Scouting grounds is a Riot Games organised event, inviting a selection of players per role from the North American Challenger ladder to head to the LCS studio and get coached by pro players and coaches. The purpose of the bootcamp, is to discover new a wealth of young talent for the NA LCS. However, in order to join the Scouting Grounds scheme, players must first pass a behavioural test, allow their social media to be scrutinised and sadly, that’s where the idea falls apart.
Everything was running smoothly, competitors were grinding solo queue up until the very last minute, the shift in ranks at the top of the table on the last day of the season were turbulent down to the last moment. The problem for Riot’s inititative started when the best talent NA soloqueue has to showcase right now, Tarzaned (or Tardzaned as he prefers to be known) was eliminated from contention.
Tarzaned is a jungler, with no competitive experience, though he maintained the number 1 spot on North America’s Challenger ladder for a fair few months. Tarzaned was banned for boosting at the start of 2016 season, but his real demon was his rancid toxicity. Tarzaned has consistently displayed toxic behaviour in and out of game and despite destroying world championship competitors in the jungle, he was unable to participate in the scouting grounds due to a competitive ruling handed to him from eSports Coordinator, Riot Tiza.
Tarzaned however, was a persona that many people hated in NA challenger ladder, not because of his skills but because of his attitude especially when destroying his enemy. A fellow high rank jungler (that made it to Scouting grounds), SilasKroeger apparently messaged the eSports coordinator personally to ensure Tarzaned didn’t participate in the Riot held event.
Team Ocean (supported and coached by Team Liquid) won the scouting grounds event, where hopefully, the players will be absorbed by big organisations due to their potential talent.
Congrats, Team Ocean on your scouting grounds win!
Left to right: MaxTrobo, Wiggily, GodRJ, Vex, and Whyin. pic.twitter.com/W8INeR8Yvt
— Emily Rand (@leagueofemily) November 19, 2016
Team Liquid’s bad-boy, Joshua “Dardoch” Hartnett was vocal throughout the entire event, pointing out the players who, according to him performed well… or in some cases didn’t perform at all.
Rjsdndgod is the next faker but he's starting off as #NASG champion ?
— Joshua Hartnett (@Dardochlol) November 19, 2016
Team Ocean and their players are a talented group of solo queue players but with no competitive experience at all, can they stand up to the level of the LCS or will the whole event end up being a waste of time for everyone involved? Tarzaned on the other hand has proven himself to have the quality, said he will reform and yet has been denied the opportunity to earn himself a spot in the LCS.
It should be up to the LCS teams themselves to decide whether they want to take the risk of a talent with a tainted past, not Riot. Hopefully Tarzaned will get another chance in the near future to prove he has what it takes to compete at the highest level.