Panda Global was one of several organizations whose players were tied to every iteration of Super Smash Bros. But today the team split from two of their players, Melee player Zain Naghmi and Ultimate player Brian “Cosmos” Kalu.
This comes at an extremely strange time for Zain, who is ranked the sixth best melee player in the world. The Cosmos news isn’t much of a surprise, however, as its major placements have been trending south since the beginning of season two of Ultimate.
PG also got out of Starcraft 2 by dropping Diego “Kelazhur” Schwimer. In a video, CEO Alan Bunney shared a brief history of each player’s time with PG and wished them all the best.
“Saying goodbye to players is always bittersweet for us here at PG,” said Bunney. “While we are sad to see them leave, we are also really proud of what they have achieved and who they have become while they were with us. We know all three guys are going to do great things and we wish them all the best. “
Just had amazing experiences with Panda Global. Fantastic team with fantastic people and I wish them all the best
With this in mind, I am now a free agent and can hardly wait to see what’s coming up in 2020 https://t.co/6tTWcNkohD
– Zain (@ZainNaghmi) November 8, 2019
According to SmashBrosInsider, an account that correctly predicted dozens of moves within the smash scene over the past year, reported in October that “growing frustrations between Cosmos and Panda Global” would lead to its release before December.
One of Cosmos’ roommates, commentator Richard “Keitaro” King, initially responded to the report by saying PG has “no plans to drop Cosmos.” After today’s announcement, he reacted again.
I am now a free agent again!
I broke up with Panda Global, but I had a wonderful time with them!
I wish you and everyone in the team all the best for the future and I am eternally grateful for everything you have done for me💜
Hoping for bright future opportunities!
– Kosmos # 2B4Smash (@CosmosZR) November 8, 2019
“The term ‘lost’ means that the team no longer wanted the player and was fired,” said Keitaro. “Kosmos was not dropped. He left because he wanted to. The reasons why I am not discussing. That’s all.”
PG only has Justin “Plup” McGrath in Melee, while the Smash Ultimate roster now consists of Marss and Eric “ESAM” Lew. There’s also a good chance that both Zain and Cosmos will be signed in the near future, given their high profile play and results, making them first targets in a thin free agent market.