Written copy :-
Ladies and gentlemen, my name is TotalBiscuit, sponsor and spokesperson for Axiom eSports, and I'm here to provide a statement from our team in regards to the recent Slayers drama and accusations from Jessica leveled at our player Crank. I will be providing a translated statement from Crank, which address all of the issues he wishes to discuss, after which I will provide Axiom's perspective on the whole ordeal. I apologise for the recording quality, I am currently sitting in the middle of a hotel room in Vegas, not exactly the ideal recording environment.
Okay, so this statement was translated for us, and accurately reflects the thoughts of Crank at this time on several matters, so I'm quoting this verbatim.
There are two things I wish to address and clarify. Firstly the accusation that I lied to the team about wanting to join a foreign team for money, and secondly, that I disrespected Boxer on the phone. In refuting the first accusation I want to explain I felt for a while that Jessica, Boxer and coach Cella were not taking proper care of the team, in terms of motivation, practice routines, house atmosphere, etcetera. For many months I requested that we receive better care from the management, and although they always said they would, nothing seemed to change. Boxer came to the house to be with us, but still nothing changed. Instead of providing the support that the team needed, Boxer often sat around and did other things that were not in relation to us. His focus was not on the team, or Starcraft 2. That's why I asked to go home, and leave the team, because nothing seemed to change for the better. Regarding this, I've talked to Boxer about it privately, and Boxer said, in that conversation, that he admits, and recognises, his fault. I made it a point to tell him that it was not about the money, or about going to a better team, because I did not want any misunderstandings when I left. But Jessica continually would not recognise her own mistakes, and made me out to be the bad guy who abandoned the team to survive on his own. Once I left the team , and went back home, I realised how alone I was. I had no team, and was only a Code B player with nothing to brag about. On top of that, I was an old, Korean age 24, player living at home. As a man who has already finished his military service, I could not ask my family for much monetary support. It was a humbling challenge for me to be back there. Because of this, I started streaming, but since my career wasn't that great I only made about one hundred and fifty to two hundred thousand wan a month, which is about the equivalent of one hundred and forty to one hundred and eighty five dollars. That is what prompted me to look for a team that could provide me with a good gaming environment so that I could better myself. It was never my intention to search for a team with lots of money.
In response to the second accusation, my response is that during my last phone call with Jessica we got into a screaming match. No matter what I said, she refused to listen, saying 'no matter what you say, I will not listen to you, you are a liar who left the team.' I urged her to resolve this matter over the phone, but her mind was made up. I kept on trying to talk with her, but it was in vain. Then Boxer got on the phone. He explained that, according to him, from the perspective of the team and himself, I was the cause of all the internal issues, including the MMA, Ryung and Alicia ones. I questioned this statement. I asked him 'don't you remember all the times I said let's change things and let's work harder, why do you think I am the cause.' After I reminded him of our past conversations, he finally said that he understood where I was coming from, but from the view of the team, that's just the way it had to be. He said 'I recognise that you tried your best to change things, but there's nothing I can do from the perspective of the team. I also accept responsibility that I did wrong too, but it would have been better if you didn't leave the team on such a bad note. After all this, we can set up a separate meeting and reconcile you and Jessica.' I broke down crying due to frustration. It is true that I had very angry emotions that I couldn't hold back any more regarding Jessica, and it is wrong of me that I fought with, and screamed at, an adult. But when I was on the phone with Boxer, I did not yell. I was crying because I felt really wronged by all of this. Even if Jessica recorded the call, I wouldn't be embarrassed by any of it, even if it went out in the open. All in all, I feel like all the problems needed a scapegoat, and since I was the first one to leave the team, I became that scapegoat. I am not writing this to cause any more trouble, or to say that I did nothing wrong. I just want to clear up my name, and clarify what happened.
That concludes Crank's statement, translated into English. You can expect additional information to come out over the next couple of days in interviews conducted in Korean.
Axiom eSports does not currently represent the interests of MMA, ergo we will not be discussing his situation at this time. Now, let me talk about things from Axiom's perspective. So, Axiom entered into a contract with Crank after we had established a relationship of trust. That relationship hasn't changed. We are not learning anything new that we did not already know prior to signing Crank to the team. Crank has our complete and total support, and unwavering trust at this time. Axiom understand his motivations and the actions he took involving Slayers, Jessica and Boxer, and believes he took the correct action, given the circumstances. We also believe that motivation is key to any professional gamer, and it's not surprising that he felt he did not want to carry on due to the situation with Slayers. When we brought Crank to MLG we did not bring a broken, disheartened player to a tournament. We brought a player with a renewed will to fight, an enthusiasm rekindled by community support, and a consummate professional who had rediscovered his passion for Starcraft. Differents player thrive in different environments, and each has individual needs. We hope to be able to support Crank and ensure his continuing success. Axiom is about, more than anything, new beginnings for its members, a blank sheet upon which they can write a new chapter in their career, secure in the knowledge that they are on a team that has their back one hundred percent of the time and will be in their corner when they need us the most. We do not throw our players under the bus. We trust our players, just as they trust us, and we will not be taking any action against Crank because we do not believe he did anything wrong to begin with. Axiom has nothing but respect for Boxer, Jessica, and the achievements of Slayers, but, nobody is perfect. Mistakes were made on all sides, and we only hope to learn from those errors to create a better environment for our players so we may one day hope to equal the achievements of Slayers and other Korean teams. The reality of the situation is that when you own an eSports team you have a certain amount of responsibility. If you are involved in the staff, if you are involved in the management or ownership of the team in any way, then responsibility for the problems, failures, and of course successes of the team lie upon your shoulders. This is the case with every team, whether it be a foreign team or a Korean team. It is my opinion, as a representative of Axiom, that when looking at the reasons for failure, one should always start at the top, not at the bottom. There appears to be a great deal of blame being placed upon the players, and yet no questions are being asked as to why a professionally owned and operated team imploded so completely. It is very easy to blame the ESF situation for the downfall of Slayers, and there is no question that coach Won was in the wrong in instigating this particular incident, not to mention the fact that he himself accepted responsibility, and resigned from his position as head of the ESF. However, it was not merely this external factor that caused the collapse of the team, and I hope that we will find out more about the situation as more investigation is done. I find it very hard to believe that even if all the accusations towards the players were true, that a handful of players could bring down such a large and successful team on their own, and that the team management was not capable of doing anything to stop it. My name has been TotalBiscuit, thank you for listening.