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Griffin Disbands League of Legends Teams

Mike Plant

Korean esports organization Team Griffin has announced that they have disbanded their League of Legends team. Griffin did not apply for one of the 10 spots in the new LCK franchise system.

Griffin disbands lol

Griffin’s run in the LCK ended with a defeat to SANDBOX Gaming in the promotion series. (Photo courtesy Riot Games - LCK)

Griffin first entered relevance in 2018. After a perfect 14-0 Spring Split in Challengers Korea, Griffin beat MVP 3-1 to promote to the LCK. They were an immediate factor, going 13-5 in the regular season before losing 3-2 to KT Rolster in the Summer Finals. Griffin also fell just short of advancing to Worlds, losing 3-2 to Gen.G in the Regional Finals.

Griffin then looked like a potential powerhouse in 2019, winning both the Spring and Summer regular seasons. Unfortunately, they fell short in both Finals, twice losing to SK Telecom T1. Griffin then parted ways with head coach Kim “cvMax” Dae-ho right before Worlds. Griffin made it out of groups in their first appearance before losing to Invictus Gaming 3-1 in the quarterfinals.

Despite the promising start to their tenure, it would all fall apart for Griffin at the end of 2019. cvMax’s departure was just the first domino to fall. Top laner Choi “Sword” Sung-won accused cvMax of misconduct during his tenure, while cvMax spoke about Griffin’s manipulation of jungler Seo “Kanavi” Jin-hyeok’s contract. With such allegations of mistreatment from both the coaching staff and management team, Griffin allowed all of their players to be released from their contracts.

cvMax, mid laner Jeong “Chovy” Ji-hoon, support Son “Lehends” Si-woo, and top laner Choi “Doran” Hyeon-joon all chose to leave, with Chovy and Doran joining cvMax at DRX. Sword, jungler Lee “Tarzan” Seung-yong, and ADC Park “Viper” Do-hyeon stuck it out with Griffin in 2020 Spring, but the team was not the same. Griffin went 5-13, finishing last in the LCK. They then demoted to the CK after losing 2-0 to SANDBOX in the promotion series.

Following such scandals and now left with a weak team, Griffin seemingly knew they had little chance of becoming a permanent member of the LCK. Griffin allowed the rest of their main roster to leave after 2020 Spring, fielding a ghost lineup for 2020 Summer. Griffin finished 5-9 in the CK in their final competition.   

From a top contender to a disbanded team in the blink of an eye, Griffin forever close the chapter on their tumultuous year.