Updated on January 16th, 2021 at 8:48 PM EST.
Three members of Moon Raccoons have left the top unsigned team. Nolan “Temperature” Pepper, Zander “FIEND” Bates, and Aleksandar “ALEKSANDAR” Hinojosa all announced their departures via individual tweets, later being confirmed by Moon Raccoons’ official account.
Moon Raccoons burst onto the scene at the Renegades x NSG VALORANT Invitational, claiming fourth place with a roster of Temperature, FIEND, ALEKSANDAR, Christopher “Rebo” Heindel, and Shawn “Shawn” O’Riley. Shortly after, Shawn joined Gen.G Esports, to be replaced with Magno “Pr0phie” Ramos. While they never again quite matched the highs of their breakout run, they took second in the Nerd Street Gamers – Monthly October, played one of the most memorable matches of the First Strike qualifiers against 100 Thieves, and qualified for the First Strike North America – UMG Closed Qualifier. However, lately, results for Moon Raccoons have been trending steeply downwards, with the team failing to make it out of the group stages in both Pittsburgh Knights Before Christmas and the ongoing Nerd Street Gamers – Winter Championship.
FIEND has long functioned as the Jett/Operator for the team, ALEKSANDAR as the primary entry fragger and duelist, and Temperature as the Omen player. Common sense would suggest that part of their reason for leaving was the lack of offers from organizations – despite Pittsburgh Knights, eUnited, and Ghost Gaming all entering VALORANT after Moon Raccoons established themselves, none would pick the team up. Temperature, FIEND, and ALEKSANDAR are now all free agents.
It does not seem that Moon Raccoons are completely finished – Rebo hinted towards the brand staying around on his twitter, and Moon Raccoons, in their announcement of the players’ departure, did not say the team was entirely disbanding. It seems Rebo and current trial Ryan “ryann” Welsh may still have something up their sleeves.
Moon Raccoons are now:
Christopher “Rebo” Heindel
Ryan “ryann” Welsh (Trial)
Gannon “RaptorZ” Nelson (Coach)
Update: Rebo released his statement on the situation, stating that he is also testing the waters and is open for offers but is also willing and ready to rebuild Moon Raccoons should nothing work out.