‘Overwatch’ Pro Gamers Banned For ‘Flirting’? Is This A New Rule in Pro Gaming?

Professional eSports have gotten a lot more serious.

Two Overwatch pro gamers from South Korean team Lunatic-Hai were banned after news of them “flirting” with multiple female fans came to light. Lee Tae Jun and Geum “Dean” Dong-geun were suspended for two months and were not allowed to join in OGN’s Apex Season 2, one of the world’s biggest Overwatch competitions, according to a Reddit post.

The thread focusing on “Competitive ‘Overwatch'” noted that Leetajun and Dean had been “double-crossing” female fans for some time now. These fans had come to Lunatic Hai two weeks ago showing their evidence to the pro team. The female fans reportedly had proof of conversations with Leetajun and Dean, not knowing that they had other affairs as well.

At first, the chat conversations were thought of as pranks by haters, but after further investigation, it was found out to be true. They even used different social media channels like Kakaotalk, Twitter, and more. Aside from chats, the fans and the two pro gamers even exchanged photos.

Leetajun denied the allegations, but when the evidence piled up, he had no other choice but to admit everything with a statement.

“First of all, I would like to deeply apologize to the people that have exchanged messages with me. My adolecent actions have caused deep hurt, and I truly apologize for them.

“I would also like to apologize to my fans who are hurt by my actions. I know my fans have genuinely cheered for me, so no words can describe how sorry I am. I am very sorry.

“I’ve learned a lot from this incident. I am going to take time off to reflect and think deeply about this. I promise that this will never happen again and will be cautious with my actions,” Leetajun wrote.

Gaming Suspension in South Korea [Image by: iStock/PatrikSlezak]

Apparently, it was not the mere act of dating that got Leetajun and Dean suspended, but the fact that, as pro gamers, they were tricking their fans.

Lunatic Hai’s fans were “extremely shocked at the scandal.” With rumors about the South Korean teams cheating, this is just another unnecessary story they do not need to go public.

The original apology was written in Korean.

“Both of them have done something they should not be doing as eSports players and we have taken steps to prevent recurrence,” according to the English translation of Lunatic Hai’s apology.

According to Inven, the female fans found out about the affairs in the message boards. When you have a relationship with an elite pro gamer, it must be something you should be proud of. And this was how it all started.

An anonymous post on the Inven community board noted that this female user is one of the pro gamers’ girlfriend. It was latter revealed that the pro gamer she was dating was Leetajun. When his name became public, there were at least three other women who dismissed the initial claim saying they were the gamer’s girlfriend.

Blizzard Pro Gamer Suspended [Image by: iStock/PatrikSlezak ]
Blizzard Pro Gamer Suspended [Image by: iStock/PatrikSlezak ]

One by one, other stories on Dean’s relationships were revealed as well. Dean’s approach was even more aggressive, as he was reportedly seeking to have sex with women and some minors.

“It’s an action that was not appropriate as a professional gamer and I am embarrassed and regretting this as I knew contacting fans through social media continuously does not look good for the staff and teammates,” Dean wrote.

“I always thought that I shouldn’t do this, and is not appropriate for my position. But I couldn’t hold myself back and resulted in this. I deeply regret contacting fans privately several times and sorry about my actions causing harm to the fans who love us and my teammates.”

Many of these women felt cheated and surprised with all of the information they were getting.

The Korean Overwatch community expresses their deepest regret regarding the incident. They aim to maintain their professional status in the world arena and move forward with the APEX in the coming months as they leave the issue behind.

[Featured Image by iStock/filistimlyanin]