Speaking My Truth
Speaking My truth:
I was never complicit in Zack’s relationship with Nairo or Ally. Tamim’s twitlonger is a huge lie and I will only speak on behalf of my story, not Zack’s.
Zack is my best friend. The first time I met Zack was at a brawl tournament in 2014, we both lived in Louisiana at the time. We teamed at that tournament and it was a lot of fun. I met Zack’s dad at that tournament too, who is incredibly nice. Since that tournament, Zack and I always traveled to tournaments together while I lived in Louisiana. He is the first friend I ever made through Smash. He was always excited to go to tournaments with me and we always loved seeing each other grow as players and people. If it wasn’t for him, I would probably not be as skillful at smash right now. Zack was and is the closest person to me in the community through Smash 4 and Ultimate. I always supported Zack’s smash career as he did with mine. Seeing him grow as a player from the beginning is something unexplainable and I am glad he was my first friend in smash. His family always cooked dinner when I came over and it really feels like his home is my second family and I am forever grateful for that.
Nairo was one of the closest friends I had in the Smash community. I first met Nairo at a Smash 4 tournament and we knew each other since then. Nairo was always a gleaming light in my eyes at smash and I always looked up to him. Seeing him succeed in streaming and tournaments, he was always someone I aspired to be. Nairo and I slowly got closer and closer throughout each tournament we were at, and it basically doubled at that rate in Ultimate. I could trust Nairo with any and everything of my problems and he always comforted me if I had any worries. We did everything together: teamed at tournaments, always played vs each other, played all sorts of different games, went out to eat at numerous restaurants. Any and everything you could ask for from a best friend, Nairo was that person to me.
Zack and Nairo's first encounter was at CEO Dreamland which was April 14th-16th 2017. I stayed in Tweek’s room for the weekend and it was Zack, Tweek, and I in the room on April 14th 2017, Friday. It was a normal day and we played smash in Tweek’s room and nothing ever happened. When Saturday came, Zack was not in the room that Saturday and went to Nairo’s room. I didn’t think much of it since I was sleeping on the floor and thought Zack wanted to give me a bed spot since there was only one bed that Tweek and Zack were sharing, so that’s why I thought he went to Nairo’s room. Sunday comes and the tournament ends. Tweek left the tourney early that weekend after being eliminated in the tourney early and went back home. Marss, Mr. R, and I went to Nairo’s room to chill after the tournament. When we got into the room, Zack’s head was on Nairo's chest which was strange. I kept thinking about why this is happening, but never approached Nairo or Zack at the time about it. I had to find a new place to stay since tweek ended up leaving and I ended up staying with Marss on that Sunday night. I never knew what Zack and Nairo did until several months afterwards when Zack randomly told me in a discord call “I sucked Nairo’s dick” months after the incident occurred. It seemed sudden for him to tell me this information and I was disgusted and did not believe him at the time thinking “this is what he made himself believe”. I couldn’t ever see Nairo in that light, but never confronted Nairo about that situation. It’s impossible for Nairo to do such an action with Zack, right?
Everything seemed so normal with Nairo and Zack. At every tournament, they would play friendlies and talk to each other normally and nothing abnormal seemed to have happened between them. We would all go out to eat at tourneys, everyone would compete, that would be the case every tourney before Zack told me this. When Zack told me this information, in my mind I thought he was just joking, and we immediately moved on. I never questioned him about the truth because it didn’t seem right. Even when the incident occurred, every single tourney afterwards was completely normal, between Nairo and Zack. No ill will towards each other, no hate harbored between them. Everything was normal.
In my mind, there was no way this happened. Everything just seemed perfectly normal. Zack never seemed like he was harmed from the situation and Nairo never confronted me about the situation, so I truly never believed it happened at that time. Every tourney was going normal, everything just felt like smooth sailing so I never questioned if Zack lied to me or not and never confronted Nairo. No one seemed hurt, so there's no way that it is true right? Nairo was always doing his own thing and Zack was always doing his own thing. Zack never really talked about Nairo to me much so I was never aware of what really happened. I just always wanted Zack to be happy and feel safe since he has been my closest friend since forever. All of this was happening in 2017 and the topic never came up in 2018 which was still during Smash 4. Many tournaments passed by and nothing ill-willed ever happened between Nairo and Zack. I was both of their best friends, Nairo never said anything about it and I thought Zack was not being serious, so I refused to believe it.
Everything resurfaced once Tamim came out about the Ally & Zack situation in late March 2019. Zack told me about Ally randomly in a discord call and this where I started questioning things. He, once again, told me months afterwards about their relationship around the end of Smash 4 in November 2018. This had become a habit and I started to question if the Nairo situation was true even if it was 2 years ago. I spread my concern to Zack about how it is not okay for him to be in a relationship with adults at his age, but he always came back saying that everything is fine, he was happy, and then he would diverge on the topic. I was so confused that “everything was fine” and refused to believe that. Every time I expressed my concern; he would instantly just backfire it away. I started to believe him because Zack was always my best friend and I always wanted the best for him, I never doubted him for a second. I am a fool for not pushing on the situation harder, it just didn’t seem true. This was not normal for a teenager to be in these relationships..
It was during Prime Saga weekend (April 13th-14th 2019) when the allegations of Zack & Ally resurfaced again. It was during this time that Nairo consulted me and told me his relations with Zack in the past. Nairo and Zack would be brought up in the mix everytime the Ally and Zack situation would come to light, and Nairo was worried about how much of a presence it would make. Nairo told me that he had relations with Zack. Nairo told me that if this ever got out that it would ruin his entire career, his family would shame him because they are religious, That his and Zack's situation is not the same as the Ally and Zack one because it wasn’t on-going. Nairo would always drill this into my head and I felt bad because I felt trapped and did not know what to do. If I ever said something, I would be crucified just like Tamim when he brought up the allegations with Ally and Zack. If I tried to bring this to light neither Nairo or Zack wanted this information public so they both would have denied it publicly and I have no evidence since everything was told to me by word of mouth. Nairo proceeded to then ask for my help and make sure the information about him and Zack never escaped. He wanted my help to talk to Tamim and Zack about the situation and make sure they think that the situation was different from Ally & Zack. Zack was always on board with what Nairo was saying to cover the events up and I just felt confused on what was happening. I just wanted both my best friends to be happy. Everything between Zack and Nairo seemed normal and its been 2 years since the incident and it seemed that there was no ill-will between them. I felt forced to help them cover the story up, but was never comfortable doing so because it was all one big lie. If I told the truth Nairo and Zack would turn against me but they both seemed very happy where they stood. I remember going out to eat with Pereden and Nairo that weekend. Pereden left to go to the bathroom and Nairo brought up how Ally and Zack was completely different from him and zack. He also told me to never tell Pereden of what happened between Zack and him because it would only hurt her. I felt so trapped and never said anything because in my head, Zack and Nairo were both so happy and if I ever said anything that it would ruin everything.
Nairo would have this conversation with me just about every tourney. The next tourney we had this conversation was GOML 2019 (May 17th-19th 2019). He would always reassure me that the situation was never the same as Ally & Zack and how it would ruin everything. His reputation, His family, everything. Talking about the situation always made me uncomfortable, but Zack didn’t mind it at all conversing with Nairo about keeping it a secret. If the two people conversing about the topic who was in it, then there is nothing I can say. I already confronted Zack about Ally multiple times and Zack seemed perfectly fine with Nairo. I felt helpless in knowing what was right and not being able to do anything about it and believed Nairo every step of the way.
CEO (June 28th-30th, 2019) would be the tournament that Zack admits that he had a relationship with Ally by posting the picture of the sticky note. Zack then deleted the picture immediately. This is where Nairo went into panic mode reassuring everything to me again of how it wasn’t the same and to make sure Zack didn’t say anything about their relationship. It was at this point of time I was questioning everything. Zack told the truth about Ally, he should tell the truth about you. What makes Nairo so different. But Nairo would always reassure me that it was different from them and how it would destroy his career and family, so I listened. Even if I came out with the information, I would again be crucified like Tamim because Zack stood firmly with Nairo. Again, Zack and Nairo were perfectly normal with each other throughout the years and it seemed to me that nothing bad had happened to them. Ally would soon after release a statement on how everything is true between the relationship of him and Zack. This was relieving because Zack did not seem happy for the longest time. I had always questioned Zack about his relationship with Ally reminding him that it was immoral.
Evo 2019 (August 2nd-4th 2019) would be the tourney where the blackmail allegations came out against Zack. Zack was staying in my room that weekend along with my parents. Before any of the blackmail allegations came out, Zack never told me anything about it. It was all shocking news to me. When the allegations came out against Zack that weekend, he didn’t say much about it in person. The allegations that were against Zack also sparked the Nairo and Zack rumors again. This weekend Nairo was doing a recording with Nintendo that was covering his EVO run. Nairo in no way shape or form wanted the information about Zack and him coming up again and Nintendo seeing it, so he called Zack and I and we went to my room to discuss privately. In the room he again reinstated that his family and career was on the line if any of this was to come to light. Nairo then made a story full of lies that included me within the story. I was NEVER comfortable being in this story, but Zack seemed so willing to go ahead with this story that I just didn’t want to let him down.
THE STORY: Zack and Nairo met at Evo 2019 and I was in the room with them. Nairo was throwing a temper-tantrum around the room upset at Zack for making the rumors up about him and Nairo. Zack’s “reason” for making up the rumors was to be that he was jealous of Nairo and Pereden. During the entirety of this, I was there to try to calm down the situation and remediate it. Nairo then storms out the room while Zack was just there crying and apologizing. This was the story.
The story was going to be told if it ever came to that point of many people questioning Zack and Nairo. Nairo asked if we were okay with the story. I was never comfortable lying to so many people that trust us, but Zack said he was perfectly fine with the story. Why would Zack be fine with the story? For what reason are you taking all the backlash for Nairo when he was at fault as the adult? On a story built on lies at that? Seeing Zack was unaffected by this situation made me so confused. Then if Zack was going along with it, then maybe I should? I never wanted to be in the middle of this and both of them were my best friends at the time and I was just so confused on what to do. I silently agreed with them, but I was always thinking if it really came to this, would I tell the lie? That made me so uncomfortable being in a middle of a lie and a scandal. I was confused on what was the truth and not. Nairo always reassured me that his situation with Zack was different than Ally and Zack's situation and how it would destroy everything he has if it ever got out. Zack always willingly agreed with what Nairo wanted to do and never retialited. Zack just seemed so fine with lying that I really thought that there was ever any ill-intention between the two. To me, it seemed as if they moved on. I never condoned what they done and always preached to Zack how he shouldn’t go for adults and how the adults in the situation are disgusting for doing this. He never listened to me and now I was wrapped in the middle of it, trapped.
After the blackmail allegations came out about Zack at Evo, he was banned from the community. Zack then told me the truth about him and Ally and how he blackmailed Ally because he felt that was the only way he could get out of the relationship. I never condoned Ally or Zack for their actions and was never complicit in their relationship. I told Zack that he messed up blackmailing Ally and that Ally had immoral acts forming a relationship like that with Zack. This is where Zack wanted to change for the better and I was there as a friend wanting to help him change for the better. Zack was always there for me, and I would be there for him. In the back of my mind, I wanted to ask Zack how he felt about the Nairo situation, but he always seemed so happy around Nairo and he believed that Nairo never did him any wrong. I was unsure how to go about asking him this, so I never did.
Front then, each tourney that the allegation would come up Nairo would talk with me and message Zack (who was already banned at the time) about how it was not the same from thing Zack and Ally. Zack was always on board and I felt trapped not being able to come up front with the information since they would both decline it ever happened.
Kongo Saga (December 7th-8th, 2019) is where the allegations were brought up again, but not from the public community. Nairo got a tip from the Canadian community that Ally was going to come out about information with Zack and Nairo. Nairo then messaged Ally that none of the rumors about him and Zack were true and threatened Ally to sue for defamation if Ally were to continue with this. Ally then stopped and nothing ever happened. Throughout this happening, Nairo was making sure that Zack and I were aboard the story if it did came out. I was always reluctant about lying and would not lie if it ever did come to that point, but Nairo and Zack were still aboard it so I hesitantly agreed. Knowing all this information, I did not know what to do. I did not ever want to lie, be in the middle of all this, or hurt my friends. I was so tired of being caught between all of these things and I wanted the truth to be out, but Zack did not want that. Without the victim’s consent, I could never come out about the story.
After Kongo Saga, none of the allegations ever arose again until next year. When the smash community started coming out with their stories around May of 2020. More and more allegations were being made and it started to spread the rumor of Nairo and Zack again. Nairo then immediately messaged me that the rumor was spreading again and to call him immediately. After the call he then told me to delete the messages and call logs. Anything Nairo ever messaged me about the situation, he told me to delete all his and my messages. (Zack was told the same). Nairo was extremely worried about all of this information coming out and still asked Zack and I if we were aboard the story. At this point, after seeing all of the brave people coming out with their stories, I was super reluctant to give an answer. He then as always reassured me that him and Ally are not the same and that Zack and him ended on amazing terms and how his career and his family would be in distraught. Knowing all of this and him drilling into my head repeatedly what would happen to him made me feel horrible if I did not agree with the story. Zack, once again, agreed to it and I silently agreed to it. Nothing about this situation ever felt right with me because it is all built upon lies and we would be lying to so many people that believe in us. I never wanted to be in this story and I never was complicit with any of the things Nairo and Zack did. I just feel like my voice would not be heard if I told them how I would truly felt because Zack wanted to protect Nairo and I cared for Nairo deeply. Nairo has done so much for me, maybe if this one thing passed through everything would be normal. Those thoughts kept on echoing in my head for months, but what Nairo did was never right and for him to cover this up is unfair to the community and especially Zack who is getting the backlash.
This is when Nairo made Zack make a fabricated tweet (July 1st, 2020) about him making up the rumors of what happened. Zack made the fabricated tweet and I was just so distraught that he would make Zack lie to the whole public. This was around the time of where Zack was finally redeeming himself from the Ally situation and was unbanned from VGBC tournaments. Everything was looking up towards Zack and for him to just betray the trust within the community with this lie? To all of the people that believed him, and he just lied to their face? I had never felt so disgusted with both Zack and Nairo before. This is where I told Zack about how I truly feel about the situation after holding it in for years because he seemed so unaffected by the situation. I told him about how this is showing no progress growing as a person and how he is living a life of lies again just like with the Ally situation. That he was taking all of the blame for Nairo when it's not even the truth. Zack started crying and finally revealed his true feelings to me that he never wanted to lie for Nairo, he was tired of all the backlash, and wanted the pain to stop. All I wanted was for Zack to tell the truth, this was hard for me because I knew what would happen to Nairo. Nairo, being my best friend who I did everything with and knowing how he drilled into my head about how his family and career would be destroyed. How he would have nowhere to work. How Nairo would feel betrayed by me because he trusted me with all this information and never thought I would feel this way. But this was not about Nairo, it was about setting Zack free from his shackles. Zack has been living a life of lies for YEARS and it wore and tore on Zack over the years. I just wanted Zack to be set free with the truth. Zack said that I was correct and that he knows he should not lie anymore, even if the consequence is ending one of his friends’ career. Zack told me how he truly felt about the situation but felt that he was trapped and not knowing what to do. I told Zack that I will always stand behind him in the truth, but not in a lie.
So many people are saying that Zack and I did this for personal gain, but it was never the situation. I feel so devastated because Nairo was one of the closest people to me and he feels betrayed by what I’ve done. It was never about cancelling Nairo, it was always about breaking Zack from his shackles. I know Zack is not a perfect person and I don’t condone everything that he has done, but he has been showing growth from it and I knew this was Zack’s final skeleton he had to tackle. I always supported him as a friend and always wanted to see him grow, this was always for Zack’s growth as a person.
THE FALSE ALLEGATIONS IN TAMIM’S TWITLONGER
Zack agreed to Nairo making up a follow up tweet, but never specified to Zack what exactly he was tweeting. Zack never knew exactly what Nairo was going to say and was still going to cover for him. The tweet painted Zack to be even more of a malicious person than he is and painted him to be even worse. Zack received instant backlash from the tweet Nairo made and Zack would have never agreed to that tweet had he known the wording prior to it’s release. Tamim is claiming that Zack and I used Nairo’s specific tweet to manipulate him into believing that Nairo was “abusing and manipulating the truth” and that this was why the Twitlonger with the truth should be told. Zack felt as if he was being attacked all over again. He was finally finding redemption and it all went down the drain instantly and he was devastated. The tweet did indeed paint Zack evil when it was also Nairo’s fault, so he felt he needed to say the truth.
I never shut down Tamim's opinion as he claimed in the twitlonger. Tamim gave his perspective and we all listened, and I gave my rebuttal. My rebuttal included that Zack was living a life of lies and taking all of the blame on Nairo’s behalf when that isn’t the truth. The truth would set Zack free because he told me he was feeling trapped. I repeatedly asked Tamim what do you think is the best option here and he never gave me an answer. In my heart, I believed that the truth was the right option and Zack felt the same way. This was never a simple call for anyone. Nairo is my closest friend, I just wanted Zack to be free from taking blame that was not his based off a lie..
I will not be speaking on Zack’s behalf on the lies that Tamim’s Twitlonger said about him as that is his story to tell if he ever wants to come forth with that information.
I was NEVER complacent in the situation and always expressed my concerns to Zack on why this is wrong and never right. To say I was contributing to what happened is heartbreaking. I always gave my concerns to Zack about Ally and I did go to the movies with them and teamed with Ally at multiple events, but I never condone any of their actions. Zack was always with Ally and it was never okay. I should have pushed harder to stop them, but Zack never wanted me to say anything ever. I regret my actions in the past of not speaking up more, but I was never complacent in their relationship ever. I rarely ever talked to Ally and I did not team with him at multiple events. Only one event (Momocon 2019 May 23rd-26th 2019). I expressed my concern to Zack so many times, but he never listened and if I were to come out with this information in a manner Tamim did, both Zack and Ally would claim that i’m lying and Zack’s trust in me would be betrayed. Zack never told me anything about what was truly going on in their relationship until after the fact that he was outed for blackmail and I explained how disappointed I was in him and asked why he never told me everything that was going on.
To say I never cared was never the case. I repeatedly expressed my concerns to Zack about his relationships with adults. He always deflected me whenever I brought up it’s an immoral act that he should not be taking part of, “it’s no one else’s business” “there’s nothing to worry about” he would answer shortly and never really tackled them with me. I never ever wanted to discard Nairo out of my life. He was my best friend through everything and this was really tough on me knowing that if Zack made the twitlonger, Nairo would no longer be in my life. The person who did so much for me would disappear. But this was never about Nairo, it was about always setting Zack free from his shackles. It was never about right or wrong, it was about telling the truth. I always stood up for Zack and he knows this, Tamim saying I never stood up for Zack is a lie, I have always stood by Zack through everything. I never ever tried to “garner sympathy” points from the community, I was emotionally distraught from the entire situation that’s been going on for years. To say I was trying to “garner sympathy” is completely inhuman. To paint this image about me to one of my best friends that I will always care about is so unjust. I really am shocked by Tamim’s twitlonger because I know I did the right thing now of telling Zack how I really felt and that he should come out with the truth. Nairo was always a limelight in my life and I loved him a lot. The Twitlonger from Zack was never false and this is a false narrative Tamim built within himself because he never stood with Zack and never believed him. This is Zack’s story to tell once more if he wishes to do so.
Its true that I was bothered about people always comparing me to Nairo, but I was never envious of Nairo. He was always my friend and I love to see all the success he had made in the future, it was never any envy or anger towards him. I was complaining about how everyone always came to me with news and questions about Nairo as if I had his agenda. I never collaborated with Nairo, it just seemed so normal to play smash online and our editors would take the footage and make videos out of them. Which included the titles, which seems like a planned collaboration but the title is a marketing technique made by our editors which we didn’t influence. Nairo and I never once discussed “we should play so we can get youtube content”. We always played for the sake of playing. It is still important to note that, from the beginning of the twitlonger, zack never expressed any ill-will towards Nairo which is why I was still close to Nairo. Never once was I complicit, always stating how I felt uncomfortable in the situation and wish I was never tied in the middle of it. I just felt like either choice I made hurt one of my best friends.
I never wanted to eliminate Nairo, my best friend, from my life or “competition” as he says. All I ever wanted was to see Zack grow as a person and to be freed from his shackles and it was always about that and the truth. Never once did I tell Zack that he needed to make a statement, but to do what he felt is right. I did say that I will always stand beside him in the truth, but never in a lie. Not once did I weaponize Zack’s story, he released his story on his own accord and I supported him through it. I didn’t want to push Zack story, I told him to take his time. It was Lima (the other person in the call) who rushed Zack to push the story. Lima stated things such as “hurry up, people are going to sleep”, “you don’t need all that information, it’s enough”, “it's too late to release the information you’re going to slow” throughout the call. He was rushing Zack through the entirety of the situation. Stories can never be rushed and Tamim is lying saying I was the one who rushed Zack when it was Lima all along.
Those messages with Lima was how I truly felt about the situation. I always wanted Zack to stop living a life of lies and tell the truth. To say I manipulated Lima is plain evil because it was always about the truth. Lima even admits I was right deep down but is saying Nairo’s career outweighs Zack having to lie again. Zack did message me saying that “he only cares about the coin” and that was plain evil which I don’t condone Zack for saying that. That is when I called him and told him about how I felt about everything. Tamim also states that I say “this is not about abuse, it is never about abuse with Nairo. Nairo is not a predator.” At the time, with emotions being very high I believed that Nairo was never a predator and it was never about outing him as a predator. It was always about letting Zack tell his truth in the end. It was never about right or wrong, it was about telling the truth. Both Zack and Nairo did wrong. It was always about the truth.
Zack never told me he was against making a statement, just that he needed time to think. I approached Lima with the situation because he was another close “friend” to Zack and knew about the situation as well. I told Lima how I felt and never once tried to manipulate him into getting a numbers advantage. I wanted to just consult who I thought were my “friends” about what the right thing to do was. I never wanted to feel like Zack was forced to say his story, because it is his story. He could have taken all the time he needed to feel prepared. “Cancelling” Nairo was never the motive here. I just really wanted Zack to be happy because he hasn't been happy in months and right when he was just getting any happiness, everything came crashing in on him when he tweeted about the rumors he made about Nairo. Nairo was always my closest friend and I always wanted him by my side, we did so many things together. Nairo being gone still hurts me every night and I think about him constantly. To say Nairo could not bring me any more fame or power and the only next thing to do was to get rid of him is beyond ridiculous and hurtful. I would always want Nairo by my side, but it was always about the truth and letting Zack free from his shackles. I never had any ill intentions towards Nairo because he was the closest person to me and did so much for me that I'm truly grateful for. He never once hurt me or made me feel miserable, Nairo was always there for me. To say I did this for my own personal gain when I gain absolute nothing is vile and outright evil. I still live in pain everyday thinking about Nairo and what he is doing at this very moment.
I talked with Nairo after the allegations happened to see how he truly felt about the situation. How he felt he was betrayed. How he didn’t know what to do with his life and that everything was over. Nairo expressed to me how everything in Zack’s twitlonger was a lie. Nairo told me he was asleep when Zack randomly touched him and that he was paralyzed and didn’t know what to do and that he let Zack proceed. This is completely contradictory to what Zack said in the above statement. On this account, Nairo is lying and Tamim and Lima got their information from Nairo and framed it as coming from zack. Nairo told me the same exact wording that Tamim and Lima put into the TL which means they got this information from Nairo and twisted it to fit their narrative. All of tamim’s allegations are hearsay and assumptions.
This is the entire truth of the situation. It was never ever about “cancelling” Nairo. It was all about seeing Zack growth as a person which he has shown. I never condoned any of the actions of what Zack, Nairo, or Ally have done. I was never complicit in their relationships either, I just felt trapped the entire time. Zack to me is one of my closest friends and I will always support him behind his truth
I do deeply want to apologize for not saying any of this information prior. It was me who made poor judgement on the entirety of the situation and I will gladly accept the consequences. I am not asking for forgiveness, I wanted you guys to know the full truth. I could have been a better friend and role model in the Smash community and I will learn from my mistakes for this to never happen again. I am very sorry that I betrayed your guys' trust and maybe that will never come back. If you all choose to forgive me, I will work my absolute hardest to help make the Smash community the safe space that we all want it to be. For all of this, I am deeply sorry. Ill be taking a break from social media for a few days since this has been very overwhelming for me. Thank you everyone for listening.