Our History

learn more about the History of  Northern Lions Esports


In October 2017, Michel “HugMePlease” Waanders founded Stenden NHL Esports, also known as the Stenden NHL Lionkings. A month after the launch, the organization already had 50 members, proving the interest of students in professional gaming. This esports organization would represent Stenden NHL and participate in the Dutch College League, the highest level of play for college-based League of Legends teams, after securing a spot directly via an open qualifier for the DCL with a win record of 16-1. The Lionkings will participate in the 2018 season and be active in the Dutch Premier League, ending the season in 4th. Highlight of the season was a show match where the Lionkings would play with and against the professional players from the Unicorns of Love, which the Lionkings would eventually lose after a dominant performance from professional midlaner Exile.


After the season, the organization would switch its main focus towards education, resulting in a split from Stenden NHL and rebranding towards Northern Lions Esports. Although no official connection remained, a collaboration between Northern Lions and Stenden NHL resulted in the opening of the gaming facility in March 2019, forming the basis to build a growing community with students and gamers from across the globe we still have today.

Although the Covid-19 pandemic disturbed our daily activities, it wouldn’t stop us from connecting with each other. In May, Northern Lions Esports will host the Quarantine games: Tournaments on League of Legends, Rocket League and Counterstrike: Global, with teams competing for a prize pool. Since the summer holiday of 2020, we’ve been hard at work on a complete overhaul of the organization. More people, a brand new gaming facility and a bigger identity overall. For more information about our future, look here

October 2017


In October 2017 Michel “HugMePlease” Waanders founded Stenden NHL Esports, also known as the Stenden NHL Lionkings.



Rebranding for Stenden NHL Esports to Northern Lions Esports

November 2021

Official opening New Esports facility

Official opening New Esports facility at François HaverSchmidtwei 3, Leeuwarden

February 2022

Reopening after lockdown

We are open to everyone again after the covid lockdown.

February 2022

LowLandLions x Northern Lions

The North and South roar together. LowLandLions has teamed up with Northern Lions eSports to bring local talent back to the highest level in League of Legends.