Former TSM coach Peter Zhang permanently banned from Riot Games esports

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Published  9 Aug, 13:16
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Chinese coach Zhang "Peter Zhang" Yi, previously Head of Player Development at TSM, is permanently banned from any association or affiliation with any team or organization in Riot-sanctioned competitions. According to the Riot Games competitive ruling, the reasons for the permanent ban include unethical behavior towards current and former TSM players.

Peter Zhang violated the League Championship Series Set as well as the LCS Eligibility and Release agreement by diverting portions of player salaries to accounts belonging to Peter Zhang and his associates, by misleading and failing to fully compensate a former TSM player for the sale of the player’s car, and by soliciting loans from TSM players and staff.

"Between December 2021 and February 2022, Peter Zhang diverted approximately $250,000 in salary payments from two TSM players. The two concerned players were to receive a significant portion of their salaries through a third-party entity in China. The Entity sourced multiple bank accounts from the players in order to deposit their salaries. Peter Zhang provided the Entity with accounts supposedly on behalf of the players. However, the accounts provided were overwhelmingly affiliated with Peter Zhang. As a result, the majority of the players’ salaries were diverted to accounts owned by Peter Zhang," as noted in the Riot Games competitive ruling.

The evidence suggests that Peter Zhang shared non-public information during his employment at TSM regarding TSM’s recruiting decisions, potentially in exchange for personal benefit.

“Between January 18, 2022 and March 18, 2022, Peter Zhang solicited a total of eight TSM players (over which he had managerial authority) and staff members to lend him approximately $15,000. TSM became aware of Peter Zhang’s solicitation on March 18, 2022 and took immediate action to reverse pending wire transfers, preventing Peter Zhang from receiving at least $20,000 more in loans. To date, approximately $4,500 remains unpaid to the players who loaned Peter Zhang money,” investigators reported.

Riot investigators had invited Peter Zhang to submit his statement against these allegations. Peter Zhang did submit a statement, but failed to provide any compelling evidence refuting the findings of the report.