Update September 18, 10:00am EST / 3:00pm BST:
Carlos’ account has removed all mention of G2 and he has released an apologetic statement, acknowledging that his actions have “created confusion about what I stand for”.
He went on: “It has always been my consistent target to stand for absolute equality of opportunity regardless of who you are or where you come from, which is what gaming is all about. Make no mistake, my life was full of learnings and I had my fair share of situations I got into in the past. I failed to read this room right, feel terrible about the discussions it created and will stand up and accept the consequences in full.”
The original article follows.
G2 Esports’ CEO Carlos ‘Ocelote’ Santiago has doubled down amid backlash for partying with Andrew Tate, saying that he is entitled to hang out with “whoever the f**k I want”.
G2 are one of the esports community’s biggest names, fielding teams in some of competitive gaming’s biggest titles. Among other games, they currently have players competing in League of Legends, Valorant, CS:GO and Rainbow Six Siege.
The org’s size and reputation was one of the reasons for the condemnation of its CEO, Carlos ‘Ocelote’ Santiago, when footage was shared of him partying with Andrew Tate on September 17.
Tate is a controversial internet figure, recently banned from YouTube, Facebook and other platforms as a result of his ‘misogynistic’ views.
Ocelote was pictured celebrating G2’s recent success with Tate, lighting cigars with sparklers amid a sea of smiles.
G2’s Ocelote doubles down on friendship with Andrew Tate despite backlash
However, in spite of the backlash he and the org received, Ocelote has now doubled down on his friendship with Tate, hitting out at those criticizing him.
In a late September 17 tweet, he said: “nobody will ever be able to police my friendships. I draw my line here. I party with whoever the fuck I want”.
Responses to the tweet were generally negative, with many disappointed at the lack of contrition on display from an incredibly senior figure in the world of esports.
Among the critics was Medic, a LEC caster. He said: “There’s no way you didn’t predict this reaction. You posted a video partying with a known misogynist who calls women property. It’s misguided at best and engagement bait most likely. This is f**king low man, party with who you want but expect people to judge you for it.”
Others accused Ocelote of hypocrisy for partying with a figure accused of misogynism, just days after announcing an all-female League of Legends roster.
Another esports figure, Mitch Leslie of the Overwatch League, said: “I mean no one is policing you brother – I thank that most ppl feel like your choice of friends gives at least a rough indication of your values and they’re just sharing their unsolicited opinions about it.”
Despite the growing response, Ocelote appears to be firm in his rejection of the criticism.