H2k and TSM Situation
The whole deal with Svenskeren started on November 3rd. At this point, his contract had been expired for three days, since the end of Worlds. I reached out to him because I needed a top tier jungler. I offered him a temporary tryout position which involved playing at IEM San Jose.
Svenskeren was hesitant to take the tryout, since there was a chance that a poor performance at IEM San Jose would hurt his potential offers for the coming season. He was reluctant to join unless he was guaranteed the starter position. Since he was an incredibly prolific free agent, he was already in negotiations with multiple LCS organizations that were willing to give him a starting position, including H2K.
Despite the reluctance, he was still considering my offer for a tryout. He eventually turned it down because H2K was offering a really good deal, and would back out of their offer if he chose to try out for TSM. Svenskeren told me if I wanted him to be able to try out for my team, I needed to convince H2K to still give him a starting position even if he did not get the position on TSM.
Thus, I had a call with Richard (THE CEO of H2K) where I offered to pay him to guarantee Svenskeren the spot on H2K if the tryouts didn’t go well. The call ended with us deciding to spend a day to consider the situation, and to come up with terms we could agree on to allow Svenskeren to try out for TSM while keeping his guaranteed spot on H2K. To clarify, I offered to pay the CEO of H2K to allow Svenskeren to keep a guaranteed spot on the H2K roster while being allowed to try out for my team. Following this, I started to come up with a way to find a win-win situation. The following screenshot is proof that the call happened and we even scheduled a time to go over the details the next day. It is unfortunately illegal to record a Skype conversation without the other party’s consent, and thus I can provide no recording of it.
However, after the call, Richard immediately reached out to Svenskeren to attempt to sign him with an increased offer, completely against the fact that we both agreed to think about the situation and wait.
(If you account for time zone differences, the above conversation occurred approximately an hour after my call with Richard. California is 9 hours behind Denmark)
Richard made an attempt at increasing the offer and stated that he would completely back out of the offer if Svenskeren did not take it immediately. They were essentially handing him an ultimatum; accept our offer now or it’s off the table for good.
Svenskeren proceeded to turn down my tryout offer as a TRYOUT and proceeded to go into further conversations with H2K. It was during this time where although he said he would sign a contract with H2K, he officially did not sign anything.
(As far as I know, this is their “written confirmation”, which a lawyer has confirmed would not hold up as binding)
Meanwhile, I realized that I needed to give him a starting position, otherwise I would lose the chance of getting him period. I talked to my team and we all agreed to give him the starting position. At this point in time, there was and there still is no proof of Svenskeren signing a contract with H2K to our knowledge. I even asked him as shown in the following screenshot:
Svenskeren accepted our terms, but we waited for clearance by Riot before signing him. It was at this point that H2K started to intimidate Svenskeren by stating that he was legally bound to their team.
In addition, H2K sent me a letter threatening to sue me:
However, after realizing that the intimidation tactics did not work on either of us, H2K pulled a total 180 and proceeded to offer Svenskeren a huge signing bonus, despite pulling an ultimatum with him and resorting to intimidation. Additionally, according to Svenskeren, Richard also started to call his parents and siblings to say bad things about me. In response to the statement that “Sven HIMSELF actually requested that everything we talked about and sent was also shared with his mother”, this was meant to be about any contract business that would occur with H2K, and not TSM. The following screenshots show evidence of Svenskeren communicating that he felt harassed, and feeling that H2K stepped outside the bounds of any agreement involving his family:
Following these allegations, I proceeded to contact 3 lawyers, with all parties unanimous that my signing of Svenskeren was completely legitimate. Riot also responded that according to their rules and with the information I provided, they did not consider Svenskeren a signed player, nor do they agree that this is an attempt at poaching or tampering. After getting the clearance from Riot that I was not poaching, I proceeded to sign Svenskeren on November 8th.
Overall, H2K's final offer was greater than mine, but Svenskeren did not feel comfortable signing with someone who would use these kinds of tactics to sign a player. I hope this clears up any confusion concerning this situation. We will proceed to stand behind Svenskeren unless evidence comes to light that he actually signed a contract with H2K.