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Long Form

EternalEnvy writes ‘A Secret Story’; spills Team Secret financial misconducts, says Puppey was egotistical, aggressive

Jacky “EternaLEnVy” Mao wrote a lengthy blog post on his organization Team NP‘s website, accusing his former squad Team Secret of taking 10% pay cuts out of initial agreements, delayed issuing of payments, and even using sponsorship revenue for the leisure of certain players/organization owners.

Payout Plights

In the first part of his 7400-plus-long blog post entitled A Secret StoryEternalEnvy opened up and claimed that Team Secret would often pay their promised tournament winnings too late. He also showed screenshots of his conversations with Kemal Sadikoglu (Team Secret‘s director since April 2015) that supports his claims, and that whenever he asks for an update regarding his salaries and payments — including the details of prize breakdown, etc. — they would often make many excuses. “Excuse, after excuse, without ever taking any blame,” he wrote. “Worse off, when I confronted Kemal about the Epicenter payment delays, he claims that he “doesn’t know” why and that Epicenter said they will pay on Oct 7. The lies just won’t stop.”

Jacky “EternaLEnVy” Mao.
Jacky “EternaLEnVy” Mao.

 

Envy also footnoted one of Team Secret‘s past scandals that OG‘s manager Evany Chang revealed last February 2016. The said post that former Team Secret player (Secret 1.0, to be exact) Johan “N0tail” Sundstein has not yet been paid of his tournament winnings right when Chang’s post was published.

The big problem was that players weren’t secured intricate contracts. According to EternalEnVy, they were promised a regular salary in addition to prize money but the team did not have contracts. While confirming that he was paid in random amounts intermittently, it was never clear whether the money came from either tournament winnings or their promised salaries.

When EternaLEnVy received an invoice last Sept. 8, he finally discovered that Team Secret had been taking a 10 percent cut of their winnings. This is despite of the fact that the players never knew of that there will be a 10% cut allocated for the organization.

“Not once on Secret have we ever talked about having a prize winnings cut to the organization,” EnVy said. “We have however discussed the complete opposite where we would talk about how it’s stupid to have a % prize winnings cut in DotA because of its abnormal prize pools.”

“Puppey and Kemal have always treated us to dinners at every LAN and always said “its ok I’ll pay for the food”,” EternaLEnVy recounted while he was talking about not having any idea at first where the 10% of the prize winnings go. “When Kemal came to Manila Major, he got himself an executive suite and told us we could buy whatever food we want and charge it to his room no problem. Well we did just that, and I’m sure that money came from the prize cuts in the end ;D.”

This is where he built up his frustrations about the founder of Team Secret, Clement “Puppey” Ivanov: “It was understood by everyone on the team that there would not be any prize winnings cut to the organization. Well, every player but Puppey.”

RELATED: The Case of OG.Ana vs Invictus Gaming

The Panda Predicament

EternaLEnVy recalled that though they were promised monthly salaries, it only came during the three-month stretched after the team was able to comply with their partnership with PandaTV. Take note, the initial idea by its founder Puppey revolved on Team Secret not having to depend on sponsorship. Nevertheless, it was through EternaLEnVy that Team Secret found a short-time marriage with PandaTV, one of the biggest streaming platforms available in China.

“At this point in the deal the deal was 1 million + 250k in donations for the year and if we get RTZ/Universe it would be 1.25 million + 250k in Donations. The money would be paid quarterly at the beginning of the quarter. We also talked about the number of hours to be streamed,” EternaLEnVy revealed as he was talking about what Team Secret and PandaTV agreed upon. “The final deal consisted of minimum stream hours of 30 for both RTZ/Puppey and 60 for myself. However the team all together had to stream 250 hours a month.”

Secret 3.0 wins Shanghai Major 2016.
Secret 3.0 wins Shanghai Major 2016.

 

EternaLEnVy was adamant that he kept his end of the bargain, especially when he already talked with his team on how they can work as five to comply with PandaTV’s requirements. “I actually kept streaming even after all these months but we failed our end of the deal so I never received another team hour report.” 

After a while, he “Noticed that not only did Puppey not uphold his end of the deal, but he didn’t even try. Streaming not 30 hours a month as promised but 12 hours in 3 months.”

Because the team wasn’t able to hold their end of the bargain, EternaLEnVy revealed that Panda eventually cut the deal short and only paid for the first three months. This would amount to USD 312,500. In a series of chat logs between EnVy and Sadikoglu, the director said that each player would only receive USD 8,000 per month for the three months the deal was in place. EnVy insisted that they were promised $12,000 a month, but Sadikoglu said that was only including the $250,000 year-end bonus the team would no longer receive.

“Basically the bottom line is that the first sponsor that provided money to Secret wasn’t even sought out by them. Then Puppey himself failed to uphold the streaming hours and failed the contract. Afterwards they lied about the salary and withheld 46% of the Sponsorship money for non DotA related things,” EternaLEnVy stressed. A lot of the people they supposedly paid salary too weren’t paid anyway.”

Problems with Puppey

“It’s true that he is a charismatic person with high confidence, but now I believe that he builds his confidence by looking down on everyone else,” EternaLEnVy quoted, as he was describing Puppey as egotistical and aggresive“Throughout the year he has always been lazy. At first I thought that he was just burnt out after losing TI5 and I accepted all that but eventually I realized it’s just how he is.”

Clement “Puppey” Ivanov
Clement “Puppey” Ivanov

 

EnVy went into really specific details to describe his downhill relationship with Puppey. At first, they both had a good friendship, even revealing that Puppey once said that he would like to play with EnVy forever.” However, as the team spiraled downward from their climax during the Shanghai Major into the slump that they were during TI6, so did their friendship.

EnVy also attributed Puppey‘s bad work ethic to most of Team Secret‘s bad performances during LANs. “Now if he doesn’t need to play any pubs then that’s all fine, the problem is that our captain would generally not show up to the practice room at all. This happened at every major except Shanghai Major,” he said.

“Against Vici Gaming, our match was scheduled to start at 6 PM only for him to show up at 5 PM. Everyone was like “Where’s Puppey?” There was a break day between the VG Series and the EG Series, so Puppey decided to get drunk and sleep at 6 AM. The following day, he didn’t show up to the venue at all,” EternaLEnVy added, talking about Puppey‘s unprofessional attitude during the Frankfurt Major.

There were also accounts that Puppey was verbally abusive with his teammates to go with reports that he was also exhibiting violence.

“We lost a scrim and Puppey and RTZ were arguing over some bad plays. I entered the argument because I believed that the picks were more important to talk about. Puppey disagrees and we get a bit heated,” EternaLEnVy recalled. “Before long Puppey slams the table and his keyboard’s keys fly everywhere. Once again everyone just stayed silent. Though unlike last time he followed up by pointing fingers at everyone and said ‘If you guys want to talk about who’s right or who’s wrong, why don’t we fight.'”

 

At the end of the day, EnVy stressed that Team Secret still owes him $29333 for the 10% Prize cuts and reminded the organization, “though I don’t expect that money back. Nor the 21K from the salary they promised. Hopefully they will pay me for the rest of the tournaments when they pay out (Epicenter already paid though, even though Secret claims they haven’t). I know a lot of players/coaches haven’t gotten paid yet. Please make sure you get paid!”

“I’m sure people are going to talk about verbal agreements a lot and that I’m stupid for not signing a contract. Well maybe so. Regardless I’m going to run my own org this year and ask my team to be stupid and believe in me. The Secret that was meant to be, hopefully I will be able to bring it to reality,” EternaLEnVy concluded.

Long Form

Spring Shuffle Final Rosters

The final registrations for the Kiev Major have been officially closed by Valve, and the top teams around the world have already finalized their rosters ahead of the Spring Shuffle. While it hasn’t been as chaotic as the Fall Shuffle, Spring Shuffle still brought about a few surprises, like how the past members of MVP.Phoenix have been distributed amongst other teams and the Filipino wonder Abed “Abed” Yusop resigned from Execration to join Jimmy “DeMoN” Ho in forming Team Onyx. Here are the final Spring Shuffle rosters and some of GG Network’s news coverage around them:


 

SOUTHEAST ASIA REGION

Execration

Khim “Gabbi” Villafuerte
Fernando “Nando” Mendoza
Djardel “DJ” Mampusti
Joshua “Owa” Dela Serna
Kimuel “Kim0” Rodis

TEAM FACELESS (No Changes)

Dominik “Black^” Reitmeier
Anucha “Jabz” Jirawong
Daryl “iceiceice” Koh
Toh “Xy-“ Wai Hong
Wong “NutZ” Jeng Yih

Mineski.GGNetwork (No Changes)

Ryan “Raging-_-Potato” Jay Qui
Galvin “Meracle” Kang Jian Wen
Ralph Richard “RR” Peñano
Julius “Julz” De Leon
Michael “ninjaboogie” Ross Jr.

TNC Pro Team

Marc Polo “Raven” Luis  Fausto
Carlo “Kuku” Palad
Samson Solomon “Sam_H” Enojosa Hidalgo
Timothy “Tims” Randrup
Ryo “ryOyr” Hasegawa

Tims to complete TNC roster

Warriors Gaming Unity (No Changes)

Jay Son “Ahjit” Lai
Boon Seng “NaNa” Kam
Soon Khong “KaNG” Chua
Soon Chuan “Ahfu” Tue
Ee Wooi “Wenn” Neng


 

AMERICAS REGION

Digital Chaos (No Changes)

Roman “Resolu1tion” Fominok
Aliwi “w33” Omar
David “MoonMeander” Tan
Rasmus “MiSeRy” Filipsen
Martin “Saksa” Sazdov
William “Blitz” Lee

Evil Geniuses (No Changes)

Artour “Arteezy” Babaev
Syed Sumail “SumaiL” Hassan
Saahil UNiVeRsE Arora
Ludwig “zai” Wahlberg
Andreas Franck “Cr1t” Nielsen

Team NP

Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling
Jacky “EternaLEnVy” Mao
Arif “MSS” Anwar
Avery “SVG” Silverman
Theeban “1437” Siva

Team Onyx

Mason “mason” Venne
Abed Azel “Abed” Yusop
Kanishka ‘Sam’ “BuLba” Sosale
Kim “DuBu” Doo-youn
Jimmy “DeMoN” Ho

Abed joins DeMoN to form NA-based Team Onyx


 

EUROPE

Ad Finem (No Changes)

Omar “Madara” Dabasas
Dimitris “ThuG” Plivouris
Xaris “SkyLark” Zafirou
Verros “Maybe Next Time” Apostolos
Giorgos “SsaSpartan” Giannakopoulos

Alliance (No Changes)

Jonathan “Loda” Berg
Linus “Limmp” Blomdin
Jonas “jonassomfan” Lindholm
Simon “Handsken” Haag
Jerry “EGM” Lundkvist

Cloud9 (Formerly Team Imperial)

Marcus “Ace” Hoelgaard
Jon “13abyKnight” Andersen
Mikki “HesteJoe-Rotten” Junget
Danny “Noia” Junget
Christopher “Ryze” Winther

Cloud9 signs All-Danish team Imperial

Team Liquid

Lasse “MATUMBAMAN” Urpalainen
Amer “Miracle-“ Al-Barkawi
Ivan “MinD_ContRoL” Borislavov
Maroun “GH” Merhej
Kuro “KuroKy” Salehi Takhasomi

Team Liquid signs GH

Natus Vincere

Per Anders Olsson “Pajkatt” Lille
Danil “Dendi” Ishutin
Victor “GeneRaL” Nigrini
Roman “rmN-“ Paley
Malthe “Biver” Winther

Na`Vi announces new roster, adds Pajkatt, rmn-, Biver

Feras “Feero” Hroob
Adrian “FATA-“ Trinks
Lee “Forev” Sang-don
Yazied “YapzOr” Jaradat
Adam “343” Shah

FATA- forms new team alongside Forev, 343, YapzOr

Long Form

ESL One Genting Tournament Preview

The first premiere tournament of 2017 for Dota 2 kicks off at Genting, Malaysia as ESL ONE turns to Southeast Asia for a battlefield of eight top teams this January 6-8. The hometown heroes Fnatic have been revamped, SEA stars Execration are coming into the tournament with new players, while teams such Wings Gaming and Team NP are looking for redemption in this USD 250,000 prize pooled event.

Participating Teams:

1. Fnatic (Direct Invite)

After a disappointing finish at the Boston Major Regional Qualifiers last year, Fnatic looked to revamp around the duo Mushi and Ohaiyo by releasing the Filipino players Raven and eyyou as well as the American legend DeMoN. As the first directly invited team for ESL One Genting and the hometown heroes of Malaysia, Fnatic introduces a touch of the old and the new with the addition of rookie InYourDream and veteran SEA stars YamateH and Febby.

Players:
Chai “Mushi” Yee Fung
Muhammad “inYourdreaM” Rizky
Chong Xin “Ohaiyo” Khoo
Ng “YamateH” Wei Poong
Kim “Febby” Yong-min

2. Digital Chaos (Direct Invite)

Digital Chaos have been consistent the whole of Fall season, ending it in a high note by placing 3rd-4th during the Boston Major. They have also kept their roster intact and as such will definitely be the favorites coming into this tournament.

Digital Chaos

Roman “Resolu1tion” Fominok
Aliwi “w33” Omar
David “MoonMeander” Tan
Rasmus “MiSeRy” Filipsen***
Martin “Saksa” Sazdov

3. Wings Gaming (Direct Invite)

Wings Gaming finished alright with the Boston Majors group stage, but the Single Elimination format for the Main Event wasn’t exactly favorable for the defending TI champions. They were paired against Evil Geniuses during the first round of the tournament, a team who ushered their first round exit as well. Now, they are looking for redemption with the new patch 7.00 to be played for ESL One Genting.

Chu “shadow” Zeyu
Zhou “bLink” Yang
Zhang “Faith_bian” Ruida
Zhang “y`” Yiping
Lee “iceice” Peng

4. Team NP (American Qualifier)

Team NP routed their NA rivals compLexity Gaming during the American Qualifier to punch their tickets to Malaysia. They are also heading to the Spring Season with their primary roster intact. Additionally, the team performed well during the Boston Major — finishing 5th-8th place — which makes them a legitimate threat in this tournament.

Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling
Jacky “EternaLEnVy” Mao
Arif “MSS” Anwar
Avery “SVG” Silverman
Theeban “1437” Siva

5. Newbee (Chinese Qualifier)

Newbee is another team that won’t fix that which isn’t broken: the top-tier squad will not change their roster, especially after a stellar Fall Season outing. They have been a dominant force in the region of China with many LAN wins against their fellow Chinese teams. They also still feature China’s top MMR players Sccc and kaka. 

Xu “uuu9” Han
Song “Sccc” Chun
Damien “kpii” Chok
Hu “kaka” Liangzhi
Zeng “Faith” Hongda

6. Virtus.Pro (European Qualifier)

The ESL ONE Genting regional qualifiers were done way before the Boston Major; but if the invites were drawn a month later than it did, surely Virtus.Pro would be directly invited in this event. Virtus.Pro were such a force to be reckoned with during the late part of the Fall Season, so much so that they were poised to take the Boston Major if not for the single elimination format. After their premature exit at teh tournament because of Evil Geniuses, the team kept their roster intact and could be the hungriest of the teams as the tournament sounds its horns.

Roman “RAMZES666” Kushnarev
Vladimir “No[o]ne” Minenko
Pavel “9pashaebashu” Khvastunov
Ilya “Lil” Ilyuk
Alexei “Solo” Berezin

7. Execration (Southeast Asian Qualifier)

Execration suffered a huge blow by losing its start player Abed “Abed” Yusop after the Fall Season to combo up with their inability to participate in the Boston Major (despite being directly invited) because of VISA Issues. Now, the team looks for redemption as Kim0 and DJ seeks to prove that they totally deserved that Boston Major invite by conquering the Southeast Asian region through the addition of two Filipino household names Nando and Owa.

Khim “Gabbi” Villafuerte
Fernando “Nando” Mendoza
Djardel Jicko B. “DJ” Mampusti
Joshua “Owa” Dela Serna
Kimuel “Kim0” Rodis

8. Warriors Gaming Unity (Malaysian Qualifier)

WG.Unity did nothing shabby at all during their Boston Major run: they eliminated Fnatic and Mineski.GGNetwork during the Regional Qualifiers, smashed through the Group Stage and finished 2nd place, then went on to defeat the experienced compLexity Gaming to etch a 5-8th place finish for the whole of Boston Major. They have shown that even as a new team, they are at par with the international favorites, and will definitely be a threat here in ESL One Genting.

Jay Son “Ahjit” Lai
Boon Seng “NaNa” Kam
Soon Khong “KaNG” Chua
Soon Chuan “Ahfu” Tue ***
Ee Wooi “Wenn” Neng

Long Form

Top 10 Esports Players of 2016

2016 has been a great year for esports, and there’s an extremely long list of the best performances for many esports players. Nevertheless, we’re giving you a shortlist of the top 10 players of 2016 (in no particular order) based on their achievements in their respective esports discipline:

1. Pavel “Pavel” Beltukov (Hearthstone)

2015 was gloomy for Pavel — being only one game away from entering Blizzcon of that year — but 2016 was definitely his year after winning the Hearthstone World Championship against Artem “DrHippi” Kravets. He also showed incredible comeback victories in his Blizzcon run, such as trailing 0-3 against OmegaZero to win the series 4-3 at the end of the day.

2. Byun “ByuN” Hyun Woo (Starcraft II)

Legacy of the Void, a lot of updates, definitely a lot more competition: all these made the WCS 2016 for Starcraft a really huge tournament. After a grueling grind throughout 2016, it was the Terran player ByuN who was able to retain the fortitude and take the Starcraft 2 World Championship out of Blizzcon 2016.

3. Wolfe Glick (Pokemon VGC)

In the meta bombarded by usage of restricted primal legendary Pokemon that of Groudon and Kyogre, Wolfe Glick redeemed himself by introducing something new: in his World Championship run for the Pokemon Video Game Competition (VGC), he introduced the idea of having Fakeout pressure every round by cycling around Hitmontop and Raichu.

4. Oleksandr “s1mple” Kostyliev (Counter Strike: Global Offensive)

s1mple showed 2016 a ton of highlight plays and also joined Natus Vincere to consequently win ESL One New York in the middle of the year. Oh, he also introduced throwing AWPs in the air as decoy.

5. Marcelo “coldzera” David (Counter Strike: Global Offensive)

coldzera was extremely instrumental in SK Gaming‘s ESL ONE Cologne championship last July, and all of SK Gaming‘s Finals appearances in other CS:GO tournaments this year. With his top-tier performance in 2016, The Game Awards inevitably awarded him as Best Player of 2016

6. Song “Smeb” Kyung-ho (League of Legends)

There were many dominant players for League of Legends, but when it comes to determining the best top laner, it’s definitely Smeb. The way he performed for ROX Tigers was nothing short of phenomenal throughout 2016.

7. Lee “Faker” Sang-hyeok

If there’s just one household name you want for professional League of Legends, there wouldn’t be a question at all. Faker has been the best player for LoL for a long time now, and most especially around 2016 where his team SK Telecom T1 finished as the World Champions of League of Legends.

8. Jesse “JerAx” Vainikka (Dota 2)

JerAx, throughout the year, has been the best and most electric support in all of Dota 2. He then joined the handicapped OG (who lost three core players) and still managed to win the Boston Major this December.

9. Tal “Fly” Aizik and Johan “N0tail” Sundstein (Dota 2)

Fly and N0tail — the duo that brought to life the legendary Dota 2 team, OG — may not be the most mechanically skilled players, but they do know how to run a team. In their first iteration, they won two Valve-sponsored events. Unfortunately, they lost three of their core members after their TI6 run, but they went on to scout and draft other players to take their third Major championship. No one has ever done that in the history of Dota 2.

10. Amer “Miracle-“ Al-Barkawi (Dota 2)

Arguably the best player of 2016, Miracle- was the first to have ever reached 9000 Matchmaking Rating points and already clinched two Valve-sponsored tournament championships in his first year of competitive play. He also received the “Rookie of the Year” recognition from the Esports Industry Awards.

 

Who are your top 10 players of 2016?


 

Follow this writer through @caisamyvez