League of Legends

TSM miss out of the LoL World Championship for the first time ever

by Joe O'Brien

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Team SoloMid will not appear at this year’s LoL World Championship, after falling 0-3 to Cloud9 in the final of the NA Regional Qualifier.

For as long of League of Legends has existed as an esport, TSM has been a by-word for domestic dominance. From the start of the LCS era until 2018, there had never even been a final in North America that didn’t feature Team SoloMid.

That domestic success has always guaranteed TSM a spot at the World Championship. They were one of only eight teams to compete at the very first “LoL World Championship”, an event which many discount as being of the stature of subsequent Worlds, but TSM are even the only team to have appeared every year in the “Korean era” from Season 3 onwards.

This season has seen TSM truly dethroned as the kings of NA for the first time. Their last chance to reach Worlds was through the Regional Qualifier, and though they beat Echo Fox comfortably, it was ultimately Cloud9 that took the last spot. With TSM falling short this season, there is now no team or organization that has appeared at every single LoL World Championship.

The 2018 season has been one of firsts for TSM, but none of them good. The Spring Split saw TSM fail to reach the finals for the first time. This is the first season that TSM has not won a domestic title at all, and now the first time they won’t be at the World Championship.

To add insult to injury, Yilliang ‘Doublelift’ Peng, who was dropped by TSM ahead of the 2018 season, moved to Team Liquid where he has won both the Spring and Summer Splits and now takes North America’s top seed into the World Championship.

TSM isn’t the only big name that won’t be making an appearance at worlds, however. Three-time winners SK Telecom T1 and their super-star mid-laner, Lee ‘Faker’ Sang-hyeok, will also be absent after falling short in the LCK Regional Qualifier.

The 2018 League of Legends World Championship kicks off with the Play-In stage beginning October 1 and concludes with the grand finals on November 3.