Second chance for MDL Relegation


The MDL division:
Around one year ago, ESEA expanded the MDL division significantly as we wanted to guarantee all the best teams at the time were competing in the division. Although at the time it felt like the right move, it has created a few issues that in hindsight we believe are detrimental to its overall quality.

As a result ESEA will be move toward 18 teams for each region. This will allow each team to play everyone else in the division once for the regular season, eliminating the random element where some teams did not face one another. It will also allow you as a viewer to follow the league more easily as we can build a more stable broadcast schedule as we have all of the matchups in advance.

However, we do not feel it would be fair to force a mass exodus from the MDL without giving those teams their fighting chance. Afterall, many of the teams that have held their own in the lower tiers of MDL may well be stronger than some of the new move ups. Therefore, we will be holding a new relegation tournament at the end of each season to allow some of the lower placing MDL teams to fight for their chance to stay in the division. The very lowest placing teams in the MDL will be moved down without getting a chance in the relegation tournament as we want to encourage some movement and give new teams their chance to compete at the highest level.

Unfortunately, we have still not reached the point where every high level team is involved in the ESEA League structure. New super teams are created, and new talents will reveal themselves at external events. Therefore we are going to retain 1 invitation slot per region for the relegation tournament per season. We believe this gives us the flexibility to get new high skilled teams to their appropriate position in the ecosystem, but not at the expense of another team. An invited team will still need to prove that they deserve their spot in the MDL through the relegation tournament.

Both the European and North American relegation tournaments will be a 16 team, double elimination bracket. The Australian relegation tournament will have 8 teams.

For Season 28 to Season 29 we will be using the following structure:


  • The bottom 2 MDL teams will be relegated directly to Advanced
  • The next 7 teams from the MDL will play in the relegation tournament
  • The top 4 teams from the new Advanced division will qualify for the relegation tournament
  • There will be 4 additional slots in the relegation tournament which can be obtained through the ESL National Championship structure. More details about this will be released soon
  • There will be 1 final slot reserved for an invited team
  • The top 4 teams in the relegation tournament will qualify for Season 29 of the MDL

BPro Lineup for the match: