or to command much higher pay within another org if they’re willing to put forward a premium to get the best players.
Faker looking through offers from the LCS is a great example of using contract expiry to look for new opportunities, and more prestige in an existing org if the player chooses to stick around.
But, unlike with Faker who is very likely to stick with T1, things aren’t so cut and dry with all 5 of these newly-crowned World Champion players up for grabs.
DRX announces the contracts with Hwang 'Kingen' Sung-hoon, Hong 'Pyosik' Chang-hyun, Kim 'Zeka' Geon-woo, Kim 'Deft' Hyeok-gyu, Jo 'BeryL' Geon-hee have been expired.DRX sincerely appreciates the five players being on the team’s most brilliant journey. pic.twitter.com/smWslgfRYO— Worlds 2022 Champions DRX (@DRXGlobal) November 22, 2022
It isn’t just DRX’s roster that’s in free agency, either. The entire coaching staff has also been put into free agency, and could be moving on to other teams.
DRX announces the contracts with Kim 'Ssong' Sang-su, Lee 'Mowgli' Jae-ha, Shin 'Shine' Dong-wook have been expired.DRX will remember their hard work which led the team to the top. DRX sincerely appreciates their contribution and wishes them all the best in their future.#DRX pic.twitter.com/gqgtyCfdHu— Worlds 2022 Champions DRX (@DRXGlobal) November 22, 2022
Nothing is set in stone yet for these players with any organization, but, with so many people up for grabs and in negotiations with other teams, there’s a high chance we see at least one piece of the Worlds-winning roster flying another team’s banner in 2023. Whether its in the LCK or elsewhere.