In the midst of the Call of Duty League season, esports organization The Guard shut down, firing a majority of its staff. This organization owns both the Los Angeles Guerillas in the CDL, as well as the LA Gladiators in the Overwatch League and The Guard VALORANT team. The Guard was formed in late 2021, as the esports organization owned by Kroenke Sports & Entertainment, owners of soccer team Arsenal, football team Los Angeles Rams, NBA’s Denver Nuggets, NHL’s Colorado Avalanche and a lot more.
Now, just under two years later, the organization has pulled out of all esports.
The Guard shuts down, former employees reveal
When this was first revealed, many former staff members of The Guard found out as the fans of the organization did. It was a surprise, with little word coming to them about their firing beforehand.
BREAKING: Layoffs have now hit The Guard as they lay off all of their content, social, talent, and creative teams
Sources: myself lmao pic.twitter.com/8YZS3kF3Ia
— Hunter (@HUN2R) February 22, 2023
This includes workers who moved to The Guard’s headquarters in Los Angeles days before the mass exodus. One key example is the former lead apparel manager of The Guard, who moved two days before these layoffs went live.
Moved here two days ago and now everyone is laid off LMAOOO what a fucking joke.@hollywoodparkca you have the most disgusting HR department. Security was trying to detain me for simply trying to backup important files on my laptop.
Also does know how to get out of 19 lease? pic.twitter.com/SQDaOQBtof
— Ariel Ben-Abraham (@ArielCreate) February 22, 2023
As stated, teams laid off include executive roles, socials, content, talent and creative teams.
The Guard’s teams left in limbo
With these layoffs, the assumption was that the teams that the organization owned weren’t far behind. Thanks to a report from The Esports Advocate, we know that the two franchised esports teams that The Guard looked over are for sale. Both the Los Angeles Guerillas of the CDL and Los Angeles Gladiators of the OWL are looking to compete, but are also looking for new ownership.
According to James Fudge in this report, if The Guard does not find a buyer by the end of the year, the teams will shut down. We have yet to see what is going to happen to the other teams that are overseen by The Guard, including their Apex Legends and VALORANT rosters.
Polish-Canadian game enthusiast. I've been entrenched in gaming for as long as I can remember, with my first game being Pokemon Yellow and my most played games being Borderlands 2 and Overwatch. I have a degree in Film Studies, but writing about esports just makes my job all the better.