Korean fans were surprised to see Kim “Aiming” Ha-ram on stage playing for Afreeca Freecs against the ROX Tigers, and not just because he was playing ahead of the seasoned AD carry Ha “Kramer” Jong-hu.
The rookie AD carry has been in the center of a scandal over the past few days that left fans outraged.
It surfaced that Aiming, as well as KingZone DragonX’s Kim “Rascal” Kwang-hee and ROX Tigers’ Yoon “SeongHwan” Seong-hwan had been posting insensitive comments online.
According to reports, the comments related to the suicide of former South Korean president Roh Moo-hyun.
These kind of insults against the deceased are seriously frowned upon in Korean culture. As a consequent, Afreeca Freecs has ordered its roster to take culture lessons in order to prevent any similar incidents from occurring in the future.
Likewise, Aiming was forced to make a public apology via the Afreeca Freecs Twitter page.
팬 여러분들께 다시 한 번 사과드립니다.
최근 ‘에이밍’ 김하람 선수에 대한 팬 여러분들의 분노, 비판의 목소리가 크다는 것을 잘 알고 있습니다.
무엇보다 사과문을 올리는 과정에서 불필요한 변명으로 진정성 있는 사과를 드리지 못한 점에 대해 더할 수 없이 죄송스럽게 생각합니다. pic.twitter.com/lA1taKEkob
— Afreeca Freecs LoL (@Freecs_LoL) March 8, 2018
Afreeca Freecs Aiming avoids suspension
KingZone DragonX has suspended Rascal indefinitely. However, Thursday’s clash confirmed that Afreeca had opted against dishing out a similar punishment to Aiming.
Fans have been vocal of the decision made by the coach to let Aiming play against ROX TIgers. Many feel that the response has not been harsh enough considering the player’s actions.
Speaking in his post-match interview, Choi “iloveoov” Yeong-sung, Afreeca Freecs head coach, said:
“One mistake raised a big issue, but I don’t want this kid’s career ruined because of a mistake.”
Iloveoov has promised the fans that he would be guiding Aiming in the future. The coach was keen to ensure that this behaviour won’t be repeated.
The players will be punished only by the organisations that they play for, since the comments weren’t posted on a platform related to Riot Games.
The League of Legends developer has a zero tolerance policy for bad behaviour, especially when committed by those playing as professionals in their esports leagues.
Kim “Khan” Dong-ha, current top laner of King Zone DragonX, was penalised back in December for making comments that were judged to be racist. Riot handed him a fine for his behaviour. Likewise, he was forced to miss the first match of the Spring Split.
As for the punishment that SeongHwan will receive, the organisation has yet to comment. The ROX Tigers jungler took over the team’s official twitter account to publish a heartfelt handwritten apology earlier this week.