Investigation: Marcin “Kori” Wolski and MeetYourMakers | LoL Esports
Investigation: Marcin “Kori” Wolski and MeetYourMakers
Immediately prior to the start of the 2015 LCS season, we were informed that Marcin “Kori” Wolski had decided to leave MeetYourMakers (MYM). LCS officials accepted it was an emergency situation and the team was allowed to use a substitute for the upcoming games in Wolski’s absence. Subsequent facts have come to light which exhibit significant mismanagement and unprofessional behavior from a senior member of MYM’s management team. In this kind of complex case, full investigation of the facts takes time to complete, but after review we wanted to give insight into our internal investigation and next steps.
Although teams and players are ultimately responsible for navigating their own contractual relationships, we will do everything in our power to discourage and work against unacceptable environments involving our teams and players. We have zero tolerance for intimidation of players within an LCS organization.
On January 23, 2015 Wolski reached out to LCS officials stating that he had been threatened by MYM management. He also informed LCS officials that he had a recording of the conversation. We took this matter very seriously and continued our open investigation into the mistreatment of the player, although given legal concerns regarding the recording which was obtained without all parties’ knowledge, we did not request or use it to inform our ongoing investigation. The severity of the situation has since emerged through the recording being made public by Wolski, showing that he and his immediate family were threatened with legal action by MYM manager Sebastian Rotterdam.
Our investigation found fault on behalf of both player and management. Despite Wolski’s claims that payments had been withheld, we found the only missing payments stemmed from the Supa Hot Crew (SHC) organisation, of which Wolski was a player in the 2014 season. As we understand it, the failure to receive payments from SHC arose due to Wolski's own failure to provide requested tax documentation, and this problem can be resolved once Wolski produces these documents. As a separate organization, MYM has provided us with documentation verifying that they have not withheld any payment from its players. As such, it appeared that by leaving the team ahead of the beginning of the spring split Wolski was breaking an active contract and commitment to MYM.
It is not our intention to create a precedent that discourages teams from discussing legal issues or informing players of their liabilities should they seek to disavow an existing contract, as in Wolski’s case. In fact, teams and players should have these conversations and negotiations independently and with full context and knowledge of the legal commitments and restrictions. What we also believe, however, is that teams have a moral commitment to treat players - who are often inexperienced and vulnerable - with dignity and respect. Rotterdam’s actions in conversation with Wolski when addressing this contract break were both unprofessional and unjustifiable.
As confirmed by the team earlier today, MYM, of its own accord, has taken action against Rotterdam and fired him from his position as team manager. Rotterdam will also be indefinitely suspended by Riot from competing within the LCS as a manager or any other team position.
An entire LCS organization shoulders the responsibility for the behavior of their team members and ensuring their players have a safe and professional environment. MYM will be held accountable for Rotterdam’s actions towards Wolski and for failing to protect their team members from his unacceptable and bullying behavior. As such, Riot will be issuing MYM with a fine of €5,000 for unprofessional behaviour.
We know this fine may not satisfy those hoping for a harsher punishment for MYM, but there’s some important context as to how we reached this amount. In deciding the severity of the fine we took several factors into account. Primarily, we considered the fact that Rotterdam’s actions - and MYM’s failure to protect players from them - created an unprofessional work environment for the team. We also took into account the fact that MYM acted decisively to remove Rotterdam from the organization once the full facts of his behavior had come to light. Lastly, although it in no way justifies threats or intimidation, we also considered when deciding on a punishment the fact that Wolski appeared to break a commitment to a team, which put not only his career but those of his teammates in jeopardy.
We’re aware that questions have been raised as to whether MYM should be stripped of their LCS slot. After concluding our investigation, we feel that MYM has taken significant steps to remove toxic influence from within their organization and is prepared to move forward in the best interests of their players and their competitive careers. We believe that forfeiting the slot would unnecessarily penalize players and interrupt their pro careers through no fault of their own. Even though MYM has acted swiftly to correct this issue, any further violations can and will put them on a path to suspension from the LCS.
We appreciate the strength of community sentiment against any influence that would threaten or otherwise challenge the safety and security of pro teams and players. For Riot, cases like this tread a difficult balance between relying on the contractual relationships negotiated between teams and players to appropriately guide their behavior, and using our influence to try and ensure a professional, and ethical environment for those parties operating within the LCS ecosystem. Where we feel strongly that unprofessionalism is putting player security at risk, we can and will use our influence to try to ensure that the LCS pro experience is a positive one.
10.2.10 Moral Turpitude
A Team Member may not engage in any activity which is deemed by the LCS to be immoral, disgraceful, or contrary to conventional standards of proper ethical behavior.
MYM has violated rule 10.2.10 of the LCS ruleset and will be subject to penalties.
- Fined €5000
Sebastian Rotterdam is:
- Banned indefinitely from competing within the LCS as a manager or any other team position