Drama erupted at Baltimore’s Pokémon Regional when league player Isaiah Bradner was charged with cheating.
During a live stream, Bradner was seen drawing the wrong cards from his deck and, when confronted, showed his competitor a completely different card from his hand. This has divided the community and some say he blatantly cheated and should be punished – especially after lying to his competitor. Others, however, felt that he was just being pressured and accidentally messing around.
Now Bradner has come forward with his own side of the controversy.
In a TwitLonger, Bradner claimed there was “no malicious intent” in his actions.
Baltimore Regionals 2022
— Isaiah Bradner (@IsaiahBradner) September 22, 2022
Bradner responds to cheating allegations
There were two cases of possible cheating in the Baltimore Regional, leaving Bradner in hot water with the community. After a few days of silence, Bradner has decided to release a statement. He admitted that he made a “gameplay error” in both situations, but that it wasn’t done maliciously.
“During the event, I was not in a good space. I was exhausted, had sinus congestion and migraines, and was extremely anxious because of the events of my first week in college,” Bradner began.
During the stream with his friend Xander Pero, Bradner explained that Pero had asked him to play faster, raising concerns that he would be called by a judge for “slowplay.” He started playing at a much faster pace than usual, not taking the time to think about his plays.
Bradner claims that in game three, when the alleged cheating took place, his “mind was elsewhere.” When Xander confronted him for taking two items from his Irida, he claimed that he simply showed him the “first two cards” he saw in his hand, Palkia VSTAR and Cross Switcher.
“In the mentally rushed state I was in, my brain came to the conclusion that I grabbed that, so I showed them to Xander and continued with the game. You can find this clip at the link below,” Bradner said.
Irida can really grab anything! pic.twitter.com/wRhK4Q0w8S
— Jac Carter (@Jace_TCG) September 17, 2022
Bradner continued; “I had no evil intentions in this action and I am sorry for Xander for making this mistake against him. Fortunately, my mistake did not affect the match result in any way. For those who do not know, the judges judged the film and punished me with double price for the situation, it was judged as a minor gameplay flaw (skipping a step) that was escalated because it happened on stream.
The second incident Bradner raised was against Joey Rojas in round two earlier in the day. Bradner said the stories have escalated from reality at this point.
According to Bradner, he played Irida on his second and third turns. The first Irida gave him a Palkia and Capacious Bucket and the second a Palkia VSTAR and Capacious Bucket. After drawing his second Irida, Bradner got his second KO on Rojas’ Regidrago, leaving him with two Registeel and a Regieleki.
Rojas in turn attacked and did Static Shock for 100.
In turn, Bradner used Drizzile to find the supporter Melony. As he did this, Rojas looked through Bradner’s board and saw that he only had one Irida in the pile, despite having played two earlier in the round. Bradner realized he was right and offered to take an Irida from his deck. However, Rojas asked if Bradner had another Irida in his hand, which had 15 cards. Bradner saw that he did and told him he could throw it away and call a judge on his own. In response, Rojas “pressed” it wasn’t necessary.
“I’m sorry to both my opponents, everyone else in the event, and the entire Pokémon community for playing sloppy, not calling a judge, and allowing these situations to happen in the first place. To anyone who believes in me, I promise this will never happen again,” Bradner concluded.
The explanation did little to appease the Pokémon players who already believed he was deliberately trying to pull a quick one on his opponents. However, others have said that Bradner is to be believed. For now, nothing official has been done regarding Bradner’s actions at the regional.