The Esports Integrity Coalition has responded to the Supreme Court decision to overturn the federal ban on sports betting within the United States.
Following the enactment of the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, regulated sports gambling was made illegal across the United States other than the state of Nevada.
Although various states and organizations attempted to lobby for the law to be overturned so that citizens could place bets on different events in an authorized fashion, the decision held strong time and time again.
However, on Monday, May 14th, the Supreme Court decided to overturn the 1992 law, giving states the right and opportunity to potentially legalize sports gambling in the coming years, which generated a discussion between community members on both sides of the decision.
The ruling will also allow for gambling in the world of esports – a practice which has already been seen in certain nations where sports gambling is legal, and regulated by their respective governments.
When discussing the decision to allow federally regulated sports and esports gambling, the Esports Integrity Coalition, a group formed to fight against ‘issues of common interest’ such as match manipulation and betting fraud, mentioned how ‘well-enforced’ regulation is the proper way to handle gambling.
There is no doubt that the availability of gambling in sports can be a threat to integrity, but good operators have as much to lose as anyone – betting will happen regardless, so good regulation well enforced is the only sensible option. Prohibition doesn’t work at all.
The Valorant First Strike North American Open Qualifiers started on October 26, with 128 of the best Valorant squads from the continent all battling it out to make into the competition. However, only one could be the winner, and that was Cloud9 Blue.
First Strike is being called “the first major in VALORANT esports,” at least by Riot Games and their organizing partners Nerd Street Gamers.
There are certainly enough teams to keep track of as the bracket of the first Open Qualifiers get going. Let’s get right into it and give you a rundown of the week’s action if you missed it.
Cloud9 Blue win NSG First Strike NA Open Qualifier over Envy
Envy were fast out of the gates in the Grand Final of the NSG First Strike NA Open Qualifier against Cloud9 Blue.
They took a hold of Ascent, and looked like the more clean and coordinated team as they eked out the win on the final round of regulation.
However, it may have just been a flash in the pan. Cloud9 hit back hard on their pick of Split, and it was easy to see why they picked it. TenZ solo out-fragged the entirely of Envy in the first half, and ended up with 29 kills when all was said and done.
The 11-1 score line at halftime was too much for Envy to overcome, eventually falling 13-7.
Cloud9 rode that Split momentum into Bind in the final-map decider. While Envy won the pistol on attack, Cloud9 steadied the ship to go on a spree. They won the next seven rounds to cement their lead, and put Envy on the back foot in the second half yet again.
Cloud9’s aggressive B-site takes on attack overwhelmed Envy’s defence, as they continued to push forward on the gas. Envy only got one round on their defence as they were decimated 13-5 on the final map, with Cloud9 securing the title and the first seed heading into the Closed Qualifier.
[First Strike | #VALORANT]@Cloud9 Blue are your NSG First Strike NA Open Qualifier champions, taking down @Envy in the final!
The Valorant First Strike tournament is the first of its kind for Riot Games’ newest FPS. The tournament kicked off with 128 teams participating in the first NA Open Qualifiers, which got cut down to 32 teams.
All of the top 16 teams will advance to the first official qualifier on November 4 – 8, so being included on the podium here is more about pride than anything else.
As long as teams finish in the upper half of the 32-team bracket, they’ll get another chance in the second round of opening qualifiers.
With the NA qualifiers in full swing, it’ll be interesting to see who comes out on top.
Valorant First Strike NA Open Qualifier schedule and results
The competition began on October 26 at 5 PM EST with the 128-team open, with each day seeing further action at the same time until October 30. This whittled down the pool to 16 teams, who will then compete in the first closed qualifier on November 4.
The top four teams from the closed qualifier will advance straight to the First Strike main event. The next four teams will advance into the second open tournament for another chance to fight for their spot in the competition as well.