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LCS games are played at Riot Games Arena in Los Angeles
Photo by Colin Young-Wolff via Riot Games

Riot plotting LCS import rule expansion in 2024, according to player leak

The LCS may be opening up to even more international talent very soon.

The LCS is lifting some of the restrictions that it has on import players for the 2024 season, at least according to Cloud9 AD carry Berserker: the Spring Split MVP claimed on his personal Twitch livestream earlier today the league would be expanding its import rules to allow teams to have three import slots on their rosters.

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Starting in 2024, the LCS will allow North American teams to have three imported players on their rosters, upping the current cap of two imports, according to Berserker.

“Riot said next year can be three Koreans or three Chinese,” Berserker suggested on-stream on April 16. “I’m not sure about that, but I heard about it.”

Berserker also related the word “import” to the Korean word “용병,” which directly translated means “mercenary” or “hired soldier,” according to a machine translation usually shown on Berserker’s Twitch stream. Berserker himself is an imported League player alongside his Cloud9 teammate, mid laner EMENES. Both carry players were instrumental in Cloud9’s recent run to an LCS championship earlier this month.

The LCS’ views towards import rules haven’t changed much in the last two seasons, although an alteration could be on the horizon.

The most recent update came in 2020, when the LCS introduced a rule change that would allow Oceanic players to be given residency in America. This gave way to an influx of talent from the OPL in the NA scene and allowed players like C9 top laner Fudge and Evil Geniuses AD carry FBI to find more permanent homes in the league.

The NA League scene has a robust reputation for shopping in the international market far more heavily than other regions. This split, all 10 teams used up at least one of their import slots, while seven of 10 used both.

While the league has no plans to make any immediate shifts for the 2023 Summer Split, another wave of international talent could be coming to NA during the end of year offseason, should Berserker’s leaks be proven true between now and then.

Riot has not commented on any changes officially as of writing.

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Michael Kelly
Staff Writer covering World of Warcraft and League of Legends, among others. Mike's been with Dot since 2020, and has been covering esports since 2018.