Olivia R. July 15, 2020
The Guangzhou Charge recently announced that it has signed Cai "Krystal" Shilong, a talented Chinese player who has shown a lot of promise throughout his professional Overwatch career.
He will be a two-way player that competes with the Charge in the Overwatch League as well as on their Contenders team, Ignite One.
"As a two-way player, we are giving Krystal a fresh start, which we believe that everyone deserves, as well as the opportunity to prove himself as a committed professional and a good teammate. We look forward to seeing what Krystal can do with this opportunity!" the Charge tweeted.
But the move was met with immediate concern from the Overwatch League community. Many noted that the Charge has been making "questionable" choices, while others said that Krystal didn't deserve a second chance after what he did.
And what was that?
Last year, Krystal was fined by the Hangzhou Spark for leaving for 10 days without notifying anyone in the organization. This came after the young player disrupted team practices, demanded new living arrangements, and then brought the wrong visa with him to the United States, resulting in him being sent back to China.
Spark's drama with Krystal continues with massive lawsuit
Krystal was fined by the Spark in 2019 for having a persistently negative attitude, demanding the ability to switch roles during practice, and leaving for China after allegedly faking an illness. After being suspended for almost 10 months, the Spark released Krystal in June.
According to Spark, the team "yielded all legal matters" to their parent company, Bilibili Esports.
Bilibili is going after Krystal in a big way, and is looking for a whopping $2 million in damages.
"[Krystal's] violations infringed upon the team and the company's interests, resulting in serious losses for management, achievement, brand reputation, and business domains," Bilibili Esports stated.
They started the process of submitting an arbitration application to the Chinese International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission on June 15th.
The entire situation with Krystal, the Spark, and the Charge led to a debate within the Overwatch League community. Some believed he deserved a second chance and had only been "homesick" last year. Others felt he was completely unprofessional and called the move a "publicity stunt" on Charge's end.
Only time will tell if Krystal will prove himself professional and reliable this time around. With the competition revolving around online play, it's possible that Krystal will get to practice in a private setting that is more to his liking.