First reported by ABC Australia back on September 23rd of last month, it was said that an Overwatch team was caught in an “organised crime” scandal, alongside the then reported Counter-Strike: Global Offensive betting crack-down around Australia. Just three days ago, it was made public by theScore Esports that the organisation involved in the Overwatch controversy is a team that goes by the name of Melbourne Mavericks. Outside of “theScore Esports” report, there is no concrete confirmation that the Melbourne Mavericks are indeed the team under investigation for these allegations. This report is to provide further information on the situation.
Little detail was released in the initial report by ABC Australia, with the opening statement stating “The force’s Sporting Integrity Intelligence Unit has received reports of match fixing in other Counter-Strike: Global Offensive games, and about organised crime links to the ownership of an Australian-based team that plays Overwatch in the local Contenders league. Betting anomalies have been reported on matches involving that team.”
At the time of the release, speculation had started to rise around the Overwatch Contenders community as to who the team could be. But it’s now been made clear via a theScore Esports video called “This Might be the Shadiest Contract in Esports” that the team involved is indeed Melbourne Mavericks.
A lot of the video is based around the shady contact that these players signed for Season 3 of the Australian Overwatch Contenders, but it also highlights how the owner, Macyn White, had allegedly been placing bets based off of pre-recorded game results that he would learn from the team after their matches.
According to Macyn White's LinkedIn profile, he had ironically worked with a betting company prior to esports as a Trader, which went by the name of BetHQ Pty Ltd. He started there back in June of 2014, until his departure in January 2016. Although it seems the company is currently in the stages of closing, according to Consumer and Business Services in South Australia. Since then he has been working as a Web Developer at Larotech.com and of course working as the sole owner of Melbourne Mavericks.
To our understanding, the Australian Overwatch Contenders matches are played a day or two prior to the general public having access to watching the live stream, which is mainly due to the broadcast being able to match up with the overseas competition timelines and receive hosts from the Overwatch League to ensure strong viewership. So with that being said, Macyn White would have known the results prior, in the scenario that his brand (Melbourne Mavericks) could organise game coverage assets to be ready and on-hand for when the matches are live for the general public.
It’s unknown how much Macyn White had allegedly been betting on matches and how much he may have received in return from said matches, but what is known is that Macyn White had a terrible contract offered to his players. His way of working had even pushed a player to their breaking point and said player officially retired from competitive play.
As per theScore Esports video, Oliver “Oily” Barker, who was a competitive player for the Melbourne Mavericks stated “He sent us contracts and we worked through them for like a week with him, but whenever we asked for something to be changed, instead of actually changing it he would just talk through why it was there. It got to the point that the season was about to start, so we just went with it.”
Following this, Oliver “Oily” Barker decided he wanted to leave and go play for another Overwatch Contenders team called Heist. Heist and Macyn White had conversations around the deal, but unfortunately it got nowhere due to Macyn White asking for a $6,000 AUD buyout fee, despite his players not being on a legitimate salary to justify the buyout.
To clarify, 3.11.3 of the Overwatch Contenders Official Rules Version 2.0 state “there is no minimum transfer fee. The maximum transfer fee will be equal to 100% of the average annual base salary plus any applicable signing bonus in the player’s Overwatch League player agreement.” With that being said, the Melbourne Maverick players were not on any set base salary, which should mean that there shouldn’t be a transfer fee at all.
Contact was lost with Macyn White for two weeks after the discussion involving Heist and so Oily decided he would play a match for Heist. Hours before his first official Contenders match with Heist, he was hit with a ‘cease and desist’ letter. Oily ultimately decided not to compete that night.
Currently this is a developing story with a lot more information to be justified. As per the ABC Australia article, this is an on-going investigation with the Victorian Police. If more information comes to our attention in the near future, we will be sure to report on it.