Another North American organization have yet to pay their players
Five players and the coach from Iceberg, a competitive esports organization with teams in Counter Strike: Global Offensive and Dota 2, have revealed that the organization has failed to pay them their salaries since late January.
A tweet from Tom "tconnors" Connors late Wednesday evening alleges that the organization owes each player upwards of $3,000 CAD per player, with sources informing Dust2.us that their coach Michael "agM" Abood is also owed $1,475 CAD for his duties.
I'd like to thank @IcebergEsports for failing to pay out $3k+ CAD per player then blocking us all on everything. This screws me for the next 2 months and is the last time I ever rely on a non-pro org to pay my bills. Huge mistake :( pic.twitter.com/hTqMPwr40h— Tom Connors | TI (@tconnorscs) March 1, 2018
Sources close to the team can corroborate these numbers, with approximately $13,475 CAD being owed between the six individuals.
According to the players, the organization had the roster on trial for the previous MDL season, and didn't actually sign the roster until December of 2017. Each player was to receive $1,000 CAD in salary per month, with agM receiving a coach's salary of $650. With one player receiving their contract later than the others, only four players saw payment for December — receiving only half of what they were owed for the month. Another half payment followed for the first half of January, but it was here that the organization began to delay payments and present excuses for late reimbursment.
The players and other sources close to the organization spoke of Iceberg's owner, Daniel "Daname" Escott, who insisted that he was unable to pay the team because they had investors who had backed out, and that they were in the process of securing sponsors to displace the lost cash injection. This was told to the players the day after Iceberg's signing of a Dota 2 roster on January 30th. Sources also inform Dust2.us that the players on the Dota 2 roster have yet to receive any salary payment from Iceberg.
It was soon after that the organization's CS:GO manager, Shelby "d1sfigured" Parks, informed the players that Iceberg would go under if they didn't receive investments, only to tell the players later in the week that the team would be getting bought out and their owed salaries finally paid. The caveat was that the players would have to wait until the end of February due to contract clauses, receiving no money in the interim. One player reached out to Daname during this period in hopes of a small figure for their monthly expenses, and was greeted with a reply of "my best advice would be to find a job man."
The saga was finally brought to a close today when Warren "hades" Rettich was informed that none of the players would receive payment, forcing the team to go public with the organization's methods. The players attempted to reach out to other Iceberg employees who may have experienced similar situations, but found themselves promptly blocked and banned from various Iceberg social media platforms.
Ironically, Iceberg's mission statement on their website says that they aim to "set a new standard of player care in the industry", and pride themselves that "if [they] take care of [their] players, they will always do their best."
The former Iceberg players currently sit at 7-4 in the MDL standings, putting them in playoffs contention should they continue to put up similar results. With six matches left in the season, the team will have a chance to make it to the playoffs, and in turn give themselves the opportunity and exposure to be picked up by a new organization.