In what appears to be a recurring theme with some bad actors inside the esports ecosystem, there is yet another non-payment controversy. According to Ameer Khan, former CEO of the now defunct Ember EC, he and his now former player Ben “The Spleen” Zilberberg, have yet to be compensated for Zilberberg’s participation as a stand-in player for Lazarus during the IEM Katowice Guns of Boom kick-off match that took place last March.
According to Khan, Game Insight, makers of Guns of Boom, invited Lazarus and NobleGG to participate in the kick-off event. However, when Lazarus player Abdessamii “Rom1o” Faith (Morocco) had visa issues and would not be able to participate, the team would need a stand-in. But the way Lazarus went about it has been eating at Khan to this day.
“At first, they approached Ben without my consent and asked if he wanted to sub for them,” Khan recounted. “I found out from another player this was going to happen. I then stated to the people at Lazarus that in our player contracts all loan moves must be approved beforehand.”
After feeling slighted and a little frustrated, Khan told Lazarus no and that they would not allow any of their players to stand-in for the event because of how they handled the initial contact. However, Khan relented after the game publisher told Khan they may have to cancel the entire event if they couldn’t get a high-caliber player.
“At that point, I was shaken up. But I wanted to give my player LAN time,” said Khan. “I wanted to do what any other organization owner would want for their player so we agreed that the terms of the contract held in place would be applied to his share of the winnings from the Katowice event.”
Match notifications, latest esports news, and more. Get the Upcomer app now.
And so far Khan has seen zero payment to him or the organization for the loaning of the player and Zilberberg was given a small amount of money pooled together by the players from that squad when they heard he wasn’t getting paid.
“The Lazarus players got paid out, but for some reason Rom1o didn't want to pay Ben,” Khan said. “The other players got the organization management involved, but they brushed it off. The other players felt bad and gave him some money. However, ‘till this day we haven’t been paid.”
While the amount owed by Lazarus may not be that much, Khan is simply tired of hearing stories such as the one he and his organization has gone through.
“I don’t want this situation to slide, it’s just bad for esports,” Khan lamented. “But, at the same time it’s not worth pursuing in court because it is at a maximum a few thousand dollars and maybe they know that.”
Lazarus management did not respond for comment.