According to several sources, Evil Geniuses neglected Kyle “Danny” Sakamaki, which contributed to his mental health issues.
Dexerto gathered this information after speaking with “several sources” within Evil Geniuses who wished to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation. They claim that the prodigy of League of Legends, Kyle ‘Danny’ Sakamaki, had a history of neglect that exacerbated his mental and physical health problems.
The ADC player regularly stunned audiences and fellow competitors with his stunning plays, but his performance in the LCS Spring Playoffs last April was especially noteworthy.
Just a few months later, during the 2022 Summer tournament, Evil Geniuses lost most of their matches and struggled against TSM and Cloud9, with Danny’s unusually bad plays puzzling many.
There was an announcement in September that Danny would be taking time off from Evil Geniuses due to mental health issues. However, it is claimed that Danny’s issues were persistent and that management had been failing to provide care, which led to the player’s mental and physical decline.
Because of this, when Danny returned to his family’s home, he was taken to the doctor to be treated for malnutrition. The LCS Players Association was contacted by Evil Geniuses staff and players about Danny’s health, according to Dexerto sources.
Evil Geniuses initially supported Danny’s stress-prone condition, which the esports organization was aware of when it signed him. Initially, the organization “did what it could to support it,” a source told Dexerto. “Stress made a lot of his issues worse, so they hired a coach to help him,” she continued.
The source said Evil Geniuses “seemed less and less interested in helping him cope with the pressure” and hoped the problem would go away despite players’ and coaches’ warnings which further deteriorated Danny’s condition even further.
A conversation between Evil Geniuses CEO Nicole LaPointe Jameson and Danny, the League player who decided to take time off, reportedly resolved the situation.
A few months ago, Jameson posted a video statement to Twitter in which he made an indirect reference to the allegations surrounding Danny. The CEO stated that due to “legal employment constraints,” she was unable to provide further details about the company’s careful treatment of its athletes.
While it’s good that Danny got a much-needed break and found a good transition, the allegations will raise questions about esports competitors’ stress and workloads and whether their management supports them enough.