On February 14, a player was exposed for live stream cheating, which resulted in the first NA open qualification for the BLAST.tv Paris Major being abandoned.

The player ‘pawt’ of team Fun MIx was banned by Gamers Club, the venue hosting the competition, prior to the start of the match versus Strife Esports in the qualifier’s Round of 16. Before it was made clear that the gamer had been banned for cheating, there was confusion. The battle was about to begin streaming on Dust2.us’ Twitch account when the scene was captured live. After the event, Gamers Club disqualified Fun MIx and overturned the team’s Round of 32 victory over goomba stomp. Goomba stomp later fell to Strife by a score of 16-2.

The event complicates an already difficult qualifying round on a platform that most players in North America are unfamiliar with. The qualifiers for the forthcoming Major will be held throughout South America and North America thanks to a partnership between BLAST and Gamers Club, which bills itself as “the biggest esports platform in Brazil.” The bulk of open qualifiers for international events are conducted on FACEIT, which recently amalgamated with ESL, BLAST’s main rival, after the two businesses were acquired by the Savvy Gaming Group, which is funded by the Saudi Arabian government, in January 2022 for a combined $1.5 billion.

Only 36 teams signed up for the first North American qualifier, which was notable for its low turnout. From the open qualifiers, eight teams will advance to the closed stage, where they will compete against groups like Complexity, MIBR, and Evil Geniuses.