Debate over VALORANT practice platform escalates into all-out trash talk between NRG and Sentinels coaches

A fresh rivalry is already heating up.

The partnered VALORANT teams competing in the top-tier international VCT leagues are still over a month away from facing each other at the LOCK//IN São Paulo event in February, but a simmering rivalry between two North American contenders is already brewing.

Late on Jan. 10, a conversation between NRG coach Chet Singh and Sentinels coach Don “SyykoNT” Muir started with a debate over which online platform they preferred to use for setting up practice and scrims, but descended into smack talk between the teams’ two tacticians.

The whole exchange, cataloged in a single Twitter thread, really heated up after the two coaches seemingly went after each other about being lazy, resulting in NRG’s in-game leader Pujan “FNS” Mehta stoking the fire by saying that he “wouldn’t take this kind of slander.”

NRG coach Chet asked the Sentinels coach if he needed to “bring a screenshot of our record vs your team again,” referencing OpTic’s four victories against XSET across five matches during VCT 2022 play (Chet coached OpTic while SyykoNT coached XSET last year). SyykoNT replied that he would be interested to see if that trend continues without “[Jaccob “yay” Whiteaker] and [Jimmy “Marved” Nguyen] to carry.”

That reply prompted Chet to post a screengrab of one of OpTic’s victories over XSET in which both yay and Marved had a quiet series (a 2-0 win for OpTic in the Masters Copenhagen playoffs).

The growing VALORANT scene has always relied on trash talk and banter to keep the audience engaged, but it can also provide motivation for the players (and apparently coaches) who are involved. With two stacked rosters on paper for both NRG and Sentinels, and added cause for each of the coaches to beat the other, a Sentinels vs. NRG rivalry could really light up the VCT Americas League this year.

And now, many fans are likely hoping to see a meeting between the two teams in São Paulo.

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