Cloud9 and G2 Esports allegedly colluded to prevent the sale of former C9 and G2 mid laner Luka “Perkz” Perković to Fnatic, according to a report from Dot Esports on Wednesday. High-level Riot Games officials conducted an investigation and determined that no punishment would be administered as no harm was done to the player. Later on Wednesday, director of operations for LoL Esports Tom Martell issued a statement further elaborating on this decision.
How G2 and Cloud9 allegedly colluded to prevent Perkz’ sale to Fnatic
A clause in the buyout agreement between G2 Esports and Cloud9 in 2020, worth over $5 million, kept Cloud9 from selling Perkz to Fnatic from Nov. 2020 to the end of the 2023 season, according to a copy of said agreement possessed by Dot Esports. This buyout agreement was approved by the League of Legends Championship Series in Nov. 2020.
Fnatic contacted Riot’s League of Legends European Championship offices upon hearing of the clause and filed an official complaint with the league, which was then escalated to the global esports team at Riot.
Riot determined after the investigation that the included clause did not have any impact on the mid laner’s offseason options going into 2022, according to Dot Esports’ source that is close to the investigation. According to Riot Global, the clause did not affect Perkz’s 2021-2022 because Fnatic and Cloud9 had disagreements over Perkz’s buyout price and desired salary. Riot will not allow similar clauses to be included in player agreements going forward, a source told Dot Esports.
LCS Players’ Association provided public comment on the scenario stating that they were looking into it independently with an investigation.
“The LCSPA is independently investigating the circumstances of this report and will fight any agreement that illegally or unethically restricts player movement or alters player bargaining power.”
The LCSPA is independently investigating the circumstances of this report and will fight any agreement that illegally or unethically restricts player movement or alters player bargaining power. https://t.co/rzUB3DDCN3
— LCS Players Association (@NALCSPA) November 10, 2021
G2 Esports owner Carlos “ocelote” Rodriguez took to social media to give his thoughts on the situation as well.
“It makes sense,” said Rodriguez. “C9 could have bought the player to then sell him to Fnatic on the same day. We made sure this cannot be done. This is standard and within the rules, as proven by the trade being approved globally. You can’t outplay me, *****.”
Esportmaniacos first reported on Oct. 2021 that Perkz would be joining Team Vitality along with top laner Barney “Alphari” Morris and sources have told Upcomer of this as well. On Nov. 5, Upcomer’s sources confirmed Dot Esports report that this potential Vitality roster would also include bot laner Matyáš “Carzzy” Orság, formerly of MAD Lions, who is expected to sign with the team in a three-year deal.
At the 2021 League of Legends World Championship, both Perkz and Carzzy ended the tournament with a top-eight finish.
The League responds
Later on Wednesday, director of operations for LoL Esports Tom Martell issued a statement on the situation.
— LoL Esports (@lolesports) November 11, 2021
“We want to clear up any confusion related to the G2 – C9 transfer of Perkz that took place last offseason. As reported, the transfer agreement includes a provision preventing C9 from freely transferring Perkz to FNC. Onward transfer restrictions is a novel issue within the professional LoL Esports ecosystem,” Martell said in the statement.
“Our current rules governing player transfers do not explicitly prohibit restrictions on future transfers by the receiving team, so we will not penalize G2 and C9 for including such a clause in their agreement. However, as we recently communicated to G2, C9, and FNC, Riot does not intend to enforce the trade restriction and would recognize the transfer of Perkz to any team upon receipt of the appropriate paperwork in accordance with league rules. The enforcement of the restriction is a private contractual matter between the teams, to be resolved as appropriate in accordance with applicable law.
“Going forward, we will update our rules to prohibit future restrictions in transfer agreements, as they are not in line with the values and interests of our sport.”