The League of Legends World Championships is underway and will be running through November 6th with over $2.2 million in prize money at stake. There will be 22 teams battling for bragging rights and beaucoup dough in the host city of Reykjavík, Iceland. Before we go on, let us take a quick peek at LoL’s previous winners.
2011 – Fnatic
2012 – Taipei Assassins
2013 – SK Telecom (T1)
2014 – Samsung White
2015 – SK Telecom (T1)
2016 – SK Telecom (T1)
2017 – Samsung Galaxy
2018 – Invictus Gaming
2019 – FunPLus Phoenix
2020 – DAMWON Gaming
The League of Legends esports year culminates with the World Championship. Teams from local leagues all around the globe compete for a chance to make it to the top of the proverbial mountain, the LoL World Championships. It is like any other sport, really, as there is a regular season and then the playoffs. However, League of Legends doesn’t just have a few dozen teams competing, oh no, there are literally thousands, and it all comes down to this.
Unfortunately, there will be no live audience in direct attendance due to medical protocols put in place due to the global pandemic. However, if you want to tune in and watch remotely then you can see all the action on the Riot Games Twitch channel and the League of Legends esports YouTube channel. The event has gone so mainstream that even some of the best online sportsbooks, like Intertops, are dealing esports odds on this massive event.
The latest scores we have for you so far are coming out of Group A and Group B. Here are the standings and records at the time of this writing;
|2.Hanwha Life Esports||3-1|
|1. DetonatioN FocusMe||4-1|
|3. Galatasaray Esports||2-2|
|4. Beyond Gaming||2-3|
|5. Unicorns of Love||1-4|
Play-In Round 1 – October 5th – 7th
Play-In Round 2 – October 8th – 9th
Group Stage – October 11th – 13th & 15th – 18th
Playoffs – October 22nd – 25th, October 30th – 31st & November 6th
Beyond Gaming’s Maoan Suspended
Shockwaves were sent across the League of Legends World Championship on Friday as it was revealed Beyond Gaming mid-laner, Chien “Maoan” Mao-An, was suspended due to evidence of a fixed game.
LoLesports tweeted the following, “During the 2021 World Championship, Maoan violated Rule 9.3 of the 2021 World Championship Ruleset, which prohibits association with gambling. Competitive integrity is the foundation for our sport and we take all violations of our ruleset extremely seriously. The Competitive Operations team obtained definitive evidence showing Maoan provided inside information to a friend for the purposes of wagering on today’s match. Maoan will be suspended for the remained of the 2021 World Championship, and may be subject to additional penalties following a full investigation.” – Director of Operations at LoL Esports, Tom Martell
Spelling mistakes and typos aside, it is clear that there will be little sympathy for Maoan as the accusation of him leaking draft strategies to friends for betting purposes is as serious as a heart attack when it comes to traditional sports, as well as esports. BYG’s owner, Xue “DinTer” Hong-Wei, released this statement on his personal Facebook page as translated by PCS broadcaster and host Jenny “Reirachu” Lee:
“…hopes the org can find a balance between punishing Maoan and not screwing over the other team players.” The BYG owner also expressed that he “hopes Maoan will be allowed to play tomorrow.”
Reirachu also stated that she has heard whispers that there may be other Beyond Gaming players embroiled in the scandal. She tweeted, “there’s also a rumour that more than one person on the team was involved with leaking picks and that the staff confiscated everyone’s phones to find out really heartbreaking if true especially after that bo5”
This is not the first match-fixing scandal and it probably won’t be the last. A whopping 38 players in China’s League of Legends Professional League and League of Legends Developmental League were investigated and found guilty of violations and mischief. In addition to the suspensions, a dozen lifetime bans were issued.
We also saw FunPlus PhoeniX’s jungler Zhou “Bo” Yang-bo come clean to officials that he had been asked, and subsequently agreed, to fix matches. Both the player and his team agreed to cooperate completely with the ongoing investigation. And it was 18 months ago that Rogue Warriors terminated the contract of jungler Wang “WeiYan” Xiang because of allegations of match-fixing.
League of Legends Pro League team issued a press release at the time that said, in part, “Even after a year of repeated reminders and warnings, some still chose to ignore the rules which led to severe consequences. We hereby once again remind our players to remind themselves not to violate club and league rules. We will also further conduct deep internal probes and we are vowing to root out anyone that has directly or indirectly participated in violations.”
It seems they still have plenty of work to do in that regard. Stay tuned LoL fans, there will be more on this – you can count on it!