Esports Arena: Awards for 'League of Legends,' Dr. Disrespect; Pocky Teams With 'Street Fighter'

Adela Sznajder
'League of Legends' World Championships 2019

Elsewhere in competitive gaming: 'Call of Duty League' sets opening schedule; Seoul Dynasty from 'Overwatch League' to retire player's number.

Esports Arena is a curated weekly roundup of the biggest stories in the world of online competitive gaming.

The 2019 Esports Awards were handed out Saturday night at the Esports Stadium Arlington in Arlington, Texas, honoring a number of the top names in competitive gaming across 27 categories. 

Herschel "Dr. Disrespect" Beahm earned the streamer of the year nod while 100 Thieves founder Matthew "Nadeshot" Haag was awarded personality of the year. Meanwhile, the live event of the year award went to the League of Legends World Championships, while the game also won the esports game of the year honor. Rookie of the year for PC games went to Fortnite’s Kyle “Bugha” Giersdorf, who won this summer's inaugural Fortnite World Cup while Call of Duty player Chris “Simp” Lehr earned the honor on console. 

Other award winners include Team Liquid’s selection for organization of the year, Alex "Goldenboy" Mendez for host of the year and Dominique "SonicFox” McLean for console player of the year.

Elsewhere, the latest partnership for Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition has been announced with an unlikely partner: Ezaki Glico USA, creators of the popular snack food Pocky. An exclusive version of Street Fighter V Pocky Edition will be playable at the Capcom Cup event in December, where the winner’s health bar will resemble a Pocky stick. Players at home can also attempt the challenge, with 11 winners chosen at random to have their matches featured onstage at the competition. Pocky will also be releasing limited edition packaging featuring characters from Street Fighter V beginning Dec 13. The Capcom Cup will be held at the Novo in Los Angeles from Dec. 13-15. 

Here’s what else is happening in the world of esports.

Team Liquid Signs League of Legends Pro

Longtime Fnatic League of Legends player Mads "Broxah" Brock-Pedersen has found a new home in Team Liquid. The team addressed the rumors of three-time LoL Worlds Top 8 qualifier Brock-Pedersen’s signing in a video on Twitter. Brock-Pedersen confirmed his departure from Fnatic in a letter also posted to Twitter, saying there will "always be a part of Fnatic left in my heart" and that the team is "more than just a workplace, it is a family." Pedersen’s signing will allow him to play in the North American League Championship Series in spring 2020.

Call of Duty League Announces Launch Weekend Schedule

The Call of Duty League has announced the schedule for the competition’s launch weekend, taking place Jan. 24-26 in Minneapolis, Minn. The weekend will feature 11 matches between 12 of the new league’s teams. The full schedule follows.

Jan. 24

Optic Gaming LA vs New York Subliners

Florida Mutineers vs London Royal Ravens

Los Angeles Guerrillas vs Minnesota Rokkr

Jan. 25

Seattle Surge vs Toronto Ultra

Dallas Empire vs Paris Legion

Atlanta Faze vs Toronto Ultra

Florida Mutineers vs Minnesota Rokkr

Jan. 26

Atlanta Faze vs Optic Gaming LA

Toronto Ultra vs Minnesota Rokkr

Chicago Huntsmen vs Optic Gaming LA

New York Subliners vs Florida Mutineers

The League also announced the schedules for the following 10 weeks of matches, starting with Week 2 in London on Feb. 8 and followed by slates in Atlanta, Paris, Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, Dallas, Chicago, Florida and finally Seattle. The full schedule can be viewed here

Overwatch League's Seoul Dynasty to Retire Player's Number

The Seoul Dynasty will be the first Overwatch League team to retire a player’s number, bestowing the honor upon Ryu "Ryujehong" Je-Hong. Je-Hong, an original member of the Seoul Dynasty and a two-time Overwatch World Cup champion with South Korea, is expected to become a free agent. The announcement was made by the team’s COO Arnold Hur during an interview between Je-Hong and analyst Jung Sorim. "I just wanted to let you know that no other person in the history of Seoul Dynasty will ever wear your jersey again," Hur said, also pledging to hold a full ceremony when Je-Hong decides to step away from the league, adding, "which hopefully is not for a very long time."