Steven R. August 17, 2019
The controversy surrounding Ninjas in Pyjamas is far from over.
In an explosive thread on Twitter, former NiP player Robin “Fifflaren” Johansson leveled a series of allegations against Emil “HeatoN” Christensen regarding his time spent managing the team. The posts from Fifflaren follow weeks of ugly reports about the organization’s bad business practices.
“We thought you were different, we thought since you used to be a player yourself and have been screwed by orgs before that you would understand Heaton, but you and Chahine Hicham are just the same,” Fifflaren said. “Liars, cheaters, and crooks.”
From there Fifflaren unloads a number of accusations towards Heaton, stating he betrayed the trust of the NiP players and worked with ownership to withhold the players’ money. He also includes a pair of emails which appear to show Heaton strategizing against the players regarding their contracts and the distribution of money generated from the sale of in-game stickers.
Fifflaren closes by suggesting that more information is coming and that “the truth will come out.”
“Don’t worry. I got everything,” Fifflaren said.
The Ninjas in Pyjamas organization has been under fire since July, when Fifflaren opened up on his time with their iconic Counter-Strike: Global Offensive team. Though the team enjoyed astonishing competitive success from 2012 to 2014, alleged shady practices by the ownership resulted in the players receiving little for their success.
In the days that followed, former NiP players Richard “Xizt” Landström, Adam “friberg” Friberg, and Mikail “Maikelele” Bill stepped forward to corroborate these claims. Many of the other members of the team during that time, including Christopher “GeT_RiGhT” Alesund, Patrik “f0rest” Lindberg, and coach Faruk “pita” Pita, are currently signed to NiP.
The organization released a statement in response to Fifflaren, pointing towards the previous ownership group for the players’ woes. Fifflaren responded by suggesting that the new ownership also had a hand in the issues, which was followed by a number of former NiP staff coming forward in agreement.
Though a number of former NiP executives have been swept up in the scandal, HeatoN has avoided any blame to this point. The former Counter-Strike 1.6 star who helped spark NiP’s rise with wins in some of the largest events of the game’s early history transitioned into a management role with the team in 2012, returning to the spotlight when NiP became established in Global Offensive.
He was involved in a court case in 2015 alongside fellow NiP owners involving accounting and tax violations, which saw him fined and sentenced to probation. He formally departed the organization in 2018.
Heaton responded to Fifflaren with a short statement on Twitter.
“I feel very sad now when a lot of untrue accusations is circling around,” HeatoN said. “Stay tuned for my story, it has papers from the Swedish court to back it up.”