The Overwatch League will shine a brighter light on its rulebreakers in 2019 with a "player discipline tracker" that will keep a running record of players who violate the league's code of conduct, and the penalties they incur. And even though the tracker just went live today, there are already seven players on it.
"As players join the Overwatch League, the league office conducts a full review of their conduct and, where appropriate, takes disciplinary action. While the league reviews each case on its own, key factors informing the level of discipline include both the severity and recency of the actions under review," the league wrote. "During the season, the league office will continue to evaluate infractions and take action as needed."
As that statement suggests, activity that occurred prior to joining the Overwatch League can still lead to sanctions, as some of the players on the list, including Shilong "Krystal" Cai (one game for account boosting) and Kelsey "Colourhex" Birse (two games for account boosting), weren't playing in the league when the infractions took place. However, "players who have previously served penalties while playing in Contenders are generally not subject to further discipline upon joining the Overwatch League," the league said.
The tracker doesn't get into the specifics of individual offenses: Riku "Ripa" Toivanen of the Los Angeles Gladiators, for instance, got a list-leading five games for "throwing matches and toxicity," which sounds like a pretty big deal, but nothing more is said about it. Nor is there any insight into how punishments are determined. But it will be useful for OWL fans who want to stay on top of league happenings—and maybe the risk of being named-and-shamed will help cut down on bad behavior, too.
The Mayhem, Spark, Charge, and Shock have all issued statements apologizing for (or at least, in the case of the Mayhem, acknowledging) their player's infractions.
Damon "Apply" Conti has been suspended for 2 games in the upcoming 2019 Overwatch League season.We respect the competitive ruling handed down from the league.December 21, 2018
pic.twitter.com/ueR46pwVLJDecember 21, 2018
We are aware that the league fined one of our players for his past conduct prior to joining our team. We want to assure our fans that we cooperated with the league in background checks of all of our players, and for this particular situation... (1/3)December 21, 2018
At the start of Season 2, Minki "Viol2t" Park will serve a 2 game suspension due to instances of account boosting before his time with the SF Shock.Park did not receive any incentives or compensation for boosting.Park would like to sincerely apologize to the Shock & his fans.December 21, 2018