South Korean League of Legends (LoL) pro, Lee “Crown” Min-ho, who won the 2017 World Championship as the midlaner for Samsung Galaxy, has announced his retirement from professional play.
Crown shared his decision to retire in a post on his personal Instagram account, explaining in Korean that continuing to pursue a professional career has only made him stressful.
“I gradually became less interested in the game and only had stress, dreaming of dreams that could not be achieved realistically,” the 25-year-old wrote on Instagram.
Crown started his career in esports as a StarCraft pro, but eventually shifted to playing LoL professionally in 2014 and moving to Brazil. After four months away from South Korea, he returned to his home country and joined Team Hyper to begin his career in earnest.
He joined Samsung Galaxy in January 2015, helping the team become one of the strongest teams in the LoL Champions Korea (LCK) during his tenure. Crown and Samsung Galaxy finished second in Worlds 2016, falling to SK Telecom T1, before getting their revenge the next year and winning Worlds 2017.
Crown and the rest of the Samsung Galaxy roster was acquired by KSV Esports in November 2017, which was then renamed to Gen.G Esports in May of the next year. However, Crown only stayed with the team for six more months before moving to North America and joining OpTic Gaming in free agency.
Crown’s stint in North America was far from successful, as he was relegated to OpTic’s Academy team after 10 months with the main squad. In October 2019, he was moved to Immortals but only stayed for a month there before being transferred to Counter Logic Gaming (CLG). Crown stayed with CLG for three months before moving back to Korea in March of this year.
In his return to his home country, Crown joined OZ Gaming, a team that competes in the Korean Challenger league that is a tier below the LCK in terms of level of competition. Crown had middling results in his eight months with OZ before eventually announcing his retirement.
Crown is now the third high-profile LoL pro to announce his retirement this year, joining North American stars Søren “Bjergsen” Bjerg and Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng, who hung up their mice last month.
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