There was a lot of controversy at League of Legends' big tournament last week . Teams are divided on the accusations of cheating and internet outages, but there seems to be consensus on one thing at least: North American teams need to get serious or get out.
The dominant Korean team, Azubu Frost, solidly trounced home favorites and the last North American team standing Team SoloMid in the quarter-finals Friday afternoon. In their post-game press conference , Frost praised TSM's improvement since their last meeting over a year ago, but said that North American teams need to get serious and be less prideful if they're going to be competitive in Season 3.
Azubu Frost's MadLife and his teammates were very gracious with their critique, but the message was clear: North American teams are not ready to compete on a global level. Considering that only a single North American victory was garnered during the entire three-day event (the combined records of Team Dignitas, CLG Prime, and Team Solomid were 1-7), they might have a point.
Members of the Russian team Moscow 5 were more blunt with their criticisms of the priorities of the NA teams at their press conference table , saying that “[NA teams] are not coming to win, they just come to make a show... they come with girlfriends, they're relaxing. They play solo rank all the time instead of practicing.”
North American champion Team Solomid has already revealed their plans to change their schedule and make sure they perform better in Season 3. In his recent AMA , team captain Reginald said that TSM will eat more healthy and focus on practicing as a team more than solo queue. They're adopting a new practice schedule of five days of hard practice, followed by two days off. The team is also considering hiring a coach to help them in Season 3.
The members of TSM were forced to spend a lot of their time during Season 2 livestreaming solo queue ranked matches in order to cover living expenses, which certainly distracted from their training time. Riot's offer to pay all professional LoL players an annual salary next season should free them to focus more on the behind-closed-doors team practicing that'll improve their tournament play.
TheOddOne, TSM's jungler took a more direct approach in his AMA , pointing out that Moscow Five's AlexIch later said that his comments were not directed at TSM in particular. TheOddOne believes they were directed towards CLG Prime and then joined in on the team-bashing, calling CLG Prime unprepared and unprofessional, saying that they were "full of s***, talked hella s***, didn't practice anything but how to say 'We will try harder next time' after they lost."
Josh Augustine spends more time playing MMOs and MOBAs than most people spend sleeping. He's written about them for PC Gamer as an intern, editor, and freelancer. He's currently a game designer at Sony Online Entertainment and would love to talk with you on Twitter (opens in new tab) .