Global head of esports John Needham says Riot ‘will definitely consider’ double-elimination format for Worlds

The League community has shown its dissatisfaction with the current system.

Photo via Riot Games/Getty Images

With the 2021 League of Legends World Championship beginning to wind down, fans and analysts have already started to pose some new ideas for the format behind the tournament, especially for the knockout stage of the event.

Over the past month, people have brought up the possibility of moving on from the current system and jumping into a potential double-elimination format for future tournaments. And Riot’s global head of esports John Needham addressed this today during the Worlds 2021 finals media event.

“Now, every year we look at our format [and] we always want to deliver the most exciting competition that we have, one that’s great for our fans to view, [and] super exciting for the teams to participate in,” Needham said. “We’re very aware of the LPL format and how well it works in China. It’s something we’ll definitely consider moving forward.”

Related: It’s time for Riot to embrace double elimination at Worlds

In the LPL, the playoffs run with a double-elimination format with a lower bracket for any teams that lose an early series. Once the action reaches the fourth round, teams that lose here aren’t sent home right away. Instead, they get a second chance to make a miracle run to the finals. EDward Gaming, for example, lost in the fourth round of the 2021 LPL Summer Split playoffs but got a chance to run through the lower bracket.

They eventually ran it all the way up to their final matchup vs. FunPlus Phoenix, where they won their sixth regional trophy. This same team is now representing the LPL in the grand finals of the 2021 World Championship, where they’ll be facing off against DWG KIA for the Summoner’s Cup.

Although the current format can make for stunning upset victories, double elimination can lead to unique storylines of its own. League fans will have to wait and see if Riot decides to make any changes to the Worlds format for next year and beyond.


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