NLC announces major format changes due to Riot Games’ ERL changes, UKEL postpones Open, Promotion and Relegation tournaments, fans react to Riot’s decision

NLC League of Legends

The Northern League of Legends Championship, or NLC, has announced major changes to its format, causing ripple effects throughout European League of Legends.

The NLC and UKLC Promotion and Relegation tournaments have been postponed indefinitely.

This means the top two teams from the Telia Masters which finished last week, Lanomania (Sweden) and NYYRIKKI (Finland), will not have a chance to attempt promotion to the NLC.

According to an NLC release, however, ‘activities to replace the relegations, alongside much more detailed news about the NLC’s new format will be announced in the coming weeks’.

The postponement of those tournaments has also led the UKEL — the UK league that is one rung below the UKLC and two below the NLC — to postpone its own Open, Promotion and Relegation tournaments.

“Currently, the UKEL does not have any further information other than what has been posted publicly by DreamHack,” UKEL Operations Director Alex Winton said in a release. “However, we are seeking clarification as fast as we can so that we can provide a more concrete update to all prospective teams.

“This is of course not how we planned the 2021 competitive year to end and we hope that we will still be able to deliver an open tournament and subsequent promotion and relegation series. However, with the current lack of information we cannot confidently plan a tournament for which there may be no reward.

“As soon as the UKEL has more information regarding the plans for the NLC ecosystem, we will provide a further update to you.”

Fans and players on social media are disappointed, particularly given the insecurity it’s causing UKEL teams, but most appreciate the UKEL’s hands were tied:

Some were highly critical of Riot Games for indiscriminately derailing the seasons of many teams competing in European Regional Leagues (ERLs):

The NLC is the official League of Legends competition for the Nordic Region, UK, and Ireland. It runs in parallel to the League of Legends European Championship (LEC) and connects to the European Masters. It was formed in 2020.

Tricked Esport was the last organisation to win the NLC, London Esports last won the UKLC, and LDN UTD most recently won the UKEL.

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