Faze Clan countersues Tfue

The esports organization alleges that pro Fortnite player Turner Tenney has caused it "serious damage."

Corinne Reichert Senior Editor
Corinne Reichert (she/her) grew up in Sydney, Australia and moved to California in 2019. She holds degrees in law and communications, and currently writes news, analysis and features for CNET across the topics of electric vehicles, broadband networks, mobile devices, big tech, artificial intelligence, home technology and entertainment. In her spare time, she watches soccer games and F1 races, and goes to Disneyland as often as possible.
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Faze Clan is countersuing Turner "Tfue" Tenney, the esports company's CEO confirmed Thursday. It alleges the pro Fortnite player made over $20 million from streaming the game, as well as from gaming endorsements and sponsorships, The Verge reported.

Tenney, a 21-year-old pro gamer, originally filed a lawsuit against Faze Clan back in May, alleging the company restricted his business opportunities with an "oppressive, onerous and one-sided" contract. He also claimed Faze Clan failed to pay him his share of sponsorship earnings, and took around 80% of his earnings.

Faze Clan submitted a complaint in the Southern District of New York, CEO Lee Trink said, because "Tenney has caused us serious damage and stands to do much more."

Trink said Tenney was 20 years old when he signed the three-year rookie gamer contract, and "under Faze Clan's guidance, Tenney started having tremendous success." The esports organization then offered to renegotiate the contract as his popularity grew, but Tenney rejected all offers including "a seven-figure salary bonus and no revenue split for Faze Clan at all," the CEO said.

"Despite how we valued Tenney as one of our rising stars, it became clear he did not want real negotiations," Trink said. "He simply wants to take the knowledge Faze Clan has imparted to him and the audience we've helped him build and compete against us."

Faze Clan's complaint alleges Tfue breached his contract by publicly disparaging the company, stealing confidential information, interfering with contracts and business relationships at Faze Clan and advocating for other streamers to leave and compete against the organization.

It wants compensation for services and damages, as well as injunctive relief, The Verge said.

At the time of Tenney's lawsuit, Faze Clan said in a tweet it was "shocked and dismayed" by the lawsuit.

"In fact, we've collected a total of only $60,000 from our partnership, while Tfue has earned millions as a member of the Faze Clan," the company said. "We're proud of what we've accomplished together over the past year with Turner and will continue to support him."

Fortnite, one of the most popular free-to-play games on consoles ever, launched in 2018 and became a cultural phenomenon, raking in $3 billion for developer Epic Games across all platforms last year.

"In no uncertain terms, these gamers are artists, entertainers and content creators -- they perform, they act, they direct, they edit and they stream," Turner's lawyers wrote in the complaint, filed in May in Los Angeles Superior Court.

Tenney didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

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