Former TSM head of player development Peter Zhang has responded to his recent termination, making a TwitLonger post earlier today to explain “his side of the story.” Zhang was fired from TSM on March 18 due to “‘very serious allegations of conflict of interest and unethical practices,” according to a statement made by the organization.
Zhang, according to a report from Dexerto earlier this week, was fired from TSM due to “alleged financial irregularities” that reportedly included Zhang asking to borrow money from players on TSM’s roster.
Earlier this week, Zhang was accused by former TSM member Doublelift of looking to borrow $70,000 to pay for his grandmother’s cancer treatment. Furthermore, Zhang was accused of selling former TSM support SwordArt’s $80,000 car for him and keeping the money to himself, according to Dexerto’s report. He realized that the money received from the sale of SwordArt’s car wouldn’t be able to pay for his grandmother’s treatment, so Zhang turned to asking for players in the organization for money to pay back his debt to SwordArt, which the former TSM support threatened to make public if Zhang didn’t pay him back, according to Dexerto’s report.
Zhang has since apologized to SwordArt in his TwitLonger post, saying that “I want to take responsibility for my mistakes.” Additionally, Zhang claims that “the money has been returned to all the players and I apologized to all of them and then I talked to Swordart and his family and are resolving the situation.”
Beyond reportedly asking for money from TSM players to pay for his family affairs, Zhang was accused of taking money from prospective players to ensure that they would have a spot on TSM’s roster, according to Dexerto’s report. In his TwitLonger post made today, Zhang denied accusations that he had offered spots on TSM’s roster if players allowed Zhang to represent them as their de facto agent and said he had no business-related ties to any of the agents for TSM’s Mandarin-speaking players that the organization acquired during the last two years.
Zhang also claimed in his TwitLonger post that TSM barred him from being a part of the negotiation processes during the player acquisition-focused portion of the 2021-22 offseason. “TSM also told me that I wasn’t supposed to be part of negotiations this year,” Zhang said. “TSM used another person on staff who spoke Mandarin to help with negotiations.”
In addition, Zhang denied taking cuts of any players’ earnings while on the TSM coaching staff. He did admit, however, to assisting TSM’s Academy-level support player Yursan in transferring money from his bank account to his agent in China. Zhang took a cut of $1,000 from Yursan’s salary each month and sent it to Yursan’s agent in China, according to Dexerto’s report.
“Anyone can check that I am telling the truth by asking any of these players or any player I have ever worked with,” Zhang said in his TwitLonger. “I have never asked to be their agent to talk to TSM and I have never taken a part of their salary. They will all agree with me.”
TSM’s LCS team will return to the stage on Friday, March 25 for a game against 100 Thieves.