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LPL releases Summer Split schedule

The two playoff finalists from the Spring Split of the China-based League of Legends Pro League (LPL) will be idle this week as the LPL begins its Summer Split.

The schedule for the 10-week Summer Split was released Tuesday. Play will begin Friday and run through Aug. 9.

Spring Split playoff champion JD Gaming will open June 10 against Suning. A day earlier, Spring Split playoff runner-up Top Esports will begin its Summer Split campaign against Rogue Warriors.

The Summer Split will open Friday with two matches: EDward Gaming vs. Team WE, and LNG Esports vs. Suning. On Saturday, Victory Five will oppose Dominus Esports, and Oh My God will meet Royal Never Give Up. The Week 1 slate concludes Sunday with Team WE vs. Suning followed by Bilibili Gaming vs. Vici Gaming.

The LPL's 17 teams will compete in a single round robin of best-of-three matches, with the top eight sides advancing to the Summer Split playoffs.

All matches in the single-elimination postseason bracket will be best-of-five, with the dates yet to be announced. The top two teams will get double byes into the semifinals, and the third- and fourth-place teams will get byes in the quarterfinals. The fifth- through eighth-place teams will compete in the opening round.

The tiebreaker order for playoff positioning is game differential followed by head-to-head result.

The playoff winner will earn a spot in the League of Legends World Championship, scheduled to be played in China at a date to be announced.

The Summer Split prize pool has yet to be posted, but the JD Gaming earned 2 million yen (around $18,000) for winning the Spring Split playoffs, and Top Esports got 1 million yen (around $9,000) as the runner-up.

The LPL will be the first of the major League of Legends circuits to open its Summer Split. The League of Legends European Championship (LEC) and the North American-based League Champions

Team Unique sign illusion to Dota 2 squad

Following a successful two-month run as a Dota 2 substitute, Danil "illusion" Volchan has landed a full-time position with Team Unique.

Unique manager Gleb Antokhin announced the move in a social-media post on Monday.

illusion, a 17-year-old support player from Ukraine, had been with Unique since mid-April. He helped the squad finish tied for ninth in the ESL One Los Angeles 2020 - Online: Europe and Commonwealth of Independent States division, sixth in the Epic Prime League Season 1 and tied for 11th in the ESL One Birmingham 2020 - Online: Europe and CIS division.

illusion also competed for Unique last month in the WePlay! Pushka League Season 1: Division 2, where the team finished in second place and earned promotion to the top division for Season 2.

"He performed well when we played ESL LA, then we decided to give him a month to adapt and see what of it will come out," Antokhin said in a statement. "This is a fairly long test that has been passed. Danil is a young player, standing at the very beginning of his path, I hope that he will succeed."

illusion had a three-month stint with Magic Hands last year, and he briefly competed for FlyToMoon in February.

With Unique, he takes the roster spot of Russian Evgeniy "Chuvash" Makarov, who left the club on April 13. Chuvash and the remainder of Unique's current players -- Russians Alexey "Zitraks" Ischenko, Egor "19teen" Lexutin, Stanislav "633" Glushan and captain Ivan "VANSKOR" Skorohod -- all joined Unique when the team took over Gentlemen's roster on April 1.

--Field Level Media

tudsoN a free agent after leaving Secret

Filip "tudsoN" Tudev is a free agent after parting ways with Team Secret, he announced Tuesday on social media.

"From now on, I am a free agent!" tudsoN wrote in a statement, translated from Polish, on Facebook. "I would like to thank Secret for everything, a really very good organization and I could never say a bad word about them.

"These 8 months have been really cool since creating a mix, which made a lot of upsets in ECS for top teams to create a team together. I have gained a lot of valuable experience and I hope i have shown many what I can do even if it wasn't on my basic loan and I hope that I will show you what I can do as a sniper again. I am open to proposals as an AWPER from EU I PL!"

tudsoN, 20, joined Secret in November and served as AWPer until being benched in mid-May in favor of Guy "anarkez" Trachtman.

He previously spent short stints with Pompa Team and SEAL Esports.

--Field Level Media

MAD Lions win twice at BLAST Spring Showdown - Europe

MAD Lions cruised to two victories on Tuesday to push their record to 3-0 through two days of the BLAST Premier Spring Showdown European event.

MAD Lions routed Virtus.pro and Dignitas, assuring themselves a playoff spot and taking a commanding lead atop Group B, where the only other team above .500 is mousesports (1-0).

In Tuesday's other Group B match, Fnatic eased by Virtus.pro. In Group A, Ninjas in Pyjamas handled sAw before tying with Team Vitality.

The BLAST Premier Spring Showdown, a 10-team $325,000 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive event, originally was scheduled for June 2-7 at a site to be announced, but plans were altered due to the coronavirus pandemic. The tournament was split into two online competitions: a 10-team, $182,500 European division and an eight-team, $142,500 Americas division.

The Spring Showdown European event is divided into two five-team groups for round-robin play through Thursday. Each group game will consist of a single map, with three points awarded for a win and one for a tie.

The winner of each group will get a double bye directly to one of the two playoff finals on Sunday, while the second-place teams will head to one of the two semifinals on Saturday. The third- and fourth-place teams will compete in the playoff quarterfinals on Friday, and the fifth-place teams will be eliminated.

The winners of the two playoff finals will each earn $37,500 and a berth in the eight-team BLAST Premier Spring European finals. The two Sunday losers will meet June 15, with the winner also earning a spot in the eight-team, $500,000 online BLAST Premier Spring European Finals, scheduled for June 15-21.

Five teams already earned spots in the Spring European Finals based on their results in the Jan. 31-Feb. 16 regular season: FaZe Clan, Natus Vincere, G2 Esports, Complexity Gaming and OG.

The top two teams at the Spring European Finals will earn bert

PSG.LSG stay perfect at ESL One Birmingham - China

PSG.LGD swept Invictus Gaming on Tuesday to advance to the upper-bracket final of ESL One Birmingham Online tournament's China event.

PSG.LGD, who won all three of their Group A contests, recorded victories in 45 and 42 minutes, respectively, to defeat Invictus Gaming for the eighth time in nine matches in 2020.

The win propelled PSG.LSG into Thursday's upper-bracket final against the winner of Wednesday's tilt between CDEC Gaming and Royal Never Give Up. CDEC Gaming won all three of their Group B matches, while Royal Never Give Up (2-1) finished in second place in Group A.

Invictus Gaming, who won two of three Group B matches prior to Tuesday's setback, will look to rebound on Friday against the loser of the CDEC Gaming-Royal Never Give Up encounter.

ESL One Birmingham, a $300,000 Dota 2 major, had been scheduled for May 26-31 in Birmingham, England, before plans were changed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The tournament was separated into four online regional competitions: Europe/Commonwealth of Independent States, North America/South America, China and Southeast Asia.

The Southeast Asia event (six teams, $40,000 pool) is already complete. The other three divisions will conclude June 7, with Europe/CIS (16 teams, $200,000) and the Americas (six teams, $40,000) also underway.

The $55,000 China event began with two groups of four playing a single round robin of best-of-three matches. All playoff matches will be best-of-three until the best-of-five final on June 7.

ESL One Birmingham Online: China final group standings (map W-L in parentheses)
Group A
1. PSG.LGD, 3-0 (6-1)
2. Royal Never Give Up, 2-1 (5-2)
3. Team Aster, 1-2 (2-4)
4. Longinus, 0-3 (0-6)

Group B
1. CDEC Gaming, 3-0 (6-1)
2. Invictus Gaming, 2-1 (4-3)
3. EHOME, 1-2 (3-5)
4. Sparking Arrow Gaming, 0-3 (2-6)

--Field Level Media

Giants Gaming acquire x6tence

Giants Gaming Esports, the parent company of Vodafone Giants, have acquired Spanish esports team x6tence, the company announced Tuesday on Twitter.

More details about the brand's future "will be revealed in the upcoming weeks," Giants Gaming said.

Terms of the acquisition were not announced. Giants Gaming garnered $3.3 million in funding from Spanish businessman Jose Antonio Sanchez Cozar in May, and they have recently added several sponsorship deals.

"Giants Gaming has been consolidating an unprecedented market leadership position in recent years, and we believe that it is time to make a change of pace and go a step further," Giants Gaming CEO Jose Ramon Diaz said in a statement translated from Spanish. "With the acquisition of the x6tence brand and its incorporation into the project, we kick off a new stage of hope where we will work like never before to reformulate the rules of esports."

The Counter-Strike: Global Offensive roster currently includes: "Jonathan "JonY BoY" Munoz, Nicolas "NikoM" Miozzi, Tomas "tomi" Guardia, Matias "tutehen" Canale and Moris "OMG" Cid.

--Field Level Media

Activision delays release of Modern Warfare, Warzone

Activision announced that the new seasons of Modern Warfare, Warzone and Call of Duty: Mobile have been delayed to unspecified dates.

The company announced its decision on social media, noting that "now is not the time" for the launches in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd.

Floyd's death on May 25 ignited protests in Minneapolis and around the United States that have continued for more than a week, with some growing violent.

"Right now it's time for those speaking up for equality, justice and change to be seen and heard. We stand alongside you," Call of Duty News wrote on its official Twitter account.

Activision's decision is similar to that of Sony and EA Sports, who delayed their respective PlayStation 5 and Madden NFL 21 video game announcements.

Police officer Derek Chauvin, who is white, was arrested and charged with third-degree murder after pressing his knee on the neck of Floyd, an African American, for more than eight minutes. Chauvin was also charged with second-degree manslaughter.

--Field Level Media

PGA to host back-to-back events at Muirfield in July

A second PGA Tour event with title sponsor Workday will be held at Muirfield Village one week before the Memorial Tournament next month.

Copenhagen Flames add HECTOz to roster

Hector "HECTOz" Jensen officially is a member of Copenhagen Flames upon completion of a transfer from Wygers, the Danish organization announced Tuesday.

HECTOz is the latest addition of the Counter-Strike: Global Offensive team for Copenhagen Flames, who transferred AWPer Asger "Farlig" Jensen to GODSENT to replace Mikail "Maikelele" Bill on May 22.

HECTOz, 22, previously played with AGF Esport from June 2019 to April before spending nearly two months with Wygers.

HECTOz is expected to make his debut with Copenhagen Flames on Thursday in Home Sweep Home Cup 7.

Copenhagen Flames' current roster consists of Rasmus "HooXi" Nielsen, Magnus "Nodios" Olsen, Ismail "refrezh" Ali, Jonas "Queenix" Dideriksen, HECTOz and Morten "zEVES" Vollan (coach).

--Field Level Media

TYLOO, ViCi cruise at DreamHack Masters Spring - Asia

TYLOO and ViCi Gaming each cruised to a sweep on Tuesday to reach the upper-bracket final at the DreamHack Masters Spring 2020 - Asia event.

TYLOO handled Beyond Esports before VG dispatched Lucid Dream, both by a 2-0 margin in the best-of-three format. The victors will now face each other on Thursday, with the winner heading straight to Sunday's grand final.

The DreamHack Masters Jonkoping, a $250,000 Counter-Strike: Global Offensive event, originally was scheduled to be contested with 16 teams June 9-14 in Jonkoping, Sweden. However, the coronavirus pandemic forced the event to move to an online format featuring regional competitions for Europe, North America, Asia and Oceania.

The DreamHack Masters Spring - Asia began Tuesday with four teams in a double-elimination playoff bracket, vying for a $20,000 prize pool. All matches are best-of-three until the grand final, which will be best-of-five while giving the upper-bracket winner a one-map advantage. The champion will earn $10,000, with $5,000 going to the runner-up.

On Tuesday, TYLOO jumped on Beyond early, taking an 11-2 lead on Inferno and cruising to win the opening map 16-7. Beyond offered more resistance on Dust II, rallying from a 10-5 deficit to get within 12-10, but TYLOO closed it out 16-13 for the sweep.

All five TYLOO players finished with a positive kill-death differential. AWPer ZhengHao "DANK1NG" Lyu was dominant at plus-25, with no others finishing better than plus-8.

VG came out strong on Lucid Dream, taking an 11-4 lead on Mirage. Lucid Dream rallied to get within 12-11, but VG won the final four rounds to take the map 16-11.

On the second map, Nuke, Lucid Dream forged a 10-7 edge before VG won the final nine rounds for a 16-10 victory to seal the match. Rifler Yi "JamYoung" Yang (plus-20 K-D differential) and AWPer Andrew "kaze" Khong (plus-16) led the way.

Beyond and Lucid Dream, who both ent

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