Former 100 Thieves jungler Amazing won't compete in 2020
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Maurice “Amazing” Stuckenschneider has announced he will pause his competitive League of Legends career for the 2020 season. Instead, the former 100 Thieves jungler will “go another direction” after being released from the roster.

Amazing’s history on 100 Thieves

“This year it was obviously different, and I do think I’ve deteriorated – but cramming a year’s work into 4 months was a lot on me, and I did that twice,” Amazing continued. “Getting used to different team structures and overtaking shot calling is a huge responsibility, and other aspects suffered.”

After 100 Thieves finished dead last during the 2019 League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) Spring Split, they brought Amazing on to help. However, the Thieves didn’t do much better in the Summer Split, only achieving an 8th place finish. Since then, Amazing has been replaced on the 100 Thieves roster with the return of William “Meteos” Hartman, who last played for OpTic Gaming.

Pros and cons of high salaries

During his announcement, Amazing also spoke on his perspective on the League of Legends esports scene. This included a conversation about how certain players wouldn’t care about playing badly, as long as said player established connections with people from other teams to ensure the possibility of a future contract. Another topic consisted of how academy players, free agents, and retired professional players do not get much recognition or fan interaction, which often takes a toll on their mood. Amazing described that the entrance of venture capitalists and angel investors have also inflated salaries in the league to “insane proportions”, which comes with pros and cons.

While this is great for the players, it isn’t so great for smaller organizations that cannot match the 6 – 7 figure salaries paid. In addition, the prize earnings from competitions don’t matter as much anymore, compared to other esports titles like Dota 2 where players are driven to win events specifically for the prize pool earnings. Amazing cites Dignitas top laner Heo “Huni” Seung-hoon as an example, who would make more in a week from his salary than the prize pool from taking first in the North America LCS. Amazing compares it to himself competing years ago, where winning instead meant possibly multiplying your salary.

With the average salary in the LCS being $300,000 and this number only rising, will we see even more organizations forced out from the scene? Or will the rising prices help bring better teams into the league, who have the funds to contribute to the esports ecosystem? Let us know about your opinion, and keep up with Daily Esports for all of your League of Legends coverage.

Ethan Chen is a writer with over 3 years of experience covering esports, gaming, and business.