G2 owner and founder Carlos “ocelote” Rodríguez Santiago has criticized the ecosystem in League of Legends esports, pointing out the disadvantages to teams in the current market.
Speaking to Yahoo Esports in an interview, ocelote responded to a question about team relegation.
“We are not in a balanced system in League of Legends. Why is that? Because players are in an open market territory, there is no salary cap. Therefore they can always have biddings for them up until whatever.There is no cap. So we clubs are paying salaries in an open market. However, we clubs are not receiving revenue in an open market.”
“Let me explain. We [do] not have access to every partner we can. We are limited by simple rules of the league. Second of all, we cannot have access to media rights that theoretically, because we are a part of the broadcast, we should have access to. You can argue more or less… that we do not own the IP. But because we appear, we are also entitled to part of the media rights. However because we do not have access to that, we are not able to generate the revenue in an open market. You see the imbalance? We pay salaries in an open market, but we do not receive money in an open market. Therefore, as long as we want to be a relevant team, we will always pay more than we will receive.”
Prior to speaking about the difficulties of working in the current market, ocelote explained why he favors the team relegation model.
“Personally, I love relegation,” he said. “Without relegation, I would not have been able to make G2 in LCS. I grew up in a culture where relegation was good.”
He also discussed his thoughts on reports that League of Legends team owners wrote to Riot Games with requested changes for the LCS, and the public’s negative reaction to this.
“I’m a big believer that whoever thinks that’s wrong, he knows within his variables that it is wrong. It’s either he’s missing variables to get better context of the whole situation, or we are plain wrong. But truthfully if you look at the numbers, and I try to be as pragmatic as I can with all this, I just see that it is clear that we are not in a balanced system in League of Legends.”