Last month, Dota 2 pro player Carlo “Kuku” Palad caused outrage over racist taunts he made in a non-tournament game. This month, Chongqing’s government – the city where Dota 2’s next big tournament is due to be held in January – have claimed they might cancel the Major if Palad attends.
The information comes from Palad’s team, TNC Predator. They also relayed that the organisers “couldn’t guarantee” Palad’s safety if he chose to come. He is, however, not forbidden from trying.
3. The organizers will not be able to guarantee his safety should he attend
The organizers also informed us that neither TNC nor Kuku is banned from attending the Major.
— TNC Predator (@TNCPredator) December 2, 2018
In a followup statement, TNC said that they had contacted Valve and been told their team “may still compete at the Major with a stand-in and that no point penalties will be applied”. The team hasn’t yet decided on their plans.
TNC recently docked half of Palad’s winnings from coming 5th in the Kuala Lumpur Major because of his comments. They said they’d do the same for his winning’s from the Chongqing Major or the Bucharest Minor, whichever was larger, and that the money will be donated to an anti-racism charity.
Palad’s taunts weren’t an isolated incident in the Dota 2 pro scene. Complexity Gaming recently fined Andrei “skem” Ong one month’s salary for comments of his own, as well as moving him “off of the active roster” while they “help him find a new home”. The incidents prompted Valve to issue a statement condemning racist behaviour:
“We think it is really damaging to the entire Dota community whenever even a single professional player uses discriminatory language. It pits fans against each other, belittles and demeans entire groups and makes them feel like they are not as important. Going forward, we expect all teams who participate in our tournaments to hold its players accountable, and be prepared to follow up with strong punishments when players represent Dota and its community poorly.”
I’d have liked to see some specificity about what Valve considers a “strong punishment”, but that’s better than nout.