A pro player preparing for the largest tournament in Apex Legends esports to date reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 today after attending an in-person boot camp in Sweden with seemingly zero safety protocols.
The boot camp, which took place at Inferno Online, a large gaming center in Stockholm, was well-documented on social media. GMT Esports and SCARZ from the EMEA region, Crazy Raccoon from APAC North, and Team Sutoraiku from APAC South were all in attendance at the boot camp, and potentially other teams as well. In photos and videos from the event, players were not wearing masks and were in close proximity to each other.
In a stream this morning, Louis “BulletL” Borg, a player for Team Sutoraiku, was asked by a viewer about the absence of Team Reignite in practice. BulletL said that Noyan “Genburten” Ozkose, a player for Team Reignite, tested positive for COVID-19: “That’s why we were all doing like COVID tests and shit, we were all worried that maybe he’d spread it or something… So yeah, it’s been an eventful morning to say the least.”
Dot Esports reached out to BulletL, Genburten, and the founder of Team Reignite, who joined the team in Stockholm, to try to confirm the report but received no response. The founder of Team Reignite seemed to refer to the test in a tweet written in Japanese, suggesting he would update fans when he knew more.
Genburten is one of the most popular players in the APAC South region, a vital part of the region’s most dominant roster. If he tests positive on Friday, April 29, he will be unable to play and the team will have to use a substitute. It’s also possible that the many players in close contact with each other during the boot camp could contract COVID-19 and be forced to sit out the tournament.
The $1 million prize pool Stockholm LAN begins on April 29, where 40 top teams from five global regions will meet for an in-person competition for the first time since 2019. Though there is no requirement for players to be vaccinated against COVID-19 to participate in the tournament, the safety protocols in place at the tournament say that players who test positive for the coronavirus can’t enter the venue.
Despite the strict rules, many players appear to be freely socializing ahead of the event.