NRG terminates League of Legends team's contracts

NRG Esports is disbanding its League of Legends team after it was relegated to the Challenger Series. Provided by Riot Games

Following relegation from the North American League Championship Series, NRG Esports has terminated the contracts with its entire League of Legends lineup, making each member a free agent for the upcoming season, sources close to the former team members and the organization tell ESPN.

The termination of Diego "Quas" Ruiz, Lucas "Santorin" Tao Kilmer Larsen, Lee "GBM" Chang-seok, Oh "Ohq" Gyu-min and Alan "KiWiKiD" Nguyen was prompted by a clause in each member's contract with the organization, which sources say provides for lawful termination should the team be relegated from the LCS. That clause was triggered following the team's loss at the hands of Echo Fox on Sunday, prompting the demotion of NRG to the secondary league, the Challenger Series.

Most of the former NRG players have begun their roads home, with GBM and Ohq returning to Korea with NRG manager Barry "KoreanEdelweiss" Lee, as tweeted by Lee.

While no future teams are set in stone for any of the players, sources say that Santorin is in demand with other teams after one of his best splits of competition yet. Santorin told ESPN after being released that he will evaluate all competitive offers, both in North America and Europe, but desires to remain in North America if possible.

NRG Esports declined to comment.