When Evo 2020 was canceled due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, an online event aptly titled Evo Online was announced in its stead, which was supposed to begin tomorrow. Now, that event has been abruptly canceled as well in the wake of sexual abuse allegations levied at now-former Evo CEO Joey “MrWizard” Cuellar. A statement issued by the organization announced the event cancellation, in addition to announcing that Cuellar “will no longer be involved with Evo in any capacity” and that company co-founder Tony Cannon has assumed the CEO position.
— EVO (@EVO) July 3, 2020
On July 1, amid a recent wave of players in the fighting game community speaking out against their mental and sexual abusers, Mikey “CrackPr0n” Pham came forward with allegations against Joey Cuellar from when Pham was 17 years old. Cuellar, while not directly corroborating the allegations, apologized and said he “never meant to hurt anyone.” Nonetheless, game developers pulled their games out of Evo Online en masse after the allegations, including Bandai Namco, Capcom, Mane6, and NetherRealm Studios.
The ultimate cancellation of the entire event by organizers frankly just makes good sense at this point, though it is deeply unfortunate for a wide variety of reasons. Hopefully Evo can preserve its reputation with Tony Cannon at the helm.