While one of the most popular players in Overwatch League sits with a suspension, new details are emerging about the nature of xQc’s punishment.
Overwatch League suspended Felix “xQc” Lengyel on January 19th, issuing a four-match ban and $2,000 fine for violating Overwatch League Code of Conduct on his personal stream. Later that day, Dallas Fuel announced on Twitter that they had extended the suspension for the remainder of Stage One. Lengyel will be able to return February 21st.
Days after the suspension, on his personal stream, Dallas Fuel teammate Seagull openly pondered the nature of xQc’s suspension. Here are the two notable comments:
“If he wants to play in OWL he knows what to do..It’s his choice..It’s not about the comment man…You really think Dallas Fuel banned someone for a (expletive) month over that comment.. It’s possible, yes, or maybe..he’s been having some other issues..what do you think.”
“Some people said it was just because of what he said… about Muma but it’s not, it’s a lot of other stuff, internal stuff, stuff I’m not gonna talk about, but yeah that’s why the punishment is harsh.”
In their statement, Dallas Fuel stated that xQc would receive additional resources during his suspension:
“During his suspension, we will be offering additional resources, focus coaching, physical training and support to Felix to help him improve as a professional player who is reflective of the principles of the Dallas Fuel organization, his teammates, and the Overwatch League,” it reads.
If the plan was for xQc to take it easy during his break, it’s hasn’t been the case. In the seven days since the suspension, xQc has streamed for six of them. From January 21-23, he streamed for over 30 hours on his Twitch channel.
Days after the incident, xQc stated on his stream that if Overwatch League doesn’t donate his fine money to an LGBT charity, then he will match the $2,000 and make the donation himself.
Projected to be one of the title contenders, Dallas Fuel have started the season, and Overwatch League, with four straight losses. xQc has spent a majority of that time on the bench, playing sparingly against Seoul and Los Angeles Valiant.
On one of the most experienced rosters in Overwatch League, xQc is one of the youngest. Korean DPS Effect is only 20, but xQc is the next-youngest Fuel member at only 22.
Overwatch League wants to be compared to major sports, and sadly this is one of the first places to draw comparisons. In May of 2017, Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Kevin Pillar was suspended for two games for using a homophobic slur during a game. Pillar donated his forfeited salary to two different LGBQT groups. Pillar also underwent sensitivity training.
As Overwatch League grows in inaugural seasons, the sponsors are starting to take notice. The league signed a two-year deal with Twitch on the eve of the season, and has since announced partnerships with Intel, HP, Toyota, T-Mobile, and Sour Patch Kids.