In a surprising turn of events, Riot Games has announced the disqualification of North American Valorant team The Guard from participating in the 2024 edition of the VCT Americas League. The disqualification is a result of The Guard failing to meet the deadline to sign the Team Participation Agreement with Riot Games, as stated in the recent release.
An update regarding the teams participating in VCT Americas 2024. pic.twitter.com/YCYoZSPpcL
— VALORANT Esports NA (@valesports_na) August 29, 2023
The Guard had secured their spot in VCT Americas 2024 after a victorious performance in the Ascension tournament’s Grand Final against M80 in July 2023. This achievement secured their place in tier-1 Valorant esports for both the 2024 and 2025 seasons.
Unexpected Disqualification from VCT Americas 2024
However, the latest announcement has shattered these expectations, revealing that The Guard will not be participating in the 2024 season of VCT Americas. The organization’s status for the subsequent 2025 season remains uncertain.
The Guard, a Los Angeles-based esports organization with successful teams in Valorant, Call of Duty League, and Overwatch League, had garnered a reputation as one of North America’s favourites after an impressive showing in 2022.
This unexpected disqualification has prompted speculation within the community, with some suggesting financial challenges as a potential reason. Earlier reports of The Guard letting go of its entire staff this year raised concerns about the organization’s financial stability. Streamer Disguised Toast has reportedly offered to buy out the players’ contracts, aiming to provide The Guard with an opportunity to participate in VCT 2024 alongside the region’s top teams and players.
i might be broke but i'd sign these players if it means them getting to play in franchising and keep the spot they earned
— DSG Toast (@DisguisedToast) August 29, 2023
Unanswered Questions and Selection Process
The announcement has left many in the community perplexed, wondering about the specific commitments outlined in the Team Participation Agreement that might have led The Guard to this decision. Additionally, the decision to disqualify The Guard while not considering M80, the second-place finisher in the Americas Ascension tournament, has raised questions about the selection process.
VCT Americas 2024 Continues
With The Guard’s disqualification, the VCT Americas 2024 season proceeds with its pre-existing set of 10 teams. This unforeseen development has left fans disappointed and eager for more information on the circumstances surrounding The Guard’s disqualification and the implications for the organization’s future in the competitive Valorant scene.