Immortals is facing backlash after they posted a copy of their jersey with Kang “GorillA” Beom-hyeon’s name on the back on their social media. Fans took this as a joke by the industry, but for the player and the professional side of things, it didn’t go exactly to plan.
Since then, a series of tweets have been removed by both Immortals and GorillA over the incident, though fans have been able to screenshot most of them. Immortals issued an apology, citing regional differences as an excuse for the controversy.
We apologize for the tweet involving @lolGorillA
We did not understand the cultural differences between the NA and KR LoL communities 1/2
— Immortals (@Immortals) December 4, 2016
This, of course, has been met with feedback from casters, pros and the player himself, as something like this could potential harm the player in the long-run. If GorillA was talking about signing with other teams, those teams could have taken this “joke” as an announcement and cut off all talks.
@Immortals Not a cultural difference. Any player in the world would have been pissed by you putting their name on a jersey before signing.
— MonteCristo (@MonteCristo) December 4, 2016
IMT에서 올린 유니폼사진은 그저 장난일 뿐입니다.. 이야기는 끝난지 오래고, 저런 글로 인해 저도 이야기하고 있던 팀들이랑 오해가생기고 참 그렇네요..
— Beom Hyun Kang (@lolGorillA) December 4, 2016
Bangisbae on Reddit has translated the GorillA tweets and this was his reply to the outrage.
“The uniform photos uploaded by IMT are just a prank… It’s been a long time since the talks ended, and due to those words the teams I am in talks with may misunderstand so…”
“I’ve made an effort and making an effort because I most don’t want to ruin relationships as I finish talks with teams… A joke like this when it’s such a sensitive time…”
The debate seems long from finished and the conversations surrounding this incident will likely continue throughout the day. Although no harm was intended, it does not seem like the original tweet had the desired effect Immortals wanted.
Update: Since the time of publishing this article, GorillA has gone on to release an official response to the incident via Twitlonger.
GorillA and IMT have officially talked in person, and there are no hard feelings. GorillA’s initial response, according to the player, was made because pro teams actually asked him about the jersey post, possibly harming negotions and his chances of being signed. GorillA “became a little bit sensitive” due to this situation, but is now on good terms with IMT and wishes them the best for the future.
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