Riot Games kicks Renegades, Team Impulse, Team Dragon Knights from NA LCS and NACS

ByJacob Wolf ESPN logo
Monday, May 9, 2016

Riot Games released a string of competitive rulings late Sunday against League of Legends teams Renegades, Team Impulse and Team Dragon Knights.

Riot said Renegades "knowingly violated the competitive ban against Chris Badawi, misrepresented their relationship with TDK, and compromised player welfare and safety."

The ruling again Team Impulse is separate and deals with financial mismanagement.

Renegades and Team Impulse have been removed from Riot's professional league, the North American League Championship Series, while Team Dragon Knights has been removed from Riot's amateur league, the North American Challenger Series. Team Impulse was also fined $20,000.All three teams have until 11:59 p.m. PT on May 18 to sell their spots.

Former Renegades co-owner Chris Badawi and Team Dragon Knights co-owners, brothers Chris and Sean Shim, received permanent bans from participating in any future Riot-sanctioned League of Legends events. Current Renegades co-owner Christopher "MonteCristo" Mykles, who is one of the game's most popular commentators and analysts, will also be banned, but only for one year.

Riot Games alleges that the ownership of Team Dragon Knights and Renegades misled Riot officials during an investigation into a player trade made earlier this year, as reported by the Daily Dot. Four Renegades players were traded for two Team Dragon Knights players, which seemed suspicious to many people in the League of Legends industry.

According to Riot, the owners and management of Team Dragon Knights and Renegades told Riot that there was no corporate tie between the two teams. Riot now claims it has evidence linking the teams, although that evidence has not been released.

Riot also alleges Renegades did not treat its players properly, saying that multiple anonymous sources gave the publisher proof of confrontations between management and players, failures to fulfill financial and contractual obligations and failures to maintain a safe team environment. Following the release of the ruling, many current and former Renegades players spoke out on Twitter, opposing the ruling and denying the accuracy of its allegations.

My teammates and I aren't spineless. We would not put up with even one instance of an unsafe environment.

- Alberto Rengifo (@RNGCrumbz) May 9, 2016

I have never been mistreated on renegades and the entire experience working with the team has been a pleasure, players and especially staff.

- RF Legendary (@RF_Legendary) May 9, 2016

However, former Renegades support player Maria "Remilia" Creveling also spoke out after the ruling's release, calling herself an "avenger." Her role in the rulings is unclear at this time.

tfw you're an avenger


- Remi (@idolMariya) May 9, 2016

As for Impulse, Riot alleges that from 2015 to 2016, the team failed to pay its players on time or, in some cases, at all, and this season failed to properly contract its players. The team's former support player Kenneth "ExecutionerKen" Tang publicly supported that allegation on Mondayin a Twitlonger postdescribinghis version of the payment issues.

With three spots suddenly for sale in competitive League of Legends, there is speculation that traditional sports organizations will look at this as an opportunity to embed themselves in the scene.