TSM have parted ways with Zhu ‘Keaiduo’ Xiong, a young Chinese mid laner that headlined their 2021 offseason signings, after benching the player in the middle of the spring split.
TSM is breaking away from its 2021 signing class which includes its Chinese mid laner Keaiduo, the company announced on May 2. The young star was signed in December 2021 as a part of TSM’s new look roster which included Wei ‘Shenyi’ Zi-Jie, another young Chinese player from the region’s developmental league, and a new head coach in Wong ‘Chawy’ Xing Lei.
Keaiduo played nine games for the main TSM team in the League of Legends Championship Series before going to the bench, and the Academy league, for the rest of the split. Shenyi also saw time on the bench, but made his way back to the starting roster after a short stint in LCS Academy.
TSM split with Keaiduo after controversy-packed spring split
Today we part ways with @Keaiduo7Keaiduo.
Due to the upsurge in COVID cases in China, Keaiduo will stay in NA until it is safe to return home. During that time he will continue to train with us while also receiving pay and housing.
Thank you & good luck in your future, Keaiduo. pic.twitter.com/81lZ3XBERC
— TSM FTX Report (@tsmreport) May 2, 2022
According to TSM, Keaiduo’s benching was not the result of his performance, TSM went 1-8 in his time as a starter, but more for his attitude outside of the game.
In an article for Upcomer, Chawy said that the young mid laner was benched because he locked in a champion on stage without talking to the team or coaches and when confronted about it, was “negative and disrespectful” towards the staff.
Keaiduo was also on the Academy team when his coach at the time, Zhang ‘Peter Zhang’ Yi, fled the country after allegedly acting as an agent for the Chinese and Taiwanese players he recruited for TSM, which Keaiduo may have been a part of, and took a cut of their salary among other dubious financial operations.
TSM recorded its worst split in the history of their LCS tenure in spring 2022, finishing outside of the playoffs for the first time and ending with a 5-13 record in ninth place.