VCS Champions GAM Esports To Miss Out on 2021 MSI Because of COVID-19 Restrictions
The 2021 VCS Spring Split champions GAM Esports (formerly known as the GIGABYTE Marines) will be unable to compete at the 2021 Mid-Season Invitational (or MSI for short) due to travel restrictions related to COVID-19.
Riot explored numerous solutions that would allow GAM Esports to participate somehow but could not come up with a way to make it happen. Now, the VCS was never going to leave much of a mark given the caliber of teams that will compete in Iceland, but they do hail from one of the most passionate regions in the world and not having their (feisty and deceptively capable) champions in the mix is quite depressing, to say the least.
Then again, the exact same thing happened last September as well.
A Noticeable Void
The lack of VCS representatives at the 2020 World Championship was definitely felt. The fact that their most deserving players will once again miss out on an international tournament is highly upsetting. This is what they’ve been working so hard to achieve: the opportunity to trade blows with the very best teams the world of competitive League has to offer, and now they’ve been prevented from doing so for the second time in just a couple of months.
And, frankly, we’re bummed to see this happen not just because it’s so inherently unfair to the VCS champions but also for selfish reasons: their representatives have always delivered on the international stage. Now, granted, they never succeeded in truly upsetting the status quo, but boy, did they make things exciting! The first time GAM Esports made the world take notice was all the way back in 2017, and even though so many years have passed, we still remember just how exciting their plays were and with how much fervor they fought with.
They stood on stage with mice and keyboards that cost less than $10, and yet you would’ve never been able to tell based on their level of play. They’re living proof that it’s never about the gear or the fancy jerseys, the behind-the-scenes vlogs, and a slew of high-profile sponsors, but rather about one thing and one thing only: heart. Passion takes center stage, and that’s something the VCS champions always had ample amounts of.
Fortunately, Riot will still award them with their full share of the prize pool which is definitely a wholesome move on their part. It’s not much of a consolation prize, but at least they haven’t been left empty-handed.
With GAM Esports missing out on 2021 MSI, you would think the tournament format would change, but that’s not the case. Eleven teams (or champions, rather) will still compete, split into three groups — three teams in Group A, four in Group B, and four in Group C.
The 2021 Mid-Season Invitational is scheduled to begin on May 6, so mark your calendars as you do not want to miss any of the action!