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Smooya Enters Free Agency

After spending just over a week on the bench, Owen "smooya" Butterfield has officially parted ways with Fnatic on Thursday, March 3.

After spending just over a week on the bench, Owen “smooya” Butterfield has officially parted ways with Fnatic on Thursday, March 3. The 22-year-old is now free to explore his options in the market and re-launch his Counter-Strike: Global Offensive career elsewhere.

Smooya Leaves Fnatic

Smooya has announced that he is no longer a member of Fnatic CS:GO team on Thursday, who released him from his contract, allowing smooya to enter free agency. With that, the British AWPer is free to explore his options and join any team that is willing to pick him up.

It is currently unknown which team smooya will join and whether he has received any offers. However, as he did recently, he is likely to continue competing with various stacks or as a stand-in pšlayer of Tier-2 teams.

Shortly after he got benched from Fnatic, smooya was seen taking part in the first and second open qualifiers for the PGL Major Antwerp 2022 Europe RMR. He competed with other European players at Benched Heroes but couldn’t find much success.

In the first open qualifiers, Benched Heroes placed ninth-16th after losing to Dignitas. In their second attempt, smooya and co. crashed out in 17th-32nd, when they lost against Bad News Eagles, who would go on to successfully qualify for the next stage.

Smooya also served as a stand-in for Into The Breach, with who he attended ESEA Cash Cup: Europe – Winter 2021 #5 at the end of February and placed seventh-10th. Earlier this week, smooya again appeared as a stand-in for Into the Breach at Pinnacle Winter Series 3 Regionals.

After a short stint with the Benched Heroes stack and a stand-in spell with Into The Breach, smooya is now free to sign a contract with any esports organization. Unfortunately, so far, there is no information about which team smooya might end up in.

Things With Fnatic Did Not Work Out

Smooya joined Fnatic in October on a trial basis, following the departure of Jack “Jackinho” Ström Mattsson and impressed early on. The Brit helped Fnatic win three qualifying tournaments, including the open and closed IEM Masters Winter and DreamHack Open.

With smooya on the roster, Fnatic then claimed two titles at REPUBLEAGUE TIPOS Season 2 and DreamHack Open November 2021 and ended the year with a top-eigh finish at IEM Winter.

Over the first few weeks with Fnatic, smooya displayed exceptional consistency, averaging a 1.21 rating by the end of 2021. Unfortunately, things turned sour in 2022, when his rating dropped to 1.01.

Along with smooya’s rating also fell Fnatic’s showings, as the teams struggled to make much noise. The black-and-orange kicked off the year with a seventh-eight place finish at Funspark ULTI 2021 and fifth-eighth at Pinnacle Winter Series #1.

Most notably, Fnatic underperformed at IEM Katowice, where they couldn’t reach the playoffs. Although the team got off to a strong start, beating G2 Esports in the first round of the group stage, they couldn’t find the same success in the next few rounds.

Following their victory against G2, Fnatic fell against the eventual champions FaZe Clan and got eliminated from the tournament by Astralis. Fnatic ended up placing ninth-12th, which was far below the expectations.

Smooya ended IEM Katowice with a 1.04 rating, largely thanks to his strong showing against Astralis. However, he otherwise struggled to maintain a positive rating across the three IEM Katowice fixtures.

Following Fnatic’s disappointing showing in Poland, the team decided to make roster changes and benched smooya, who was supposedly already told he won’t remain with the team during the tournament. Fnatic have since replaced smooya with an academy player, Iulian “regali” Harjău, who was called up from fnatic Rising