Doublelift Retiring From Professional League of Legends

North American Legend ADC Doublelift retires from professional play.

On December 1st, Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng announced via a video post on the social media platform X that he would be retiring from competitive League of Legends.  The announcement has fans in a state of deja vu as this will be the 3rd time that Doublelift will be stepping away from professional play. In the video, Doublelift reminisces on his career while explaining all of the reasoning behind his decision. Though he has returned from retirement in the past, he definitely seems much more at peace with the decision than in prior instances. North America is losing one of the best players the region has ever created, marking the start of a new chapter for both Doublelift and the LCS. 

Reasons For Leaving Pro Play

In the video, Doublelift lists two major contributing factors as to why he is stepping away from professional play. The first is financially for Doublelift. It makes more sense to move full-time into content creation rather than compete in the LCS at this point as teams look to cut costs and will be offering much lower-value contracts to players for the foreseeable future. Even large contracts wouldn’t be able to compete with the money that Doublelift has the potential to make via other routes. 

Even if he were to take a big contract and play for another LCS team in 2024, the team would then have their roster budget gutted, in all likelihood causing that team to field four mid to low-tier players with Doublelift in an attempt to field a team that comes in on budget. We see it all the time in traditional sports, and it’s not the way to build a winning team. Winning is the only reason Doublelift would even play in the first place. 

He says so as much in the video as he speaks on the second reason why he is retiring, which is the fact that he is at a different stage in life now. Now 30 years old, Doublelift has other life priorities that will start to take up time and energy that he used to devote to practicing in the pursuit of a world title. The inability to focus on the sole goal of competitive success means he needs to step away. If he is going to compete, he wants to be able to give it everything, and he’s not upset that he can’t the next phase of life is sure to be exciting for him.  He says he’s accomplished everything that he could’ve asked for except the allusive World Championship that all North American League of Legends fans still long for. 

Doublelift’s History

Doublelift is one of the greatest, if not the greatest, players in North American history. With 8 LCS titles to his name, multiple World Championship appearances, and a 2nd place finish at the 2019 Mid-Season Invitational, his place in the LCS record books is very much secure. 

Doublelift made a name for himself originally with the up-and-coming Counter-Logic Gaming, competing with fellow North American great Aphromoo as the “Rush Hour” bot lane. He’d be part of Team Solo Mid’s super team competing before leaving at the dawn of franchising to join the new super team being formed at Team Liquid. In 2020, he played with TSM again for a brief stint before taking a break. He’d return to play in the 2023 competitive season with 100 Thieves. Last year, the Thieves were not great, and the team missed Worlds.