Professional Overwatch player Felix “xQc” Lengyel has been suspended from four games and fined $2,000 USD for insulting a former combatant, Austin “Muma” Wilmot.
The insult came while xQc was doing a live stream sometime after a competitive match. The previous match had taken place between the “Dallas Fuel” (the team for which xQc plays), and the “Houston Outlaws” (Muma’s team).
The Houston Outlaws had won a match against the Dallas Fuel in a game that resulted in a 4-0 sweep on Thursday. “Muma” took a dig at “xQc” after the victory by using xQc’s own catch-phrase “rolled and smoked”. Notably, xQc did not participate in the game, however.
Lengyel later had gone on his private stream and addressed the dig Muma made against his team while dishing out some insults of his own.
xQc showed signs that he had crossed a line during the stream. Muma is an openly homosexual player, which seems to be a factor in this whole ordeal. xQc later addressed the remarks he had made by issuing an apology on the social media platform, Twitter.
I didn’t say what I said on stream with malicious intent, I legit did not compute the whole thing before. I speak too fast, everything happens too fast. Everything is so fking trash lately. Hope I can turn this into something good, sorry @Muma :/
— xQc (@xQc) January 19, 2018
Additionally, his team, Dallas Fuel administered punishment by benching xQc for a match. This is evident by a statement made on their Twitter account.
The team will be taking disciplinary action related to recent comments made by Felix “@xQc” Lengyel. xQc will not be active for tonight’s match. Additional details forthcoming.
— Dallas Fuel (@DallasFuel) January 19, 2018
However, since this involves a gay man, various other esports commentators have been issuing their own statements about the exchange. Esports writer, Rod Breslau rallied for disciplinary action against xQc.
xQc should not get a pass for making derogatory comments to the only openly gay player in #OverwatchLeague. This goes for both public ridicule and direct punishment that should come from Blizzard and the Dallas Fuel organization.
— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) January 19, 2018
Additionally, an Overwatch League analyst, Christopher “MonteCristo” Mykkles also addressed xQc’s remarks, by claiming that xQc’s statments were dumb, rather than malicious.
I think the only thing to say tonight is that I would like to believe when pro players say something dumb that they are making foolhardy mistakes rather than being intentionally malicious.
Young people in the spotlight will make mistakes and learn.
— MonteCristo (@MonteCristo) January 19, 2018
However, this led to an argument between MonteCristo and the director of Twitch Studios, Marcus “djWHTEAT” Graham. Who claimed that the statement was not acceptable under any circumstances. He also encouraged the use of bans and suspensions against xQc.
I read this as: it’s ok to be racist and disrespectful before you are 25. IT’S NOT OK. It is ABSOLUTELY not OK. https://t.co/yxB4GSTLL9
— djWHEAT (@djWHEAT) January 19, 2018
Eventually, the Overwatch League had decided to issue a suspension and fine against xQc. The suspension would last four matches and the fine would carry the amount of $2,000 USD. The statement mentioned that xQc had made a violation of the Overwatch League Code of Conduct during his stream on Thursday. However, the Overwatch Code of Conduct is not available for viewing online. Since writing this, I’ve sent a message to Blizzard’s Associate PR Manager for the Overwatch League, Kevin Scarpati requesting a copy for viewing.
Additional footage can be viewed for further context at CurseEntertainment on YouTube.
sources: twitter.com, overwatchleague.com, blizzard.com, pcgamer.com, twitch.tv