Three NBA teams were accepted into the newly-franchised North American League of Legends Championship Series league back in October. This week, the names for the incumbent NBA organisations have been revealed.
The three teams to have entered the NA LCS, and what they’re set to be called (per ESPN reports) are:
- Golden State Warriors — Golden Guardians
- Houston Rockets — Clutch City Gaming
- Cleveland Cavaliers — 100 Thieves
100 Thieves, the name adopted by the Cavaliers is an extension of the clothing brand that belongs to former Call of Duty and now famous YouTube star Matthew “Nadeshot” Haag who is heading up the Cavaliers’ esports.
Meanwhile, Houston Rockets brand Clutch City Gaming is based off the city’s nickname as Clutch City. The roots to the name are interesting and entrenched in Houston’s rich traditional sports history. Back in 1994 the city was dubbed “Choke City” after the Rockets threw away fourth-quarter leads in the Western Conference semifinals and, a year prior, the NFL team had managed to lose a 32-point lead in the playoffs. The team later mounted a huge comeback in the series to win in seven games and go on to win their first championship. The headline changed from “Choke City” to “Clutch City” and the nickname has stuck from there.
One would assume Joe Lacob and the Golden State Warriors’ name is fairly straight forward to explain. Given the name of the NBA franchise, it’s simply an alliterative title using the existing Golden brand.
Additionally, as revealed by Jacob Wolf at ESPN, the organisations that missed out on the franchising are entitled to a payout. The payout is based on a $12 million exit payment pool, comprised of the $3 million buy-ins paid by new teams entering the league. The payouts are calculated based on 3 shares per split for former Championship Series teams, and a 1 share per split for Challenger Series teams, capped at 10. The table below illustrates the payouts for each team:
|Gold Coin United||2||2||$571,429|
|Big Gods Jackals||2||2||$571,429|
Esports Insider says: Every naming decision in esports tends to come under scrutiny now, but the stories behind the Clutch City gives it our seal of approval – given that clutches in video games are fairly prevalent. We’re not too sold on the other two, though – although they’re not on Excelsior level by any means.