Opinion: Breaking Up Regular Season Play Takes Away From a League's Importance

by Kevin Knocke

It's understandable that there are occasionally breaks in a professional sports season. Players need to rest, and usually this means that mid-season breaks are accompanied by a celebration of the game, usually in the form of all-star games and such.

However, for esports, which still uses plenty of big, multi-game events and only has a couple of games that have established real year-long traditional sports-style leagues.

So for CS:GO, due to the well documented over saturation of the scene, something like the ESL Pro League, which is definitely the biggest and most comprehensive CS:GO league out there, already loses importance when teams cancel or postpone games because they're flying back and forth between events (which, by the way, has already happened this week only two weeks in to the season).

Add on top of that, there's already been two major international events run by ESL themselves that have further cluttered up the landscape and are causing teams to postpone matches.

Add on top of THAT the fact that some teams have been playing their league matches overseas, such as the case of No. 2 SK Gaming on barely defeating Rush the other day with 120 ping from Germany.

Not only do breaks mess with the players and teams, but the storylines lose so much cohesion and interest when they're broken up like that.

When a full season long league is announced, it's expected that there will be minimal downtime in between the games. To have announced that there would be eight matches in a week and then only broadcast four and a half creates uncertainly with the audience.

Now, who knows if there will be games played on time whenever IEM Katowice is done?

The same is true to a lesser extent with League of Legends and the LCS. The LCS season is already split into two distinct Splits with a de-facto mid season break with the Mid Season International between the Spring and Summer Splits.

And that's enough.

But unfortunately LCS is on a two week break for the IEM World Championships. And all NA teams and SK Telecom T1 all declined their invites. So while there are of course some good teams there, the League of Legends world is on hold so the worst two LCK teams can play against a handful of international opponents.

Have all the invite international events you want. Just please, put them around the regular season, not in the middle of it.

More esports influencing from Knocke: Gaming for Long Stretches Without Breaks is Deadly | Sports Teams Can Use Esports to Reach a Young Demographic | Hearthstone Designers Want Change, But is it Enough?