The top two League of Legends teams were disqualified at the MLG Summer Championship for collusion. Team Curse NA and Team Dignitas had already secured the top spots going in to the grand final but instead of choosing to play out the games in a standard manner they made two very bad decisions.
The two teams first raised eyebrows when they chose to play in the unconventional format of All Random, All Middle, to “entertain fans” rather than play in a traditional format that is normally seen in tournament play. What made matters worse was that the teams allegedly agreed to split the prize money of $32,000 regardless of who won the match.
According to Major League Gaming, this clearly violated MLG’s Official Pro Circuit Conduct Rules which state, “competitors may not intentionally Forfeit a Game or conspire to manipulate Rankings or Brackets.” Riot Games, developer of League of Legends, agreed with MLG’s ruling and as a result, MLG disqualified both teams, denied them all of their prize money, and announced that both teams will not be receiving any Circuit Points towards the North American Regionals.
“Both teams have agreed that the disqualification was warranted. While there is some contention over the exact nature of the actions taken by Curse NA and Dignitas which led to the disqualification, both teams, as well as MLG and Riot, agree that any collusion, or anything involving not playing a tournament match to win, warrants disqualification,” said MLG.
Following MLG’s announcement, members of both teams quickly issued apology statements to MLG, Riot, and the fans. You can check out Team Curse’s statement below.
Before anyone tries to defend either team, consider what would happen if MLG allowed this kind of behavior. At the end of the day, the whole point of the tournament is to determine who is the best player or group of players in the world. If they allowed this once, they’d have to allow it for everyone which would completely ruin the tournament. MLG is trying to legitimize eSports, and just like in real sports, there can only be one champion so why should it be any different here?