EG FRAG rosters spark controversy
Yesterday, Evil Geniuses' team manager, Matt "Sunshine", posted a tweet announcing that the organization would be sending two teams to the upcoming Fragadelphia 17 event. Dust2.us was able to report that the teams included the former Party Astronauts and Carpe Diem rosters.
While many were excited about the Seattle-based organization sending two rosters, others were hesitant to see multiple teams come from one org. In a tweet, ATK's coach Daniel "sprayxd" Kogan posited the question of how it was allowed for Evil Geniuses to send multiple teams to Fragadelphia event by raising the conflict of interest issue - what happened if the EG.PA roster played the EG.CD roster? Several community figures commented on the situation with a wide range of opinions, some agreeing with the coach while others saw no issue.
Responding to sprayxd's tweet, the coach of EG's Party Astronauts squad, Joe "Muenster" Lima, claimed that the multiple teams were discussed with Fragadelphia staff "extensively" and that there is no issue as there will be "absolutely zero chance of any foul play." sprayxd pushed back, more so at Fragadelphia for allowing them to participate because of the conflict of interest. Muenster responded that sprayxd was "bashing us by implying we would fix games if told by our org" and said that "bringing all this up is just disrespectful."
However, sprayxd was not the only one from the ATK roster to raise questions about competitive integrity. Michael "Swisher" Schmid argued that "Two teams from the same org does not make sense under a competitive integrity standpoint". However, Fragadelphia does have a history of multiple teams from a single organization being at the event. During Fragadelphia 11, Counter Logic Gaming sent their academy roster as well as their women's roster. In fact, the two rosters faced off in the opening round of the upper bracket, with CLG Academy claiming a 2-0 victory.
Others have pointed out that with Fragadelphia 17 becoming a much more serious event compared to its predecessors, given the number of international teams, production quality, prestige, and prize pool, the issue of COI should be raised. It is a tough issue for the Fragadelphia organizers to grapple with as they deal with growing out from a BYOC LAN to an internationally recognized event with a $100,000 prize pool.