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Smash Bros. pro retires after admitting to relationship with teen gamer
He called it a ‘stupid mistake.’
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate professional gamer Elliot Carroza-Oyarce is retiring from the esports after reports of his relationship with a teen competitor were confirmed. Carroza-Oyarce, who professionally goes by Ally, confirmed the allegations on Twitter last Wednesday, along with his plans to retire.
The 28-year-old initially denied allegations of his relationship with Zack Lauth, a fellow esports pro who may have been 16 at the time of the relationship. Lauth, who goes by Captain Zack, is currently 17. The young Bayonetta player was tight-lipped about the allegations when they initially came to light in March. Eventually, he admitted that they were true, leading Carroza-Oyarce—who also denied initial reports—to announce his intent to retire.
Reports of a relationship initially came to light when Tamim Omary, a fellow Smash player, made allegations via Twitter.
Omary’s allegations have been deleted, but reportedly included screenshots of Carroza-Oyarce admitting to the relationship on Discord. The Smash pro would go on to deny the allegations entirely, before eventually coming clean. The timeline of the relationship is unclear, but it seems likely that Lauth was 16 when they dated, while Carroza-Oyarce was around 27. In Carroza-Oyarce’s native Canada, the age of consent is 16. In Lousiana, Lauth’s home state, however, the age of consent is 17.
The rumors, which had largely fallen from the gaming community’s radar, abruptly resurfaced at the end of June. On June 29, Lauth posted a photo from his Florida hotel room, apparently confirming the allegations. “Tamim was telling the truth,” a piece of paper reads in the photo, along with a date and time stamp. Lauth closed his Twitter account shortly following the post, but a redditor saved and shared the image.
Carroza-Oyarce spoke out after returning from the 2019 CEO tournament in Daytona, Florida, where Lauth was also competing. On July 3, Carroza-Oyarce tweeted a statement admitting to the relationship. “I’m going to admit I dated Zack,” the statement reads. “I didn’t do him any wrongs but it was a stupid mistake regardless and I’m really sorry for not saying it until now. I was really scared.”
In the statement, Carroza-Oyarce went on to apologize to Omary for lying about the relationship. He then announced his retirement from Smash.
“Sorry to everyone I disappointed,” the statement concludes. “Sorry Canada.”
Sorry for the wait, I only got home yesterday night from CEO. Here are both my statements for everything that I had to address. I won't be active on Twitter and I'm retiring from Smash as of now. I'm extremely afraid but it has to be done. I'm really fucking sorry to everyone. pic.twitter.com/goxFbpRo3T— Ally (@AllyUltimate) July 4, 2019
The day following Carroza-Oyarce’s admission, Super Smash Bros. Wii U ranking initiative PGStats announced its intent to consider removing Carroza-Oyarce from its Smash player rankings. On July 5, the SSB Code of Conduct Panel revealed a recommendation that Carroza-Oyarce receive a lifetime ban from Smash competitions. Previously, the group saw a competitor banned from several tournaments after his own inappropriate sexual relationship with a minor was revealed.
Lauth returned to Twitter on July 3 with a short statement on the matter. “Thank you to everyone who reached out to me I love you all,” he wrote. “Regarding that ‘situation’, please don’t bring it up to me! It’s been taken care of, and I would like EVERYONE to move forward.”
Hi guys im back <3. Thank you to everyone who reached out to me I love you all. Regarding that "situation", please don't bring it up to me! It's been taken care of, and I would like EVERYONE to move forward. Thank you!— CaptainZack (@CaptainZack_) July 4, 2019
Lauth and Carroza-Oyarce did not return the Daily Dot’s request for comment.
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Nahila Bonfiglio reports on geek culture and gaming. Her work has also appeared on KUT's Texas Standard (Austin), KPAC-FM (San Antonio), and the Daily Texan.