Leaked audio implicates former Rebirth and Russian Canadians players in match-fixing
In late 2020, Dust2.us obtained an audio recording of current and former Rebirth/ChocoCheck players Sebastian "retchy" Tropiano, Kevin "4pack" Przypasniak, and Carson "nosraC" O’Reilly discussing fixing a match against Russian Canadians on October 30th while still with Rebirth. The presence of retchy, 4pack, and nosraC in the recording, which was received from an anonymous person, has been verified by multiple Premier players.
In the recording, for which a transcript can be found below, retchy and 4pack begin by discussing fixing one of their final matches of ESEA MDL Season 35 against Incognito. Shortly after they begin discussing the aforementioned match, 4pack gets irate, telling retchy that "the fact that (he) didn't even say anything about the Russian Canadians game" is "even more fucked." Note that the match in question was never played and was instead forfeited by Russian Canadians. When questioned about what he means, 4pack states that he had just been talking the previous day about winning one of their matches so that they would be drawn against Mythic in Season 35 playoffs.
In response, retchy explains that Rebirth had been "planning to lose [the game against Russian Canadians] for the last five days" as it "makes the most sense" to throw out of "every game in MDL." He also explained it would be an easy feat with the Russian Canadians in-game leader, Alex "vek" Voynov, "on radar" and 4pack off the server, and as such would look "guaranteed real."
By "on radar", the players mean that someone from the opposing team would stream their radar via Discord to a player on Rebirth, allowing the team to make "misreads" of situations and play off information from the opposing side to change the outcome of a match.
nosraC then speaks for the only time in the recording, saying that they were unsure if the Russian Canadians in-game leader, vek, would "agree to radar." retchy immediately refutes the claim, stating that vek had agreed to streaming his radar in exchange for "letting [vek] use two Bitcoin sites" and "share profit from those two sites." He also goes on to say that David "J0LZ" Jolin, a Russian Canadians player, was "okay with it" and that he had asked vek and J0LZ to keep Dylan "Saturn" Finch and Ian "battery" Yates out of the loop, so that it could "look like a legit tryhard game."
4pack agrees before reaffirming he wouldn’t help to setup the Incognito match, but conceded that retchy could. The recording ends with retchy disconnecting from the server to restart his PC.
The provided recording is the first concrete piece of evidence publicly released by Dust2.us in a year-long investigation into matchfixing in North America. The Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) currently has an investigation underway, but has not provided an official update on the situation in North America since their initial report in early September. In an interview released recently by slash32, ESIC Commissioner Ian Smith stated:
I’m very confident that we’ll be able to go public with [the first NA matchfixing report] soon... within the next 10 days to two weeks.
The complete transcript of the recording, spanning a run-time of 1 minute and 54 seconds, can be found below:
retchy: No it would be sus[picious] if you played Incognito like the full game, but if you joined at half, it would look real. Or not even at half, in the middle of the game while it's going, you just join, "my internet's back", we get shrek out of the server and it looks normal.
4pack: I'm not doing it, bro.
retchy: As long as shrek plays like four or five rounds, it's gonna look good.
4pack: And the fact that you didn't even say anything about the Russian Canadians game, that's even more fucked, but...
4pack: What do you mean what? You didn't say anything about it.
retchy: What do you mean?
4pack: Okay, now you're just acting dumb.
retchy: No, I'm serious, what are you talking about?
4pack: What do you mean? I was just talking yesterday about winning a match so we can play Mythic in playoffs, you didn't say anything. Now today you just come into the TeamSpeak and you're like, "yeah, we're just gonna lose the game." Like what? *scoffs* What do you mean?
retchy: We've been planning to lose this game for the last five days; it makes the most sense out of every game in MDL. They need this win, we don't need the win, and with their IGL on radar and you off the server, it looks guaranteed real.
nosraC: I don't know if vek will agree to radar.
retchy: He does, he agrees to radar. On the condition that I'm letting him use two Bitcoin sites, and I'm going to share profit from those two sites. And J0LZ is okay with it too. And they're not- I told them there's no way you tell battery or Saturn, it needs to look like a legit tryhard game.
4pack: Alright, whatever. But I'm not setting up the Incognito game, I told you.
retchy: I know, I don't think you should, you should join in while shrek is playing, like three rounds in.
4pack: No. *laughs*
retchy: No, the main thing is that if it shows six people on HLTV, it'll look so good.
4pack: Well, you can set it up or something, I dunno.
retchy: I'm going to restart for [ESEA Pro] client, hold on.
In the months following Dust2.us receiving the recording, there have been a number of developments regarding matchfixing in North America. In mid-February, vek posted a tweet and an accompanying TwitLonger acknowledging the existence of the above recording but disavowing any association with any matchfixers. vek declined to comment when Dust2.us reached out to him prior to the publication of this report.
Stephen Hanna, Director of Global Strategy and Partnerships at ESIC, provided Dust2.us with an exclusive update regarding ESIC's NA matchfixing report:
We have been in constant communication with the FBI on this matter and are also involving other stakeholders to ensure that players that have acted in an adverse manner are expelled from esports entirely, not just from one title.
Our indicative timeline is to have our first notices of charge prepared in final form for distribution to the offending parties by the end of next week, subject to cooperation with the FBI and other key stakeholders.
Additionally, Richard Lewis reported yesterday that Riot Games are pursuing an independent investigation into whether any current professional VALORANT players engaged in matchfixing during their time in CS:GO.
Dust2.us has reached out to all players named in the report, and with the exception of vek, has not received a reply at the time of publication.
Danish "Nohte" Allana and Joe "tolkienfanatic" Cardali contributed to the writing and planning of this article. Dust2.us has cooperated with ESIC since receiving this recording, and all information on the subject of matchfixing in North America gathered by Dust2.us has been passed onto ESIC for consideration in their forthcoming report.