One of the greatest and most famous eSports players, BoxeR (aka Yo Hwan Lim) is leaving eSports in a decision that some in South Korea are calling a full retirement.
Since August 2012, BoxeR has been coaching Starcraft II team SK Telecom T1. The team hasn’t exactly been racking up the wins. According to SK Telecom T1, BoxeR is stepping down because he wants to focus on getting healthy (he’s had a shoulder injury).
However, there’s speculation that this move is a de facto retirement because he is, as of posting, not going to another team.
Joonang Daily Sports (via tipster Sang) believes BoxeR’s decision was due to stress he got as coach. SK Telecom T1 came in fourth place during the last StarCraft II season, and fan reaction hasn’t exactly been nice.
An unnamed source told Joonang Daily Sports, “He has been in the eSports industry for 14 years and is exhausted. He is likely to seek something not eSports related in the future.”
There’s also speculation that BoxeR is resigning so he can concentrate on getting married. He has been dating Korean actress Ka Yeon Kim, who recently said she would marry BoxeR should her new TV drama get a viewership of 35 per cent. How romantic!
BoxeR was the highest paid eSports gamer with a $US100,000 salary, boasts an impressive winning percentage of 58.4 per cent, and was so important to eSports that during his compulsory military service, the Korean Air Force created an eSports team just for him. Then, there’s the countless commercial, TV, and movie appearances he’s made over the years.
Whatever BoxeR’s reasons are for stepping down, hopefully he’s happy and is able to get, from the sound of it, some much needed rest.
임요환, SK텔레콤 떠난다 [Via Fomos — Thanks Sang!]