League of Legends esports team based in Thailand MEGA Esports' CEO was banned earlier today for failing to pay its players. Arnold Tandra has been banned from all Riot Games tournaments until the year of 2020.
MEGA is considered the main team in the LST region, being champions of the 2019 Spring Split of the League SEA Tour, making an appearance at Worlds Championship, and being eliminated in the play-in stage. According to reports, the team has not paid its players during the 2019 season.
In a statement, Riot Games said “He (Arnold Tandra) will be eligible to participate in the competition again in the year 2022 after formal consideration,” and that the reason for the ban is due to “Maintaining a good environment and ecosystem for our professional players is the priority for the people in charge of the competitive scene.”
Starting next year, the LST will join forces with LMS, forming one league, featuring 10 teams. Prioritizing the fan experience, Riot evaluated the ecosystem of the region, formed by LMS’s Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau, as well as other Southeast Asian regions like Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand.
Earlier today, MEGA's jungler Juckkirsts “Lloyd” Kongubon announced in his Facebook page that he would be retiring from League of Legends esports:
"Today I'm going to stream for long time, but there is a reason to be down from the stream. I'm sorry.
From the news that came out, that's it. Haha. I shouldn't have a post. Thank you. I'm from the team. I want to thank you myself. I'm out of the team. It's the cause.
Thank you for the encouragement from everyone in the past. Thank you for the experience that made me grow up. 3 Korean friends.. and a bit of disappointment."
The player linked lol.garena's statement regarding MEGA's situation to his farewell post, which reads:
"MEGA Esports owner violated the international policy of the League of Legends Esports, as Riot's Arnold Tandra had paid the players late or not fully, as stated in the official contract.
Maintaining a good ecosystem and environment for professional players is the most important thing for team owners and the teams that manage the league. Tandra doesn't take these principles into account, and must have the right to participate in the League of Legends competition leagues around the world in all positions and roles revoked.
However, Mr Tandra will not be able to participate with every team in every region under any position or role. He will be eligible to participate in the competition again in the year 2022 after formal consideration."