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League of Legends LCS postpones all games in response to coronavirus [UPDATE]

The North American League of Legends competitive LCS had originally restricted attendance in the Spring season, but now all matches have been suspended.

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UPDATED (3/13/2020 - 5:08PM PT): The North American League of Legends competitive organization, LCS has issued an update on their earlier response to the coronavirus. Though originally, the LCS announced it was going to restrict audience and press attendance, the organization has just announced a new statement suspending all operations, including LCS and Academy games until further notice. The LCS's postponing of the Spring season follows the European League of Legends competitive LEC's similar decision earlier today. You can read the updated statement just below, as well as the original story beneath it. No details on rescheduling or plans for online competition have been announced at this time.


Original Story: As the issues and concerns regarding coronavirus have continued through this season, some esports leagues have pivoted to limiting audience contact with players and staff in order to contain the risk. North American League of Legends competitive league, the LCS, is the latest to enact policies of this nature. They just announced that tailgating and audience and press attendance will be suspended until further notice to help keep fans, players, and staff safe through the coronavirus pandemic.

The LCS announced its decision on the official LCS Twitter on March 12, 2020. Though matches will still go on as regularly scheduled through Spring Split 2020, direct audience attendance, including press presence and tailgating will be prohibited until further notice.

“As a League, we need to stand by the policy of putting the safety of our pros, fans, and employees first,” wrote LCS Commissioner Chris Greeley. “The LCS and Academy games will continue as scheduled and be broadcasted from the LCS Studios. We know this may be disappointing to our fans, but we ask for your understanding with this very difficult decision.”

Greeley added that refunds will be offered and LCS-Tickets@RiotGames.com should be contacted with any issues.

The LCS is not the first to enact no-audience policies against concerns and risks of the coronavirus. Mortal Kombat’s Final Kombat event, PUBG Mobile competitive events and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive major IEM Katowice enacted similar policies very close to their event dates in the wake of highly increased concern over COVID-19. This doesn’t even include the massive and growing list of gaming and esports events that have been outright canceled or postponed due to concerns over the coronavirus.

At the very least, we’ll still be able to watch the LCS games and root our teams on online as the schedule continues via broadcasts like the LCS Twitch. Stay tuned for any further changes as details and updates become available.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at tj.denzer@shacknews.com and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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