South Korean League of Legends star and arguably one of the best mid laners in the scene, Gwak "Bdd" Bo-seong donated 5 million South Korean Won (~ $4,100) to the National Disaster Relief Foundation to aid fight the coronavirus outbreak.
Bdd made his generous donation public this Thursday, February 27, when he posted a picture on his Twitter, showing the receipt he received after making his 5 million KRW donation to the National Disaster Relief Foundation. In the same post, Bdd explained he decided to help those fighting and aiding in the containment of the coronavirus in order to meaningfully spend his upcoming birthday and the 4th anniversary of his debut in the LCK.
Bdd will turn 21 this Sunday, March 1, which will mark his fourth anniversary of his LCK debut from March 1, 2016, when he became of age to compete at the top-tier of League of Legends esports scene. At that time, he was a member of CJ Entus, a team that later that year forfeited their CK Seed.
"I’m very happy that I can post this after winning the game. But I’m very sorry that for the first time since my debut, I can’t listen to the birthday songs my fans sing," said Bdd.
Gen.G's chief operating officer Arnold Hur replied to the bdd's Twitter post, promising that the organisation will match his donation with one of their own. The South Korean organisation also announced that its Overwatch League franchise - Seoul Dynasty, will donate all earnings from its March homestand event, as well as all revenue they will get from merchandise and in-game sales by the end of March towards fighting the COVID-19 outbreak.
Since the coronavirus outbreak started in China, the pandemic has spread like wildfire across other Asian countries, as well as Europe and the United States. Although the epicentre was in China, coronavirus has already spread to South Korea, which has over 1,700 confirmed cases with over 25,000 still undergoing examination, and 13 deaths as of Thursday, February 27.
Due to health risks coronavirus presents for the general population and the esports athletes, League Champions Korea (LCK) entered a lockdown, meaning that all LCK matches are played without a live crowd. That said, LCK is not the only esports league, which has been affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.
The Chinese League of Legends League (LPL) is currently indefinitely suspended, while other esports titles, such as Overwatch had a handful of scheduled events cancelled or rescheduled.
The long-term effects of the COVID-19 outbreak in Asia and its esports scene is still a mystery, however, there already some serious concerns with how will it affect the upcoming League of Legends World Championship, which is slated to take place in Shanghai, China later in October-November.
The Shanghai spokesperson already addressed the issue, urging every esports organiser to move from LAN events to online events, while also unveiling several steps the government will take to help to fight the outbreak. In the same press conference, he also assured everyone the preparations for the League's World Championship are moving forward and that the government are taking the needed steps to make the event safe for everyone.