Riot suspending live audience, tailgates, and press from LCS Studios amid coronavirus concerns

Precautions must be taken to combat the pandemic.

Photo via Riot Games

LCS commissioner Chris Greeley informed the League of Legends community today that live audience, tailgates, and press at LCS Studios will be suspended “until further notice.” The commissioner once again cited “the safety of our pros, fans, and employees” as the main factor for this decision.

Riot initially decided to suspend fan meets, victory high fives, and post-game handshakes at LCS games. But as coronavirus concerns continue to grow, more precautions are being taken.

“As a league, we need to stand by our policy of putting the safety of our pros, fans, and employees first,” Greeley said. “The LCS and Academy games will continue as scheduled and will be broadcasted from the LCS Studios.”

Fans who purchased tickets will be issued full refunds within the next four to six business days.

Riot is still assessing the best option for the 2020 Spring Finals, which are scheduled to be held in Frisco, Texas. A decision should be made by March 20 on whether the finals will be moved to the LCS Arena in Los Angeles.

Related: Every esports event impacted by coronavirus | Shutdowns, audience limits, and more

Within the esports and gaming industry, TwitchCon Amsterdam was canceled and the Game Developers Conference was postponed. The LCK and IEM Katowice playoffs were held without an audience and now it appears the LCS is following suit.

Outside of esports, it was announced yesterday that the NBA would be indefinitely suspended. Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker heard the bad news while streaming Call of Duty: Warzone last night.

“What the fuck, bro?” a surprised Booker said before turning off his stream. “What the fuck is going on, bro?”

The coronavirus will likely continue to cause suspensions and cancellations of future events and tournaments.