Andrew Tate’s incident blew up G2’s plans for Valorant in North America

For months, G2 Esports has been looking for a foothold in North America, reaching out to the best players and coaches in the region to potentially work for the team. By September 14, a week before developer Riot Games announced its list of partner teams for its “Valorant” esports championship, the Berlin-based esports organization seemed certain it had locked in a coveted partnership space. Coming to the point of The Washington Post offers an exclusive interview with its CEO, Carlos Rodriguez, on the occasion of G2’s entry into the Americas league.

In the end, however, the team, which was valued at $ 340 million by Forbes in May, was not named a “Valorant” partner in any region. Riot released the full list of its 30 partner teams on Wednesday; G2 was not on that list. The developer’s apparent turnaround came after Rodriguez posted a Twitter video of himself celebrating with anti-feminist and self-described misogynist influencer Andrew Tate on September 17. Faced with a negative reaction, Rodriguez doubled down on Twitter, writing, “No one will ever be able to control my friendships.… I party with whoever the fuck I want.

Rodriguez released the apologies the next day, and G2 announced that the executive would be suspended without pay for eight weeks. On Friday, the organization announced it had done so received and accepted by Rodriguez resignation.

“We disappointed you last night,” reads the initial G2 Esports tweet, announcing the suspension. “Our CEO’s actions spoke a language in stark contrast to the values ​​and culture that G2 lives and stands for. And for this we apologize ”.

That weekend, Riot executives, in Istanbul for the “Valorant” Champions esports event, gathered to discuss the situation. By Monday, when the decisions were passed down to the teams, G2 was no longer considered for the partnership.

G2 declined to comment beyond his own initial statements announcing the suspension of Rodriguez. Rodriguez did not respond to a request sent via direct message on Twitter. The interview offered to the Washington Post was never conducted.

Interview: Riot esports president talks about super competitive Valorant partnerships

In April, Riot Games announced a new “Valorant” esports facility starting in 2023, in which the sport’s open participation system would be reduced to the highest level to 30 “partner” organizations that would enjoy unique benefits. including an annual salary. The season will begin with an international tournament in Sao Paulo, Brazil. When the game developer announced on Wednesday which teams had managed to get through the highly selective process, his explanation of the criteria offered a hint as to why G2 was ultimately not offered a partnership slot.

“We looked for three things in our new one [Valorant Champions Tour] partners, “reads Riot’s announcement. The first of three points explains that the company was looking for” organizations that share our values ​​of always putting fans first, celebrating our diverse community, and are committed to support professionals “.

Riot has never formally offered a slot to G2. However, according to people familiar with Riot’s thinking, some team executives have been given the informal green light to their partnership questions to allow them to begin managing the logistics of a possible relocation.

Riot Games declined to comment, saying it would not discuss individual esports teams.

Since at least June, G2 has shown interest in acquiring or working with North American talent. Beginning in the summer and until its partnership materialized, the organization informally contacted the best coaches and players in the region to inquire about their interest in working for an American G2 team. G2 reached out to members of Luminosity Gaming’s “Valorant” roster in June, for example. These players were eventually ported to Shopify Rebellion.

G2 also expressed a strong interest in acquiring XSET’s roster and coaching staff if the Boston-based organization didn’t enter the American league. The team had posted a high-level performance and was ranked on the “Valorant” VLR esports news and statistics website as the second best team in North America.

“To put it simply, things seemed to be going well if G2 was in,” said one person familiar with extending G2 to XSET. Now the XSET team is reportedly looking to be picked up by a different partner team, both full-fledged and core members.

G2 had also interviewed North American talent for a head coach position and sought to hire a general manager and team psychologist.

“[I’m] Obviously quite gutted, “said Adam” kaplan “Kaplan, a North American manager who interviewed G2 for the role of head coach. G2 had contacted Kaplan in early September.” Five teams is an incredibly low number of teams to fool. NA. … While I am confident in my situation, as a region we are guaranteed to see a large talent pool who will not have the opportunity to show Sao Paulo and the world how competitive an NA region has been in the last two years”.