from Susanne Braun
Hearthstone pro Janne "Savjz" Mikkonen had not received an invitation for the Hearthstone brawl that the Blizzard people hosted. Savjz and his wife Christina then suspected that he had been blacklisted for comments made during their mass layoffs in February 2019 and after. Blizzard's staff now say that's not the case. Only an unsigned declaration of secrecy is said to have ensured that Savjz missed the tournament.

In the past few days, a half-grown drama has apparently played out in the Hearthstone professional scene, but now it seems that it has been solved. The trouble started with tweets from Christina Mikkonen, the wife of the Finnish Hearthstone professional and esports athlete Janne "Savjz" Mikkonen. Christina believed that Blizzard's people blacklisted Savjz so that he could no longer participate in official tournaments. That happened because Savjz's participation would be intolerable because of his wife – so they were told.

The background to this: Christina Mikkonen had worked at Blizzard until February 2019 and was dismissed as part of the restructurings scheduled by Activision Blizzard. A few months later, a position in Hearthstone (buy now for € 0.00)Team opened and a Blizzard community manager tweeted about it, Christina approached Hearthstone CM Chris Attalus with words that say so much whether Attalus would damnedly piss her off – but it did work for the advertised position not about Christina's old job, but about another one who had not been the victim of the job cuts. And because of Christina's outrage expressed on Twitter, Savjz was blacklisted again. The fact that Janne was unable to take part in events because of his wife's words would also have had a psychological impact on him.

But now the problem seems to be solved. In a Blizzard statement that the authors of Essentiallysports it is said that Savjz did not sign a confidentiality agreement and was therefore not invited. This incident would have nothing to do with his wife or some kind of blacklist, just with his missing Kaiser Wilhelm on a piece of paper. Usually, professional players experience things at events that they are not allowed to talk about at a certain point in time (embargo). That is why you have to sign a confidentiality agreement (NDA) at the beginning of an event or even weeks in advance.

The situation now seems clear, Savjz also tweeted that he can participate in upcoming events again and that his wife can accompany him as a guest. Whether all of this was really as described is of course another matter.

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