League Championship Series commissioner Chris Greeley announced today that the proposed sale of Echo Fox's LCS slot to Kroenke Sports and Entertainment has fallen through, and that Echo Fox's participation in the series has been terminated. As stipulated by an agreement Greeley confirmed in July, the LCS has now assumed control of efforts to sell the slot.
"On August 13, the LCS and Echo Fox entered into an agreement that will terminate Echo Fox’s participation in the LCS. As part of that agreement, the LCS will sell the now-vacant tenth slot in the LCS and will provide the bulk of the proceeds from the sale to Echo Fox," Greeley said.
"Starting on August 16, 2019, we’ll be opening a 30-day application process to select our new long term partner for the open slot in the LCS. We’ll be using an expedited process similar to the 2017 system that we used to select our initial long-term partners. We will focus on evaluating each applicant’s ownership profile, brand strategy, business plan, and team operational plan. Our goal remains to have an orderly transition as we add a new LCS team ahead of the 2020 season."
Echo Fox was compelled by the LCS to sell its slot following a public dispute between founder Rick Fox and shareholder Amit Raizada over a racist slur Raizada admitted to using in conversation with former Echo Fox CEO Jace Hall. Fox initially indicated that he would leave the organization over the slur but later agreed to stay on if Raizada was removed. After conducting its own investigation, the LCS also demanded Raizada's removal, and warned that his continued presence "may adversely impact the future of Echo Fox in the LCS."
Raizada has thus far refused to relinquish his holdings in Echo Fox, however, and while he previously admitted his use of racial slurs, he denied a more recent allegation by Rick Fox that he had "put a gun to the company's head" by making changes to the ownership structure aimed at enriching himself.
"This old charge was a case of mistaken identity. As soon as I learned of it, the case was dismissed," Raizada said in an emailed statement. "Once again, Rick Fox and his family are distorting the truth in their deceitful campaign against me and the other shareholders of Echo Fox."
It's not clear whether this is directly related to today's events, but earlier this afternoon Fox tweeted this (and I think it might be):
NEW CHAMPION ALERTA #Zilean Ultimate would be real nice right about now 👊🏽 #eZilean 25:17Abilities: Time bomb, Rewind, Time warp, Time in a Bottle, Chronoshift pic.twitter.com/SWvyVpAJjcAugust 14, 2019