Riot has announced the end of the LCS Academy for a new North America Challengers League tournament. This new league will also replace the Proving Grounds tournament and include the 10 LCS Academy and six Provisional teams. The North America Challengers League will kick off in 2023 and run parallel to the LCS.
North America Challengers League Format
The North America Challengers League will have two splits followed by playoffs in each split. The 16 teams will compete in a single round robin of best of two matches for Playoffs placement. After this, all 16 teams will compete in the NACL playoffs in a double-elimination bracket with a mix of best-of-three and best-of-five series.
The 10 LCS Academy teams competing in the League will not be eligible for relegation but the Provisional teams will. The Provisional teams will consist of LCS amateur teams and other non-LCS amateur teams if there are slots left.
Asides from the NACL, Riot will hold a Qualifiers each split to allow more NA talent to compete and fight to enter the League. There will be Open qualifiers consisting of 32 teams which will result in a top-eight at the end. Each qualifiers team will receive points based on placement that will reset after the split.
Furthermore, after the NACL Playoffs for Spring and Summer, there will be a promotion tournament. Here, the top four NACL Qualifier teams will face the bottom four Provisional teams in a double-elimination series. The four teams who win the match will compete in the next NACL split.
Additionally, all NACL players must be NA residents and at least 15 years old. Teams must also limit contracts for Provisional players to two years and field a seven-player roster, a head coach and a manager.