LCS to return following major agreement between Riot Games, LCSPA and teams

lcs riot games returns june 14
Image credit: Riot Games

The delayed 2023 LCS Summer Split is set to return on June 14th following an agreement between Riot Games, the LCSPA and teams.

The 2023 LCS Summer Split was postponed for two weeks following the league’s players association, the LCSPA, voting in favour of a player walkout.

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Players decided to walk out after Riot Games’ decision to modify the NACL mandate, granting LCS organisations the choice to withdraw from the formerly obligatory North American tier-two competition — which seven out of ten did.

Discussions between the developer, the LCSPA and a team representative have resulted in a deal to resume the league, Riot Games and the LCSPA have confirmed.

Included in the new agreement is a new NACL business model, which supplements the initial commitment of $300,000 (⁓£240,000) with a revenue-sharing system between the tournament operator and participating teams. The LCSPA said 50% of all NACL sponsorship revenue will now be shared with teams. Riot Games said in its announcement that this would “drive towards long-term sustainability.”

The agreement will also introduce several new assurances for players. Those earning up to 1.5 times the league’s minimum salary will now be guaranteed 30-days severance pay and notice, while non-resident LCS players are required to be given at least two weeks notice. Teams are free negotiate over and above this, Riot said.

The developer additionally mentioned enhancements to the NACL governance model, such as the inclusion of a Team Participating Agreement (TPA) and a thorough vetting process for the participating team organisations.

In a bid to avoid a similar situation in the future, Riot Games also pledged to refine the working procedures between the LCS, the LCSPA, and the teams, as well as create a working group between teams and the LCSPA to better optimise scrim schedules.

In a statement, the LCSPA said: “Concessions were made by Riot and teams to ensure a more sustainable NACL future and a more equitable voice for players in their workplace… Today’s announcement proves the importance of giving players a meaningful seat at the table.

“While the agreements fall short of our initially stated goals, Riot has agreed to a series of important changes and committed to meaningful collaboration with the LCSPA before making future decisions.”

Meanwhile, Naz Aletaha, Global Head of LoL Esports, commented: “Delaying Summer Split was not a decision we took lightly, but ultimately the dialogue between the league, the LCSPA, and teams provided the space to realign on shared goals for the future of the LCS and NACL.

“Building for the long-term sustainability and success of the LCS ecosystem is the win-condition for us all. We want to thank the LCS fans, players, and teams for their patience during this period and look forward to seeing players back on the LCS stage next week.”

LCS matches this Summer will now be played on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays with updated information about tickets and a revised match schedule set to be announced soon.

Radina Koutsafti
Radina has been a Freelance Journalist for Esports Insider since 2021. When not playing Apex Legends, she enjoys writing about tech, equality and education in esports.