FURIA Add honda to Starting Lineup
Lucas “honda” Cano will return to FURIA’s starting Counter-Strike: Global Offensive roster, as announced by the Brazillian esports organization on Thursday, May 3. The 20-year-old will replace Paytyn “junior” Johnson.
Honda is back
Honda will return to FURIA’s starting roster as the team’s new AWPer. He’ll replace junior, who has been with the team since January 2021.
The 20-year-old Brazillian AWPer began his esports career in June 2020, when he joined DETONA Pound, where he stayed until December when the team disbanded. Honda later joined the FURIA Academy team and got promoted to the main roster on January 14.
He has since played only six matches with the team as a replacement for junior at BLAST Premier Global Final and cs_summit 7. During that stretch, honda averaged a 0.84 rating, helping his side finish inside the top-eight in both tournaments.
Although honda failed to impress with his overall showings, he has played a crucial role in FURIA’s 2-1 victory over Cloud9 in the cs_summit 7 Group C decider match. He posted a 1.05 rating in that match and showcased his prowess by winning crucial rounds, securing secured FURIA a spot in the playoffs.
After cs_summit, FURIA opted to continue with junior instead of honda, who has since returned to the bench. Honda has not played a single official match for the past four months.
FURIA have been struggling to make much noise in the upper echelons of the CS:GO competitive scene. Although the Brazilians are still ranked world no.7, their showings throughout 2021 were anything but inspiring.
After their fifth-eighth-place finish at the cs_summit 7, FURIA attended Intel Extreme Masters XV – World Championship, but without much success.
FURIA picked up some slack in April when they made it to the semi-finals at ESL Pro League Season 13 but quickly returned to their old ways. FURIA took a shot at BLAST Premier: Spring Showdown 2021 but crashed out of Round of 8 with a 1-2 loss to Gambit Esports.
Later that month, FURIA appeared in Intel Extreme Masters Season XVI – Summer: European Qualifier, where they once more left a lot to be desired. They lost their opening match against Movistar Riders (0-2) and suffered a swift elimination from the lower bracket with a 0-2 loss to FaZe Clan.
FURIA have since made it to the semi-finals of an A-Tier tournament Spring Sweet Spring #1, where they lost to the world no.16 team forZe. Things didn’t get much better in May when FURIA finished DreamHack Masters Spring 2021 in fifth-sixth.
During that stretch, junior failed to live up to the expectations and was one of the main reasons why FURIA were struggling as much as they have.
Junior Not As Good As Expected
During his stint with FURIA, junior averaged a poor 0.92 rating as the team’s main AWPer. That was a massive decline from his time on Triumph, where he made a name for himself as a rising esports star, averaging a 1.14 rating across nine months.
“Junior’s performance wasn’t the one we expected, not by us and not by himself,” said FURIA’s head coach Nicholas “guerri” Nogueira.
“That’s due to several reasons. He asked me to go back home, because he was a little tired, feeling pressured. It’s tough for an American, young boy, who speaks English in the middle of some people who only speak Portuguese on a daily basis, out of game.”
As the only English-speaking member of the team, junior hasn’t enjoyed his stay at FURIA. As noted by guerri, the team made an effort to speak English, but the communication wasn’t as smooth as it would have been with all five members speaking their native tongue.
The team won’t have to deal with similar communication issues with honda on the team since he is also a Brazillian esports pro.
Honda’s official debut slated for Intel Extreme Masters XVI – Cologne
Honda will make his debut as a permanent member of FURIA at Intel Extreme Masters XVI – Cologne, slated to kick off on Tuesday, July 6. The tournament will feature 24 teams, who will travel to Cologne, Germany, where they’ll compete for the prestigious title and the lion’s share of the $1,000,000 prize pool.
The esports bookmakers have yet to release betting odds for the upcoming tournament. However, with so many high-profile teams in attendance, FURIA likely won’t be one of the top betting favorites to lift the trophy in Cologne.