|2020 Rivals League|
Starting in August 2020, Magic: the Gathering’s Organized Play calendar moved away from seasons that follow the calendar year (the 2019 season) back to seasons that are split over multiple calendar years (the 2020–2021 season). But the 2019 season ended in December 2019, so in order to fill the gap between then and the beginning of the 2020–2021 season, the Magic Pro League held a shortened seven-month season. The MPL was reduced to a 24-player league with players able to earn up to $50,000 in appearance fees in addition to prizes earned at tournaments.
At the same time, the Rivals League was introduced, which essentially is a second division for the Esports. The Rivals League is a talent-development league that feeds the MPL. Rivals will make it into the MPL either through sustained success over the course of a season or through a new tournament called the MPL Gauntlet.
Because the 2020 partial season had fewer events, both MPL and Rivals players would make less than a full season. Rivals players could earn up to $15,000 in appearance fees, in addition to any prize money earned. Unlike the 2019 season, the 2020 Magic Pro League didn't have any kind of league play structure. Instead, members of both the Magic Pro and Rivals Leagues would compete for their places in the 2020–21 season by earning Player Points at Players Tours and Mythic Points at Mythic Invitationals, Mythic Qualifier Weekends, and Mythic Point Challenges.
The COVID-19 outbreak in January resulted in preventative measures taken in March. A large swath of the Grand Prix event schedule was canceled, and the Players Tour Finals Houston and the May Invitational were also canceled. By April, it was clear that further events were not safely feasible to hold, and Wizards wrote off the entire season as not salvageable. While some large events later in the year would be prospectively held, the events would not pay out points for League positions. Current Rivals and MPL players would hold their positions, with Tabletop players addedn from the top 4 players of the three Players Tour Series 1. The Arena ranked players with Mythic points would be decided after the season's Arena challenges.
As 2020 Partial Season Rivals maintained their league status for next season, those players were no longer be eligible to play in the three remaining Mythic Point awarding events (the April 4 Mythic Point Challenge, May 16 Mythic Qualifier Core Set 2021, and June 20 Mythic Qualifier Core Set 2021). All Rivals were to be invited to the October 22-25 Mythic Invitational – Zendikar Rising, which was the event these outstanding qualifiers would feed. This was later replaced by the Mythic Invitational 2020 (August 28–30, 2020). Other events, including the Players Tour Finals Minneapolis (July 10-12) and Mythic Invitational – Core 2021 (July 23-26), were cancelled.
For the shortened 2020 season, the Rivals League roster features 32 players. Participants were 2019's bottom twelve MPL players based on Mythic Points. The eight 2019 MTG Arena and eight tabletop highest ranked Challengers who were not invited to the MPL were also eligible. Their rankings were based on Mythic Points earned in the appropriate types of events. Four participants to the Rivals League were invited at Wizards of the Coast's discretion. This became six invites when two qualified people declined to participate.
|Nationality||Name||MTG Arena handle||Qualification||Players
|Lucas Esper Berthoud||BERTU||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||26|
|Kai Budde||KAI||Top 8 Arena Challenger||5||5||17|
|Stanislav Cifka||STANCIFKA||Top 8 Arena Challenger||6||6||15|
|Louis Deltour||LWIDELTOUW||Top 8 Tabletop Challenger||8||8||11|
|Kenji Egashira||NUMMY||Top 8 Arena Challenger||3||3||21|
|Jessica Estephan||JESSICA||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||8||8||11|
|Eric Froehlich||EFRO||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||5||3||8||11|
|Simon Görtzen||SIMONGOERTZEN||Top 8 Arena Challenger||26|
|Christian Hauck||CHRHAUCK||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||3||3||21|
|Alexander Hayne||HAYNE||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||8||3||11||09|
|Eli Kassis||GENERALMYTHIC||Top 8 Tabletop Challenger||5||4||9||10|
|Grzegorz Kowalski||URLICH||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||15||2||17||05|
|Matias Leveratto||LEVUNGA||Top 8 Arena Challenger||26|
|No Ah Ma||MODIFIED USERNAME||Top 8 Tabletop Challenger||8||4||12||06|
|Janne Mikkonen||SAVJZ||Bottom 12 MPL 2019 (declined)||-||-||-||-|
|Théo Moutier||SWIFTH||Top 8 Arena Challenger||26|
|Matt Nass||MATTHEWLNASS||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||12||12||24||01|
|Gregory Orange||CITR||Top 8 Arena Challenger||12||12||06|
|Sebastian Pozzo||SEBASTIANPOZZO||Top 8 Tabletop Challenger||12||12||06|
|John Rolf||JROLFMTG||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||26|
|Luis Salvatto||LUISSALVATTO||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||2||2||23|
|Thoralf Severin||TOFFEL||Top 8 Tabletop Challenger||15||4||19||03|
|Mike Sigrist||SIGGY||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||15||8||23||02|
|Miguel da Cruz Simões||EDMVYRUS||Top 8 Arena Challenger||5||5||17|
|Matt Sperling||SPERLING||Top 8 Tabletop Challenger||2||2||23|
|Ben Stark||BENS_MTG||Bottom 12 MPL 2019||8||8||11|
|Luis Scott-Vargas||LSV||Top 8 Tabletop Challenger||12||6||18||04|
|Peter Yeh||CHIH-CHEH||Top 8 Tabletop Challenger (declined)||-||-||-||-|
|Yoshihiko Ikawa||WANDERINGONES||Discretionary Invitation
13th in challengers race
|Bernardo Santos||BERNARDOCSSA||Discretionary Invitation
14th in challengers race
|Beatriz Grancha||ALIADESCHAIN||Discretionary Invitation
20th at Mythic Championship VII
|Allison Warfield||MEEBO||Discretionary Invitation
14th at Mythic Championship VII
|Eli Loveman||NEWPLAYER1||Discretionary Invitation
Mythic Championship II Winner
|Emma Handy||EM_TEEGEE||Discretionary Invitation
70th at Mythic Championship VI SCG Commentator
- Elaine Chase (August 14, 2019). "The Future of Magic Esports". Magic Esports.
- David McCoy (August 14, 2019). "The Magic Pro League Will Have a Partial 8-Month Season to Start 2020". Hipsters of the Coast.
- David McCoy (January 28, 2020). "Wizards Announces the 2020 Magic Rivals League Roster". Hipsters of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast (March 12, 2020). "Changes to Magic's Competitive Season and Event Schedule.". magicthegathering.com. Wizards of the Coast.
- Wizards of the Coast (April 1, 2020). "Esports Update: MPL, Rivals, and Competitor 2020 Partial Season Changes". Magic.gg.
- Wizards of the Coast (December 08, 2019). "The 2020 Partial Season Magic Rivals League Invitations". Magic Esports.
- David McCoy (January 6, 2020). "Savjz Declines His Invitation to the Magic Rivals League". Hipsters of the Coast.