December 27, 2018 / 6:31 AM / 22 days ago

Team Envy boots player over comments about sports disaster

FILE PHOTO: A player holds his gaming controller as he competes in the FIFA 2018 eClub World Cup qualifiers in Paris, France, May 19, 2018. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer

Josh “Jablett” Ablett has been kicked off eSports organization Team Envy for making what the team termed “insensitive comments” related to the deaths of 96 people and the injuries of hundreds more at a soccer match in Sheffield, England, in 1989.

During what appeared to be a group chat, one person referred to “the 96,” referring to those killed in a human crush of people in standing room areas on April 15, 1989, at Hillsborough Stadium. Another 766 people were injured in what is still known as the worst disaster in British sports.

Jablett’s response to the reference was “(Expletive) the 96,” and he added that he would form a FIFA team that would reference the tragedy.

A screenshot of those messages was tweeted by Freelance Esports Coordinator Dean Coombes. The tweet has since been deleted.

On Wednesday, Team Envy effectively fired Jablett, saying his contract “has been terminated immediately.”

The organization said it “takes pride in promoting friendly and safe gaming competition across the globe” and “takes any insensitive comments or behavior by our players and staff seriously.”

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