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IEM won’t feature League of Legends for the 2017 season

SK Telecom T1 will be the one of the final IEM Katowice champions for the time being (Patrick Strack/ESL)

UPDATE: Carmac’s statement has been deleted from Reddit by moderators. You can still read excerpts from the statement below.

UPDATE 2: The Reddit post is back up.

The original story follows below.

League of Legends’ biggest third-party tournament series is no more. IEM’s Michal “Carmac” Blicharz has announced via Reddit that League of Legends won’t be featured at Intel Extreme Masters events for the 2017 season. [The statement was deleted, but Carmac has also confirmed the announcement via Twitter. {The post is back}]

The statement (now deleted) read, “We have taken a decision not to schedule IEM events around Riot’s LCS calendar. In the current LoL landscape during the off season Western players are being traded or are on vacation while Korea and China are running tournaments with their teams locked in. Working around those limitations didn’t seem like the right way to move forward.

“Our 2017 events won’t happen to be in a period where pro LCS teams are free to compete. In discussions with Riot it was also determined that LCS wouldn’t pause for Katowice. This means that for the first time since 2011 LoL won’t be there. I am sad I won’t see some of you there next year.”

With the introduction of more Riot Games-hosted tournaments like the newly announced Rift Rivals, it’s unclear whether or not League of Legends will ever return to the IEM stage.

Says Carmac, “As I write this, I am not sure if we will or will not run LoL events in IEM in the future. Should scheduling events around LCS become easier, I would certainly like us to. ESL will continue to support LoL overall with national championship events around the world.”

For more, head over to the Yahoo Esports League of Legends hub.

Follow Taylor Cocke on Twitter @taylorcocke.