It all started with a post-match interview with Hong Kong Hearthstone pro Chung “blitzchung” Ng Wai where he called for the liberation of Hong Kong from China in the midst of a massive protest going on now. In the interview, the pro player could be seen wearing a gas mask and goggles, which is the garb seen in protesters actively protesting. According to recent reports, he removed the mask and proclaimed “Liberate Hong King, a revolution of our age!” Since then, the interview has been deleted (though can still be seen below) and Blizzard has removed both the pro player’s place in the league as well as his winnings.
— 🎃 Inven Global 🎃 (@InvenGlobal) October 6, 2019
For those unaware, the Hong Kong protests have been escalating since they began in June following a proposed law calling for the extradition of criminals to mainland China to be judged. This was a cause for concern by many due to the former policy that established a “one country, two systems” agreement back in 1997 regarding Hong Kong and China. Though the bill that kickstarted this all has been suspended, the protests have continued to build in a bid for freedom and liberation for Hong Kong and its citizens.
“As you know there are serious protests in my country now. My call on stream was just another form of participation of the protest that I wish to grab more attention,” Chung mentioned in a statement. “I put so much effort in that social movement in the past few months, that I sometimes couldn’t focus on preparing my Grandmaster match. I know what my action on stream means. It could cause me lot of trouble, even my personal safety in real life. But I think it’s my duty to say something about the issue.”
Breaking: Effective immediately, Blizzard has removed Hong Kong Hearthstone player blitzchung from Hearthstone Grand Masters, rescinded all his prize money, and have suspended him from pro play for one year for his recent interview.
— Rod Breslau (@Slasher) October 8, 2019
Blizzard then posted a statement about the removal of Chung, a move that united journalists, YouTubers, and the community as a whole when regarding this as a Very Bad Move (TM). The hashtag #BoycottBlizzard is now trending with BlizzCon just weeks away. Blizzard has yet to respond to our request for comment.