ESL VP on partnered teams participating in other events: "they're certainly incentivized to pick ours"

Michal “CARMAC” Blichards, Vice President of Pro Gaming for ESL, took part in an exclusive interview with which allowed us to repurpose the interview. To read the original interview in Russian, click here.

The interview in English can be read below and discusses details of the Pro Tour, the Louvre Agreement/partnered teams, stakeholders, expanding, and more.

-Do teams have to participate in a particular amount of Pro Tour events?

CARMAC: They can participate in any number of ESL Pro Tour events as they wish it. It can be any number, but accepting invitations makes teams eligible for revenue sharing from ESL Pro Tour Masters events, with two declines allowed per partner team.

-How exactly does this rule apply to the Major?

CARMAC: This rule has no impact on CSGO Majors at all.

-Do you expect to expand the number of stakeholders?

CARMAC: We have tools built into the agreement whereby new teams can be added as partner teams or poorly performing teams could be voted out by partner teams. The group of partner teams is built in order to include rising teams in the future.

-If a team-stakeholder lost all their matches, will they drop to Mountain Dew League or still have a spot in Pro League?

CARMAC: The permanent slot will be reviewed if teams continuously perform poorly over a period of 4 seasons. Finishing last in 3 out of the previous 4 seasons could mean that the team is voted to lose their partner status. 2/3 of the existing partner teams would have to vote for it to make it happen.

-There are some similarities between this league and a franchise league. Do you have plans to transform into a full-franchise style league? Do you have plans to sell slots to other teams?

CARMAC: From the start, we were interested in creating a tournament where any team in the world can play and qualify. That’s is still an integral part of our vision for esports. An open ecosystem will produce new top players at a faster rate than a closed one. We are guaranteeing partner teams a starting slot and those are currently capped at 16, but the other slots will remain open for teams to grab through the Moutain Dew League and through good all-round performance. And we have no plans to charge an entry fee for teams.

-Given that partner teams can take part in tournaments of other organizers, will there be a conflict of interest?

CARMAC: I do not see it this way. Teams are welcome to pick whatever tournaments they wish to play in, but they’re certainly incentivized to pick ours. Whatever choices are in front of them are theirs to make.

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