They have a point.
The final of the 2023 LEC Spring Playoffs saw MAD Lions reverse sweep Team BDS in a best-of-five banger on April 23. But despite such an exciting series, peak viewership took a hitand fans might know the reason behind it.
The 2023 LEC Spring Split recorded 572,391 peak viewers, according to Esports Charts. This is a significant drop compared to the 2022 LEC Spring Split, which recorded 723,061 peak viewers during its grand final.
League of Legends fans on Reddit claim the main reason behind the drop is BDS and MAD not being as popular as other teams in the region.
“They [BDS] played really well, but are probably one of the worst teams in terms of drawing in viewership,” one fan said. “Finals being played in the studio and MAD vs BDS (no shade to them but casuals care about team names) so pretty much expected,” another added.
And they make a solid point. During the 2022 LEC Spring Split, the four most popular games as far as the peak viewership goes featured G2 Esports. This year, the second, third, and fourth most-watched games also had G2 as the main stars, with other popular teams being Fnatic and KOI.
Despite this, the LEC has already had two splits this year, bringing in more than 47 million hours watched10 million more than the 2022 LEC Spring Split. The average number of viewers for last year’s Spring was around 270,000. The 2023 LEC Winter Split recorded the same number, and only this year’s Spring Split dropped by 50,000.
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To get a fairer perspective of viewership, it’s probably best to wait for the 2023 LEC Summer Split and Season Finals and compare the results. They should provide more insight, especially since the format changed this year, which could be another reason behind the viewership decline.