Alex Bertoncini Top 8s StarCityGames Invitational

  • #1
    Saw he top 8ed some other SCG Open recently, and now this. I wonder how close of an eye the judges and streamers will have on him during top 8 tomorrow.

    I'm not entirely 100% on what happened to get him banned in the first place. I know he was caught making mistakes/cheating in an SCG Invi that he won, actually almost exactly two years ago. To be honest I don't know whether the context made it appear like it was intentional cheating or actual mistakes.

    I guess I just made this thread to discuss any thoughts people have on this. I've been playing Magic for over half of my life (13 years) and have always enjoyed spectating the highest levels of competitive magic - Pro Tours, Worlds, SCG Invis, etc. In all that time, I don't think I've ever seen anything quite like this. Guy wins an Invi, gets banned almost immediately after, controversy stirs around him keeping the HUGE prize pool he won (bigger than SCG Invi winners get now I believe), and now, he is back and in the top 8 of the same event he won that got him banned almost two years ago to the day.
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  • #2
    http://mixedknuts.wordpress.com/2011/12/12/unlocking-the-cheats-of-scg-player-of-the-year-alex-bertoncini/

    Just putting this here for context.

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  • #3
    I mean, the guy did his time and I feel like he should be allowed to play just like everyone else. If he is able to make top 8 of an SCG Invitational under what I'm assuming is heavy judge surveillance on his play thanks to his history of cheating, then he probably earned his top 8 legitimately.

    What I don't appreciate is when he does things like this:

    http://www.starcitygames.com/events/coverage/2301_legacy_open_top_8_profiles.html

    Look at his profile. His "sorry, not sorry" attitude is what really irks me. It makes it really hard to support, let alone stand, the guy. I'm personally rooting for anybody but Alex tomorrow.
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  • #4
    I wouldn't be surprised if he cheated during matches throughout the tournament.
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  • #5
    Quote from Grand Superior
    I mean, the guy did his time and I feel like he should be allowed to play just like everyone else.


    The thing is, SCG and Wizards are not courts of law. They're businesses with the eye on the bottom line, and tournaments are advertisements for the game.

    As such, it is in both wizards and SCG's interest not to let someone like him play (in sanctioned events) at all. The negative publicity he generates for the game far outweighs the negative publicity that would be generated if SCG or Wizards just bans him for the rest of his life.

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  • #6
    Quote from mondu_the_fat
    The thing is, SCG and Wizards are not courts of law. They're businesses with the eye on the bottom line.

    ALL tournaments are advertisements for the game.

    As such, it is in both wizards and SCG's interest not to let someone like him play at all. The negative publicity he generates for the game far outweighs the negative publicity that would be generated if SCG or Wizards just bans him for the rest of his life.



    I would say that it does tarnish the reputation of the tournament knowing how much he cheated before and how easily he could do it again. Hence if SCG comes to MPLS again and he were to play I'd be a bit apprehensive about signing up for the legacy portion.
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  • #7
    Congrats to him, great player Wink
  • #8
    Quote from Grand Superior
    I mean, the guy did his time and I feel like he should be allowed to play just like everyone else. If he is able to make top 8 of an SCG Invitational under what I'm assuming is heavy judge surveillance on his play thanks to his history of cheating, then he probably earned his top 8 legitimately.

    What I don't appreciate is when he does things like this:

    http://www.starcitygames.com/events/coverage/2301_legacy_open_top_8_profiles.html

    Look at his profile. His "sorry, not sorry" attitude is what really irks me. It makes it really hard to support, let alone stand, the guy. I'm personally rooting for anybody but Alex tomorrow.

    I could see why you hated it, but I thought it was kind of funny. It takes a certain type of person to be in your face about the fact that he cheated. It may not be the classiest thing in the world, but I would rather have him acknowledge that he was a cheater than try to sweep it under the rug. Gotta admit, it's kind of nice to have a bad guy to root against.
  • #9
    If you catch him cheating against you it's a free win. So more power to him. I don't think he would be stupid enough to try it again. For the next 5 years people that hate him will be looking for an excuse to ban him in every pro match he plays.
  • #10
    Quote from mondu_the_fat
    The thing is, SCG and Wizards are not courts of law. They're businesses with the eye on the bottom line, and tournaments are advertisements for the game.

    As such, it is in both wizards and SCG's interest not to let someone like him play (in sanctioned events) at all. The negative publicity he generates for the game far outweighs the negative publicity that would be generated if SCG or Wizards just bans him for the rest of his life.


    You bring up an interesting point. I am actually a law student IRL, yet I couldn't agree more with this.

    People like him make me not want to play the game. Period. I think that is a base premise to start with that, for me at least, is a fact.

    Luckily, I haven't seen too many people like him when I go to tournaments. If people like him were more prevalent in our community, I would seriously consider not travelling to tournaments for fun and spending my whole weekend playing MTG events. Instead I would probably just play much more on modo.

    Indeed, this is not a court of law, especially in the sense that we are not dealing with a serious fundamental right that courts of law deal with - like the right to NOT be incarcerated in a prison, for example. Here, we are dealing with the privilege to be a guest at a competitive trading card game tournament; to have the opportunity to play in a Magic tournament hosted by a private party.

    When you look at it from that perspective, he should just be perma-banned. And it really doesn't help his cause that he is additionally a notorious trash talker and basically an *******. I don't agree with the "its neat to have a villain in the MTG scene" sentiment either. This isn't the World Wrestling Federation.
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  • #11
    http://www.starcitygames.com/events/coverage/2334_invitational_open_top_8_profil.html

    He's listing "Invitational Winner" as one of his previous magic accomplishments. If you think he's even remotely repentant, then you're living in a ridiculously biased world.

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  • #12
    He is pushing the bad boy image. Everyone hates him, roots against him. He's almost the heel if this was an MtG edition of the WWE or some such.

    I don't approve of cheating in any way, and his prior ban was for deplorable reasons. His next stop should be a lifetime ban if he does it again?
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  • #13
    http://www.starcitygames.com/events/coverage/2334_invitational_open_top_8_profil.html

    He's listing "Invitational Winner" as one of his previous magic accomplishments. If you think he's even remotely repentant, then you're living in a ridiculously biased world.


    It doesn't matter. He served his time fair and square. He deserves a chance again.
  • #14
    I'm not really understanding what he's done that merits deserving another chance?

    Having pros that cheat and are unrepentant about it makes the game less legitimate. What does he bring to the table that having him around is a good thing? I'm not seeing it.
  • #15
    Quote from Dakhwon
    I'm not really understanding what he's done that merits deserving another chance?

    Having pros that cheat and are unrepentant about it makes the game less legitimate. What does he bring to the table that having him around is a good thing? I'm not seeing it.


    Well, Alex isn't a pro. As far as I know, he's never been to a pro tour.
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  • #16
    Quote from Meowmeowzor
    It doesn't matter. He served his time fair and square. He deserves a chance again.


    I want to disagree. He's a serial cheater; probably the most prolific cheater in professional MTG. Yet there have not been any real punishments for him other than a slap on the wrist.
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  • #17
    Quote from DrewReaLee
    I want to disagree. He's a serial cheater; probably the most prolific cheater in professional MTG. Yet there have not been any real punishments for him other than a slap on the wrist.


    I think Mike Long receives that dubious honor and Mark Rosewater himself pushed for Long to be in the Magic Hall of Fame because his contribution to the game was "the player everyone loves to hate." Mike Long was skilled, but he skirted the fine line between cheating and being legit.

    Bertoncini is just the SCG heel.
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  • #18
    Having these threads pop up every single time the guy plays Magic isnt really accomplishing anything. Its not like the DCI is going to reban him simply based on public opinion.

    He certainly seems to be a narcissist, he's most likely thriving on all of this attention.

    Just ignore the guy. Certainly if you see him playing you should try to look out for any possible signs of cheating, but aside from that just dont acknowledge him. Act as if he doesnt exist.

    Maybe he'll get the point.
  • #19
    Quote from DrewReaLee
    I want to disagree. He's a serial cheater; probably the most prolific cheater in professional MTG. Yet there have not been any real punishments for him other than a slap on the wrist.


    The punishment was according to the procedures normally done with cheaters. I do not know what else you are asking for. If he cheats again (he won't), then he will probably get banned permanently.
  • #20
    Quote from urafever
    Well, Alex isn't a pro. As far as I know, he's never been to a pro tour.


    And?
    So what?
    Still not seeing a reason why the game is better for letting him back in. Did MTG become a charity when I wasn't looking? People keep saying he deserves another chance... I am still asking: why?
  • #21
    This guy is a disgrace and allowing him to play undermines the sanctity of putting a piece of cardboard onto a table and turning it sideways.
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  • #22
    Quote from Dakhwon
    And?
    So what?
    Still not seeing a reason why the game is better for letting him back in. Did MTG become a charity when I wasn't looking? People keep saying he deserves another chance... I am still asking: why?


    Don't tell me you're a saint who hasn't done a bad deed in his life. I bet you've done quite a few,and expected forgiveness in a lot of them.
  • #23
    Wow, so many of these responses show how some of you guys take this GAME way too seriously.

    He isn't tarnishing the face of the community. Know why? Because if you go up to almost any Magic player and ask who he is, they'll have no idea at all. What most of you don't realize is that this stuff will fly by the vast majority of the community without them knowing a single thing about it. You all forget that even though there are a lot of us that follow and play the game at competitive levels, we do not make up the majority of the players at all.

    If anything, the way that so many people are reacting shows how toxic this community can be at times. I sure hope that none of you do something wrong in this game and ever hope to get back into the community, because you'll probably get this same treatment. I'm not calling anyone to defend him, he can do that on his own by showing he's learned anything if he has. And no, you can't "know" that he's learned his lesson or not based off your impression of his comments; and your impression of him is already tainted to begin with regardless of what he says or does.

    How about some of you in the community take a look at how immaturely you're reacting to this stuff about him? Why don't we show that we can act a lot more civilly about it as opposed to acting like children?
  • #24
    Well, when money, time, and passion is involved, this kinda behavior against AB is expected. There is no "way too seriously" when money is involved. This matter is serious and should be dealt seriously.

    If someone makes something wrong, I expect that person to be punished. Lot of people who play that level never cheats or do that level of wrongness. Dunno why treat it like religion and calling everyone sinner.

    However, he already got punished. We can all argue about the lightness or harshness of the punishment, but as of now he paid the price from his wrongdoings. Hopefully he really learned his lesson like some other players who did wrong things and rehabilitated although his attitude isn't helping much in this.
  • #25
    Quote from KaristaDispel


    I think Mike Long receives that dubious honor and Mark Rosewater himself pushed for Long to be in the Magic Hall of Fame because his contribution to the game was "the player everyone loves to hate." Mike Long was skilled, but he skirted the fine line between cheating and being legit.

    Bertoncini is just the SCG heel.


    Totally forgot about Mike. I think Alex is quickly becoming the new "made for TV villain" because he is just that arrogant guy that plays to win no matter how much he tarnishes his image.

    Quote from Meowmeowzor
    The punishment was according to the procedures normally done with cheaters. I do not know what else you are asking for. If he cheats again (he won't), then he will probably get banned permanently.


    It seems Alex has not been punished enough at least in my humble opinion. You don't become an infamous cheater just by cheating once. He has been caught or at the very least suspected of numerous occasions and yet he's only had one real suspension.

    His attitude isn't helping his case either. During his suspension, it was extended because he made fun of some players during a live stream. He's not improving and it's inevitable until he's suspended again.
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