Welcome back to SportsGamer, North America!
With the NHL esports competitive season ramping up, the time has now come for us to return to North American soil and launch one of the most exciting leagues of the year. The NACL is making a return for its third season, now following a similar system to that of the ECL with a Winter and a Spring season over the course of a competitive year. A lot of time has passed since the last NACL season, when Vertigo hoisted the cup back in May of 2020. Since then, a lot has changed and new contenders have emerged, who will be the ones to rise to the top and play their way to the fabled World Finals?
NACL '23 Winter will be completely free-to-play and no license will be required to participate. The Winter season will be played in one division featuring crossplay and cross-console availability. Please note that the entire team must be on the same console. Leading into the Spring season we are looking to implement a divisional system similar to that of the ECL and gradually monetize the league. NACL Winter will serve as a ranking basis for future tournaments and seasons, so this is where teams can make their mark and solidify their position in the divisional ladder.
For the most effective communication over the course of the season, and quick access to all news related to the league, join the SportsGamer Discord here! Remember to assign a NACL role for yourself to be able to access the league channel.
Introducing the biggest combined prize pool in NHL 6v6 history
NACL '23 Winter will be featuring one division with a prize pool of 6 000€, with an additional 6 000€ up for grabs in the World Finals. In total, the ECL, NACL and the World Finals feature a prize pool of 36 000€ (just under 37 000 USD with today's exchange rates), which is the highest combined prize pool in NHL 6v6 history!
The NACL is our North American counterpart to our longest running league - the ECL. With two seasons of experience in the North American market in the rearview, we have taken a step back and evaluated our successes and shortcomings for a new and improved approach. NACL offers 6v6 competition for both Xbox and PlayStation teams in order to secure a possibility for everyone to participate.
Regional restrictions: NACL is a North American tournament format, however, we do not necessarily exclude players located in Europe, or Asia. A North American server will always be used. In case of severe connection issues, we reserve the right to exclude teams or players. Teams must be based in North America.
Individual requirements: Each player needs to have an account at SportsGamer.GG and create their personal player card.
Rules: The NACL ‘23 Winter ruleset will follow the same foundation as the ECL. The updated rulebook will be available before the season.
- World Finals Qualifier: The winner of the NACL will face off against the European champions in Helsinki, Finland! Flights from an international airport and lodging will be covered for the six members who will be playing. Please have your passport ready should your team qualify. (If a player on the qualifying team is under the age of 18, they will be required to bring along a parent/guardian at their own expense)
NACL '23 Winter will be played in one division open for both PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X|S teams. In the regular season teams will be split into groups, where every team faces each other in a double-header. The amount of groups and how many teams will qualify for the playoffs will depend on number of signups. Playoffs will be best-of-seven series in every round.
The Challenge System (top seeds choose their opponents) will be used for the first round of the Playoffs. In case the Playoff format is set up where the top seeds receive a first round bye, the Challenge System will be used in the second round instead.
NACL features default gamedays on Thursday and Sunday with two weekly broadcasts on the SportsGamer Twitch-channel over the course of the entire season. Teams that will not be featured in a broadcast on any given week will be allowed to flexibly reschedule their games in cooperation with their opponents.
Sign-up period: 11.24.2022-12.8.2022
Regular season: 12.11.2022-1.5.2023
World Finals: 2.25.2023 @ Assembly Winter 2023 in Helsinki, Finland
- Regular Season broadcasts will begin at 10pm EST.
- On Thursdays one 9pm featured matchup will be moved to 11pm for broadcast purposes.
- All Playoff rounds will be played best-of-7.
- NACL Playoff broadcasts will begin at 9pm EST.
*While sign-ups are separate for both consoles, NACL '23 Winter will be played cross-platform.
As the first ever World Finals in the history of 6v6 NHL esports, we ask that you support the event as best you can on social media, Twitch broadcasts, and however else you can so we all can do our best and make this become an even bigger event in the future! Please be sure to tag @SportsGamerGG and use the #NACL23Winter, #RoadToHelsinki and #SGWorldFinalsin all your social media communication.