TSM's LCS Saga Comes To an End After 12 Years
On 20th September, Shopify Rebellion announced that it purchased Team SoloMid's (TSM) LCS [League of Legends Championship Series] slot and that it will joining the league in 2024. With this, TSM, one of the most storied and successful organizations in the history of North American League of Legends, is officially leaving the LCS to pursue its goal of becoming World Champion in another major region.
TSM's origins go all the way back to the very beginning of League of Legends esports and it certainly played a key part in transforming North American esports into the industry giant that it is today.
Notably, the TSM League of Legends roster will now compete under the Shopify Rebellion banner beginning in the 2024 season.
Shopify Rebellion Joins LCS in 2024
Shopify Rebellion will be one of the ten franchised partners in the LCS in 2024 and it officially confirmed that it is taking over TSM's slot for the next year. According to Kellen Browning of New York Times, "TSM sold the slot to Shopify for about $10 Million (USD), per source."
Talking about this new esports venture, Shopify's Esports Program Director Dario "TLO" Wünsch said, “Entering League of Legends – one of the largest esports titles, with a rich competitive history – felt like an obvious next step for us as we continue to grow our presence in esports. We’re excited to work with the former TSM roster and for them to compete in the LCS under the Shopify Rebellion banner.”
TSM Founder and CEO Andy "Reginald" Dinh noted that this acquisition is a milestone moment for TSM and added that the organization believed this will ignite fresh success and elevate the competitiveness in esports.
Meanwhile, the head of LoL Esports Americas, Carlos "Cacophonie" Antunes welcomed Shopify Rebellion to the LCS and acknowledged the organization's commitment to esports. Cacophine added, "These values are very much aligned with Riot’s, and we are thrilled to welcome Shopify Rebellion to the community!"
Following this development, Shopify now fields rosters in the following esports titles:
League of Legends
Street Fighter 6
TSM in LCS Through the Years
Though TSM (formerly SoloMid.net) was founded in 2009, it was only in 2011, the organization started fielding players to participate in professional League of Legends tournaments. Over the years, TSM managed to rope in some of the most influential League of Legends pros and personalities to its roster and saw immense success.
With seven LCS trophies, TSM is the team with the most number of title wins, and has the second-most top-four finishes in the league with 16 appearances.
The last year or so of facing hardships, both in and outside the game, has certainly not taken anything away from the successes and laurels that TSM picked up over the years.
Announcing its departure from the LCS, TSM penned an emotional post on Twitter. It said, "The black-and-white will live on through all of us, through the fans, through our history. It will live on through all our teams that compete with that very same championship mentality and Baylife bravado. Our journey towards more championships doesn't end here. Thank you for the memories, LCS."
The news about TSM looking to sell its LCS spot was reported first last year in July 2022. TSM considered selling its LCS spot to reduce the costs of the organization's various esports projects and also due to the falling popularity of the game as a whole in NA. For a brief period, TSM was also eyeing for Misfits Gaming's slot in the League of Legends EMEA Championship (LEC).
TSM is not the first organization to sell its LCS slot this year. In April 2023, one of the biggest names in the League of Legends competitive scene in North America, Counter Logic Gaming (CLG), also bid adieu to the league. With both CLG and TSM out of the LCS, fans will forever miss the friendly banter and the never-ending competitiveness between the two OG organizations.