The entire roster of players in popular DOTA 2 team Newbee has been permanently banned for life from all Valve games amid allegations of match-fixing.
The players (Xu “Moogy” Han, Yin “Aq” Rui, Wen “Wizard” Lipeng, Yan “Waixi” Chao, and Zeng “Faith” Hongda) will no longer be able to play any Valve games at a competitive level.
This is a major upset for a team that have previously competed – and won – The International, the highest level of DOTA 2 competitive play. Now, they will be unable to participate in any future competitions in any form.
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Why did Newbee get banned from DOTA 2?
Newbee was banned from DOTA 2 and all Valve games for match-fixing. Valve’s decision follows similar efforts from official DOTA eSports bodies.
Allegations of this date back to February 2020, when they were accused of suspicious activity in a match against Team Avengerls as part of the Chinese qualifiers for the StarLadder ImbaTV Dota 2 Minor.
In May, both ImbaTV and the Chinese Dota 2 Association formally cut ties with the team and several other players involved in the scandal. The move to ban all players involves from all Valve games is the final step in removing them from the game.
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Why ban players for match-fixing?
It appears that both Valve and eSports bodies take the threat of match-fixing very seriously. A permanent ban sends the clear message that this alleged behaviour is entirely inappropriate and will not be tolerated.
With eSports still very much in its infancy, it’s important to avoid any hit to the community’s credibility that could come from claims that matches are being staged or that the competition is unfair.
Thus, Newbee and other players have been permanently banned, ensuring that they won’t be able to return to Valve games in future, bringing with them the negative associations that accompany a match-fixing scandal.