A few days ago, news came out that Immortals will be rebranding their holding company after the organization acquired $30 million in Series B funding. Following that, reports from ESPN’s Jacob Wolf suggest the team is looking into buying an LCS spot. As a reminder, Immortals used to be part of the NA LCS, but they were cut once franchising began. They are reportedly looking into bidding for OpTic Gaming’s League of Legends spot, which has been on sale since January.
Immortals will be rebranding their holding company to Immortals Gaming Club. The holding currently includes Immortals, the Overwatch team LA Valiant, and the MIBR brand. Additionally, the rebrand will also see Immortals founder Noah Whinston stepping down from a managerial role. Whinston will still be a significant shareholder in the company and participating in meetings. The CEO of Immortals, Ari Segal, told ESPN what the funding will be used for. Apart from using it to cover their Overwatch League franchise costs, the company is looking to expand into other markets.
One of these expansions includes bidding for the previously mentioned OpTic Gaming LCS spot. The spot would be part of them acquiring Infinite Esports & Entertainment, which currently holds the LCS spot along with the Houston Outlaws OWL spot. If Immortals were to acquire the company, they would have to let the OWL spot go due to the league’s rules. They state that a single owner in the OWL can’t have more than one team in the league.
OpTic Gaming is one of the oldest American esports organizations. Having their roots in shooters, the org decided to expand into League of Legends after the announcement of NA LCS franchising. The majority owner of the company is MLB’s Texas Rangers co-owner Neil Leibman. After two fairly unsuccessful splits, placing 9th and 7th in spring and summer 2018 respectively, reports started spreading of OpTic wanting to sell their spot. The sale, as previously mentioned, began back in January, but the team still had to play the spring split as they weren’t able to sell it in time.
Unlike OpTic, Immortals had a very successful run in the NA LCS. They finished first in the 2016 Spring regular season, dropping only a single game. Unfortunately, they underperformed in the playoffs and placed third at the end of the split. Similarly, they placed second in 2016 Summer but again finished third in the playoffs. They later lost to Cloud9 in the Regional Finals and weren’t able to qualify for Worlds. In their last season in the NA LCS, they finished 7th in the spring split and finished second both in the regular split and the playoffs in summer. This led to them qualifying for the League of Legends World Championship, where they placed fourth in a difficult group. After the franchised teams got announced in October 2017, we were shocked to find out Immortals weren’t chosen as one of the teams.
Vince Koyle is an esports writer, tech nerd and future CompSci student. He often likes to compare traditional sports to esports, showing his love for both kinds. Also tends to sometimes try too hard with explaining what esports is and how it isn’t any different than traditional sports. He mainly covers the League of Legends scene, with an emphasis on European and Asian leagues.