StarCraft match-fixing investigation turns up bad news0 Comments
Match-fixing is a terrible part of sports culture, but has persisted throughout the decades. For the longest time, scandals only really existed with traditional sports. However, as esports have continued to grow more profitable, it only makes sense that serious issues would crop up in this circle as well. South Korea is well-known as the hotbed of StarCraft 2 play and was the scene of the latest match-fixing investigation.
Now, the Changwon Prosecutor's Office have officially indicted two professional StarCraft 2 players alongside the multitude of brokers and financial backers who were a part of an illegal gambling operation. Although the public report refrains from specifying names of the involved parties, esports fans and media have revealed the players as Lee "Life" Seung Hyun and Jung "Bbyong" Woo Yong.
It appears that both StarCraft 2 players were enticed into illegal match-fixing by people presenting themselves as "friends." These newfound friends then introduced them to the concept of match-fixing as though it was par for the course in esports. Given that this is not the first illegal happening in the esports world, these comments may ring truer than anyone wishes. Life threw two matches, thereby gaining more money (about $60,000) than he would have by actually winning the tournament. Bbyong threw one match and turned himself in despite not being part of the original investigation's scope.
What happens now? Life was given a suspended prison sentence, which means he may never need to go to jail provided he stays on the up and up. Of course, it's incredibly likely that Life and Bbyong will be banned for life from future StarCraft 2 tournaments. This probably hurts the pro players as much, if not more than, anything else.