PapaSmithy Leaves 100 Thieves After Three Seasons

Chris “PapaSmithy” Smith announced on Monday, October 17, that he is stepping down from his position as general manager of 100 Thieves.

With that, he ended a highly successful three-year-long stint with the League of Legends team, which he helped win its first domestic title in 2021.

Three Successful Seasons

PapaSmithy officially left 100 Thieves on Monday after spending three years with the organization. The 35-year-old joined the North American League of Legends team in September 2019, having previously served as a color commentator for the English cast of the LoL Champions Korea.

Since joining the LoL Championship Series (LCS) squad, PapaSmithy helped rebuild 100 Thieves into one of North America’s top LoL teams.

And even though 100T failed to achieve much internationally, the Los Angeles-based esports organization achieved plenty domestically.

Most notably, under PapaSmithy, 100 Thieves won the LCS 2021 Championship and have since retained the tag of one of the top LCS teams. 100T have since failed to add another domestic title, but they reached the playoffs of both the LCS 2022 Spring Playoffs and the LCS 2022 Championship, losing the finals against Evil Geniuses and Cloud9, respectively.

Besides leading 100T to their first LCS title, PapaSmithy also helped the team reach the LoL World Championship 2021 for the first time since 2018. As one of the best-performing teams at the tournament, 100 Thieves nearly reached the playoffs but came one win short in a group with former champions T1 and the eventual world champions, EDward Gaming.

After reaching their first LoL Worlds in four years, 100T did it again this season but couldn’t show up and crashed out of the group stage with a 1-5 record. But despite the team’s disappointing performance in LoL Worlds 2022, this was not the main reason for PapaSmithy’s departure.

Different Plans

As explained by PapaSmithy, he decided to leave 100 Thieves because he had a different vision of building the League of Legends program. Moreover, he explained that he had made the decision before the LoL Worlds but decided to stick with the organization until the end of the tournament.

“After multiple rounds of talks with management before Worlds, it was clear that the shared vision of the kind of League of Legends program we wanted to build together in 2019 no longer fit the goals and aspirations of 100T in 2023. Ultimately, this meant supporting our LCS team through Worlds and then going our separate ways,” said PapaSmithy.

“It has been an amazing journey over the past three years with 100 Thieves – After living and breathing League of Legends on the broadcast side for six years, I wanted an opportunity to start a program from scratch and get to truly experience what it meant to compete at the highest level. As a caster, you narrate wins and losses, you show respect to competitors and elevate their achievements as best you can, but the rush of designing the processes, hiring the staff and players, setting the team culture, and seeing it all unfold week to week is something impossible to distill into word,” he added.

It remains to be seen what PapaSmithy’s plans for the future are, whether he will look to join another organization as a general manager or return to the broadcast as a commentator. However, he has noted that he is nowhere near done and already on the lookout for a new project.

What’s Next For 100T?

Just like PapaSmithy’s future remains uncertain, it is also unclear what the future of 100 Thieves’ League of Legends roster is heading into the offseason. After a fairly successful season, which culminated with an early exit from the LoL Worlds, 100 Thieves will likely want to make some roster changes ahead of the 2023 season.

However, with Ssumday as the only player whose contract will run out this offseason, it’s hard to say which path the organization will take. But it seems unlikely for 100T to pick the same plan as last year and keep its entire roster intact for another season.