Riot Games has announced that the Mid-Season Invitational 2020 will be postponed to July this year, due to the Cornavirus' (COVID-19) continued global impact. The second-largest League of Legends esports event of the year will commence on July 3, and conclude on July 19. It's not known yet where MSI will be held. In addition to MSI being postponed, all planned Rift Rivals events have been cancelled.
In the announcement, Riot's Global Head of Esports John Needham states: "After discussing with our leagues and other stakeholders, we’ve made the decision to move our annual mid-year global tournament event from May to July this year. Shifting the tournament to the summer offers the best chance to see travel restrictions lifted, allowing teams from leagues around the world to travel and compete safely."
In order to align other competitions with the changed MSI date, the 2020 Summer Split starting date in all regions will be adjusted too, as to not overlap with the global event. The Summer Split starting dates are as follows:
- OPL - May 15th
- VCS - May 15th
- LCS - May 16th
- TCL - May 16th
- LCK - May 20th
- LEC - May 22nd
- CBLOL - May 23rd
- LPL - May 23rd
- PCS - May 30th
- LJL - May 31st
- LCL - June 6th
- LLA - TBD
The announcement is the latest in a long string of measures taken in competitive League of Legends to combat the Coronavirus outbreak. At the start of the year, the LPL announced an indefinite suspension of its matches, although they have continued in an online format as of this week. The LCK had been playing without an audience for the past few weeks, but Riot Korea too announced that all competition would be put on hold starting this week.
Other esports and gaming events aren't immune to the virus' outbreak either. From Overwatch League to TwitchCon Europe, many organizers have announced to either relocate their events, play in an online format, or even indefinitely suspend the planned festivities. You can find our overview of all affected events here.
Storyteller by heart. If something is competitive, I am interested in it.