Before we begin with the Overwatch League, lets first start with what Overwatch even is. In short, it is an FPS game with a couple of MOBA characteristics, developed and published by the mighty Blizzard Entertainment. It was released in May 2016 for Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The game assigns players into two teams of six, with each player selecting from a roster of over 20 “heroes”, each with a unique style of play, whose roles are divided into four general categories: Offense, Defense, Tank, and Support. It as a game based on team cooperation, to secure and defend control points on a map or escort a payload across the map in a limited amount of time. Anyway, the game is quite popular, as there are currently more than 30 million players. For more information about the game, you can check out the detailed Wikipedia article here, or visit the official website.
Overwatch League (OWL) is the premier Professional Esports League for Overwatch, organized by its developer and publisher, Blizzard Entertainment. It is the first major global esports league with city-based teams that are permanent franchises, similar to NFL, NBA, USA soccer,… The league itself is divided by the Atlantic Division(Boston Uprising, Florida Mayhem, Houston Outlaws, London Spitfire, New York Excelsior and Philadelphia Fusion) and Pacific Division(Dallas Fuel, Los Angeles Gladiators, Los Angeles Valiant, San Francisco Shock, Seoul Dynasty and Shangai Dragons). The main idea behind the conceptualization of the league was to create the world’s premier esports league, where teams and players thrive for years to come.
The Overwatch League has not even started, yet there was already a suspension. Su-Min “Sado” Kim, playing the “Tank” role for the Philadelphia Fusion, was accused and found guilty of account-boosting practice, wherein an individual is paid to increase another user’s Skill Rating. He is not allowed to play in the preseason and the first 30 matches of the season. After the suspension, Sado can resume his position on the Philadelphia Fusion roster. San Francisco Shock’s Team Manager, Maxwell “Hotaruz” Bateman was fired from NRG Esports and the San Francisco Shock franchise after sexual assault allegations.
The current twelve teams represent mostly the USA, with only a single team from Europe, China and Korea each. Each team has a roster with a minimum of 6(full team in the game) and a maximum of 12 players. There are no region locks on who can be employed where, hence why the London-based team has a squad solely comprised of Korean superstars. Player housing and training facilities are all provided by the teams itself, and must all be up to a standard set by Blizzard.
Boston Uprising – Atlantic Division
One of the first teams announced for the inaugural season of the Overwatch League were Boston Uprising, a team owned by Kraft Group, also owners or a soccer team New England Revolution and an NFL team New England Patriots. As the name suggests, they represent Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
Uprising’s roster features a range of players from a variety of nations and sporting backgrounds. They mostly all hail from very different teams, including Toronto Esports, Luminosity Gaming Evil, ROX Orcas, 123(yes, that is the name of the team), Tempo Storm, Afreeca Freecs, CONBOX, Team Singularity and RX Foxes. There are only two players who were previously on the same team, NotE and Snow, both from Luminosity, so it will be interesting to see how have the players “adapted” to their new teammates. If you take a look at the roster below, they have quite an international team, with players from South Korea, USA, Canada, Ethiopia and Denmark.
- Nam-joo “Striker” Kwon, DPS, South Korea
- Stanislav “Mistakes” Danilov, DPS, Russia
- Jonathan “DreamKazper” Sanchez, DPS, USA
- Lucas “NotE” Meissner, Flex, Canada
- Woo-yeol “Kalios” Shin, Flex, South Korea
- Yeong-jin “Gamsu” Noh, Tank, South Korea
- Mikias “Snow” Yohannes, Support, Ethiopia
- Kristian “Kellex” Keller, Support, Denmark
- Se-hyeon “Neko” Park, Support, South Korea
- Connor “Avast” Prince, Support, USA
Supporting the team will be head coach Da-hee ‘Crusty’ Park, along with assistant coaches Jackson ‘Shake’ Kaplan and Rollon ‘Mini’ Hamelin. The team will be back by an analyst Mohid ‘MrBleeple’ Asjid, As its president of gaming, Boston signed Chris “HuK” Loranger. He has been involved in the early days of Overwatch esports, was present at analyst desk for the ELEAGUE’s Overwatch Open and a member of Team Canada in last year’s Overwatch World Cup. He was a famous professional Starcraft II player, which should help with the organisation’s first steps into the world of esports.
The first Boston Uprising game is against New York Excelsior on Friday, December 8 at 21:00 EST as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will be going into the game as big underdogs, especially If we take into the consideration that the strong Excelsior team, full of South Korean stars, are coming from a total of only three teams(one player from Meta Athena, one from LW Red and seven players from LW Blue) and will have the advantage of playing longer as a team. Anyway, they have some decent players, and if everything goes as they have planned, they could form a great squad. Uprising will play another game on Saturday, depending on their result in the first match.
New York Excelsior – Atlantic Division
The New York Excelsior is the team owned by Jeff Wilpon(COO of the baseball team The New York Mets and executive vice-president of Sterling Equities, a real estate company). The team is the first ever professional esports team representing the city of New York, USA. They are one of the five teams from North America in the Overwatch League.
The New York Excelsior have signed South Korean players only, all of the Luxury Watch Blue roster, one player from LW Red and one from Meta Athena. One of the LW Blue stars, Yeon-oh “Fl0w3R” Hwang, is currently on the inactive roster as he is unable to play due to being underage (currently 17 years old, he can train with the team, but can’t compete until he is 18 years old). Once available, he will take on the DPS position. Even at the age of seventeen, Fl0w3R is already considered as one of the most versatile and well-rounded players in the game. Anway, if we take a look at the roster below, we can see they have an amazing team, full of South Korean stars, and should be able to aim for the very top.
- Park “Saebyeolbe” Jong Yeol – DPS, South Korea
- Kim “Libero” Hye Sung – DPS, South Korea
- Kim “Pine” Do Hyeon – Flex, South Korea
- Joong “Janus” Hwa – Tank, South Korea
- Dong-gyu “Mano” Kim – Tank, South Korea
- Kim “Mek0” Tae Hong – Tank, South Korea
- Bang “JJoNak” Sung-Hyeon – Support, South Korea
- Hong “ArK” Yeon Joon – Support, South Korea
The team will be managed by South Korean coaches Hyun Sang “Pavane” Yu and Hyeongseok “WizardHyeong” Kim, with the help of American assistant coach Andrew Kim. Both Pavane and WizardHyeong were part of the LW Blue before joining the NYXL. Scott ‘BEARHANDS’ Tester will act as the team’s director of player personnel.
New York Excelsior will play the first game against Boston Uprising on Friday, December 8 at 21:00 EST as part of the Overwatch League preseason. Given that they sport a better talent than Boston and that they have a squad of full of players who should know how to play together, they should be able to win the match quite easily.They will have a second game on Saturday, depending on their result. Along with London Spitfire, they should be one of the major favourites to win the Atlantic Division and are a clear playoffs candidate.
London Spitfire – Atlantic Division
As the name suggests, London Spitfire is the team representing London, United Kingdom.The team is owned by Jack Etienne, Founder and CEO of Cloud9, one of the biggest and most successful esports organization with top teams in the world’s biggest competitive games. They have years of experience in multiple games and active teams in everything from League of Legends to Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. In order to join the Overwatch League, they received multiple rounds of additional investment, so they weren’t outright bought-out by another major sports brand. They are currently the only EU-based team.
The organisation had seen large success in the early days of Overwatch, being home to one of the best rosters in North America next to EnVyUs (now Dallas Fuel). They later bought an EU team in the form of Laser Kittenz, then took in South Korean team Kongdoo Pantera and rebranded as C9 Kongdoo. Anyway, they signed up most of the South Korean superstars from two of the strongest teams from the Korean APEX League; GC Busan and their own previous team Cloud9 KongDoo. With the kind of talent this team possesses, they are the firm favourites to win the league.
- Ji-hyuk “birdring” Kim DPS, South Korea
- Dong-jun “Rascal” Kim DPS, South Korea
- Joon-yeong “Profit” Park DPS, South Korea
- Dong-Eun “Hooreg” Lee DPS, South Korea
- Jun-ho “Fury” Kim Flex, South Korea
- Seung-Hyun “WOOHYAL” Sung Flex, South Korea
- Chan-Hyung “Fissure” Baek Tank, South Korea
- Jae-hee “Gesture” Hong Tank, South Korea
- Hyeon-woo “HaGoPeun” Jo Support, South Korea
- Won-Sik “Closer” Jung Support, South Korea
- Choi-Tae “Bdosin” Seung Support, South Korea
- Jong-Seok “NUS” Kim Support, South Korea
All of the team coaching staff are coming from either GC Busan or the previous C9 team. The team will be under control by the Team Manager Seon-Woo “Claire” Jeon and Head Coach Beoum-Jun “Bishop” Lee. They can also count on the help of the two support coaches, Chang-Geun “changgoon” Park and Jeong-Min “jfeel” Kim. Team management, ownership and public relations are with Cloud9 owner Jack Etienne and Danan Flander, their General Manager.
London Spitfire will play their first game against the Los Angeles Gladiators on Thursday, December 7 at 22:00 GMT as part of the Overwatch League preseason. With the strength of their all-Korean roster, they are expected to win most of the games this season, including against the Gladiators. They will have a second game on Saturday, depending on their result. If they win, they will probably face against Seoul Dynasty, another one of the favourites to win the first season of the Overwatch League.
Florida Mayhem – Atlantic Division
The Florida Mayhem is the team representing the state of Florida, USA, and the Cities of Miami and Orlando, in the Overwatch League. The team is owned by Ben Spoont, CEO and Co-Founder of UK-based esports team Misfits, which has teams from a variety of competitive esports games including League of Legends and CS:GO. In short, Florida Mayhem are basically a rebranded Misfits Overwatch team. They have only six players(all from Misfits) and only one Head Coach, which makes them one of the smallest teams, but not the one to underestimate, as they already have a solid track record in competitive Overwatch. One of their biggest achievement last year was their amazing run the Overwatch Open, as they managed to beat outright favourites EnvYUs(now rebranded as Dallas Fuel) in the final and take the total prize of $100,00.
As mentioned before, all six members of Florida Mayhem are from their previous team Misfits, and considering the successes the team has already had in Overwatch, they should be able to cause some upset wins against bigger and stronger teams. They were also all on their respective national teams for the 2017 Overwatch World Cup, where Sweden even took the third place.
- Kevyn “TviQ” Lindström, DPS, Sweden
- Andreas “Logix” Berghmans, DPS, Belgium
- Tim “Manneten” Bylund, Flex/DPS, Sweden
- Johan “CWoosH” Klingestedt, Tank/Flex, Sweden
- Sebastian “Zebbosai” Olsson, Support, Sweden
- Aleksi “Zuppeh” Kuntsi, Support, Finland
The team is supported by the Head Coach Vytis “Mineral” Lasaitis.
The Florida Mayhem’s first game is also the very first game of the preseason, and will be played against Philadelphia Fusion on Thursday, December 7 at 7:00pm EST. If they take the win, they will play the second game on Saturday. Misfits roster looks stronger on paper and they should be able to continue their successes in the Overwatch scene, and secure the win against Fusion, but we will have to wait and see how much the roster is shaken up in preparation for the inaugural season.
Houston Outlaws – Atlantic Division
The Houston Outlaws is the team representing Houston, Texas, USA, in the Overwatch League. The team is owned by Hector Rodriguez, Owner and CEO of OpTic Gaming, a long-running esports team based in the USA. They are successful in Call of Duty, Halo, Gears of War, and Counter-Strike, with a total prize earning to date of almost a million dollars. Even they are quite successful in other esports titles, OpTic never had an Overwatch roster prior to the Overwatch League. Rather than picking up superstar players from South Korea, like many other teams, Houston Outlaws picked a mix of North American and Europe players.
Most of these players once played together as FNRGFE(team started by ex-Fnatic, NRG eSports, and Gale Force eSports players searching for a new team). Rawkus and SPREE were formerly of FaZe Clan, and LiNkzr, Mendokusaii and JAKE were DPS players for Team Giganti, Cloud9 and LG Evil respectively. They also signed up several members of the USA national squad from the 2017 Overwatch World Cup. They did great against the mighty Korean team at World Cup 2017, but it doesn’t make them exactly the outright favourites to win the league.
- Matt “Clockwork” Dias, DPS, USA
- Jiri “LiNkzr” Masalin, DPS, Finland
- Jake “JAKE” Lyon, DPS, USA
- Lucas “Mendokusaii” Håkansson, DPS, Sweden
- Matt “coolmatt69″ Iorio, Flex, USA
- Alexandre “SPREE” Vanhomwegen, Flex, Belgium
- Austin “Muma” Wilmot, Tank, USA
- Daniel “Boink” Pence, Support, USA
- Christopher “Bani” Benell, Support/Flex, Canada
- Shane “Rawkus” Flaherty, Support, USA
The Houston Outlaws roster is backed by extremely well-chosen support staff, including head coach Tae-Yeong “TaiRong” Kim, who previously led South Korea to victory in the first Overwatch World Cup. He can count on the support of the two other coaches, Hyeon-woo ‘HyeonWoo’ Kim and Adam ‘MESR’ De La Torre. Mat “flame” Rodriguez was chosen as a General Manager.
The first Houston Outlaws game is against Dallas Fuel on Thursday, December 7 at 18:00 CT as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will be heading into the match as an underdog, but they will be confident of causing an upset, especially as there is not a lot of motivational factors in the preseason. They will have a second game on Saturday, depending on their result. The Outlaws have managed to obtain have strong players, which are backed by Korean management and with decent investment squad behind them and should be able to cause some upset wins against stronger teams in the regular season.
Philadelphia Fusion – Atlantic Division
The Philadelphia Fusion is the team representing Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, in the Overwatch League. The team is owned by Comcast Spectacor, a sports and entertainment company that manages hundreds of stadiums in North America and Singapore. In the world of traditional sports, Spectacor has holdings in the Philadelphia Flyers NHL hockey team.
The Fusion has acquired a diverse roster, with four players coming from the Faze Clan roster, while the others are coming from the teams like 123, eUnited, C9 EU, LW Red,… They have also signed players with almost no history at all and it will be interesting to see how they fare against stronger and better-organised teams. Anyway, their South Korean players are all coming from respected and well-performing teams and several of them were on their national squads, but we will have to wait for the season to start to see if this divers roaster will bore any fruit. They will definitely have a hard time against stronger teams, especially in the early season.
Jae-hyeok ‘Carpe’ Lee, DPS, South Korea
Josh ‘Eqo’ Corona, DPS, Israel
George ‘ShaDowBurn’ Gushcha, DPS, Russia
Hong-joon ‘HOTBA’ Choi, Flex, South Korea
Gael ‘Poko’ Gouzerch, Flex, France
Joona ‘Fragi’ Laine, Tank, Finland
Su-min ‘SADO’ Kim, Tank, South Korea – Suspended
Isaac ‘Boombox’ Charles, Support, United Kingdom
Jeong-hwan ‘Dayfly’ Park, Support, South Korea
Joe ‘Joemeister’ Gramano, Support, Canada
Alberto ‘neptuNo’ González, Support, Spain
Fusion have also Simon “snilo” Ekstrom on their roster, but he is unable to compete in the first season, as he is still underage(currently 17 years old). Su-Min “Sado” Kim, playing the “Tank” role in the team, was accused and found guilty of account-boosting practice, wherein an individual is paid to increase another user’s Skill Rating. He is not allowed to play in the preseason and the first 30 matches of the season. After the suspension, Sado can resume his position on the Philadelphia Fusion roster. Anyway, the team will be supported by an equally diverse coaching staff, with head coach Yann ‘Kirby’ Luu hailing from France, assistant coaches Se-Hwi ‘NamedHwi’ Go and Elliot ‘Hayes’ Hayes from South Korea and the UK respectively, and their analyst Ethan ‘Beezy’ Spector from the USA.
The first Philadelphia Fusion game is against Florida Mayhem on Thursday, December 7 at 19:00 EST as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will have a second game on Saturday, depending on their result. If we compare roster between these two teams, I would give a small advantage to the Florida Mayhem, especially if you take into the consideration that the Mayhem roster should have more experiences playing together(as they are just a re brand of Misfits).
Dallas Fuel – Pacific Division
The Dallas Fuel is the team representing Dallas, Texas, USA, in the Overwatch League. The team is co-owned by Team EnVyUs and by nV investor Hersh Interactive. Team Envy has recently received investments from the Hersh Interactive Group, owned by Kenneth Hersh. Hersh is known for his endeavours in the oil and gas industry and with, Texas being one of the leading oil-producing states in the US, it makes sense why the name was chosen. Team EnVyUs is arguably one of the most successful Overwatch teams in North America, having performed well on the international stage several times, including winning the first season of APEX in 2016. They also have successful teams in other esports titles and now with the heavy support from the Hersh Family Investments group, they will be hungry for more success in the new league.
Dallas Fuels roster strong enough to compete in playoffs. They have arguably the best Overwatch roster in North America, with many of its players been together since the days of closed beta. Their roster is mostly comprised of the EnvyUs roster that was still successful during 2017 including winning the first season of Overwatch Contenders North America, plus a couple of new additions, most notably fan favourite Seagull. They also signed xQc and Custa from Arc 6. Taking into consideration that the players know how to play together and the team was able to retain the coaching staff, they’re likely the strongest team not composed purely of Koreans, at least on paper.
- Kim ‘EFFECT‘ Hyeon, DPS, South Korea
- Timo ‘Taimou‘ Kettunen, DPS/Flex, Finland
- Brandon ‘Seagull‘ Larned, DPS/Flex, USA
- Pongphop ‘Mickie‘ Rattanasangchod, Flex, Thailand
- Sebastian ‘chipshajen‘ Widlund, Support/Flex, Sweden
- Christian ‘cocco‘ Jonsson, Tank, Sweden
- Félix ‘xQc‘ Lengyel, Tank, Canada
- Jonathan ‘HarryHook‘ Tejedor Rua, Support/Flex and Captain, Spain
- Scott ‘Custa‘ Kennedy, Support, Australia
The team will be supported by an excellent coach, Kyle ‘KyKy‘ Souder, who coached the EnvyUs team to much of their 2017 success. Mat “TazMo” Taylor was employed as a Team Manager. The first Dallas Fuel game is against the Houston Outlaws on Wednesday in a Texas derby, December 7 at 18:00 CT as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will have a second game on Friday or Saturday, depending on their result. Given the strength of the Dallas roster, they should have no problems winning against the Outlaws, and the team should be able to challenge even stronger teams like London Excelsior and Seoul Dynasty. They are one of the favourites to reach the playoffs stage.
Los Angeles Valiant – Pacific Division
The Los Angeles Valiant are one of the two teams representing Los Angeles, California, USA, in the Overwatch League. The team is owned and managed by Noah Whinston, CEO of Immortals. They’re a young organization to the esports scene, but they have seen massive success across multiple esports titles like League of Legends, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive(finalists in the last Major) and Dota 2. The group itself has investment from the same folks behind the Memphis Grizzlies and Linkin Park. Although they are a successful organization, they have been rejected a slot for the upcoming North American League of Legends Championship Series (NA LCS) season which they have been part of since 2015. Some of the reason being cited were their involvement in the Overwatch League as well as its recent finances.
The Los Angeles Valiant roster is constructed from a core of the Immortals Overwatch team, along with various additions from Cloud9 EU, Rogue and Counter Logic Gaming, for the new season to fill out the bench. It features North American, European and Korean players and all of them have experience in high-performing pre-League teams or at the World Cup.
- Christopher ‘GrimReality‘ Schaefer, DPS, USA
- Brady ‘Agilities‘ Girardi, DPS, Canada
- Terrence ‘SoOn‘ Tarlier, DPS, France
- Ted ‘silkthread‘ Wang, DPS, USA
- Benjamin ‘uNKOE‘ Chevasson, Support, France
- Stefano ‘Verbo‘ Disalvo, Support, Canada
- Young-seo ‘KariV‘ Park, Support, South Korea
- Kang-jae ‘envy‘ Lee, Flex, South Korea
- Indy ‘SPACE‘ Halpern, Flex, USA
- Pan-seung ‘Fate‘ Koo, Tank, South Korea
- Seb ‘numlocked‘ Barton, Tank, United Kingdom
The Los Angeles Valiant have also Indy “SPACE” Halpern on their roster, but due to the Overwatch League rules, he will be unable to compete until he is eighteen years old. The team will be supported by two coaches; Dong ‘Ookz‘ Wook Kim and Henry ‘Cuddles‘ Coxall. Both of them previous coached the Immortals team and should have the clear picture on how to guide the team. Josua ‘dzMins’ Kim was hired as a team manager. The first Los Angeles Valiant game is against the San Francisco Shock on Wednesday, December 6 at 18:00 PST as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will have a second game on Friday or Saturday, depending on their result. If we take a look at the Shock’s roster of inexperienced players, LA Valiant should be able to win their first match.
Los Angeles Gladiators – Pacific Division
The Los Angeles Gladiators are one of the two teams representing Los Angeles, California, USA, in the Overwatch League. The team is owned and managed by Stan and Josh Kroenke, owners of several American sports franchises, and founders of KSE Esports. Kroenke Sports & Entertainment, one of the world’s leading ownership, entertainment and management groups. As owners and operators of Pepsi Center, Paramount Theatre, Arsenal F.C. (Premier League), Los Angeles Rams (NFL), Denver Nuggets (NBA), Colorado Avalanche (NHL), Colorado Rapids (MLS) and Colorado Mammoth (NLL), KSE’s sports and entertainment assets are second to none.
The Gladiators roster is made up of players from around the globe. They have signed players from Counter Logic Gaming, Cloud9, Team Gigantti, Kungarna and CONBOX. The players have achieved some minor success across a number of different tournaments, though none had notable success at the highest levels of APEX. They will probably struggle at the beginning of the season, especially if the players fail to adapt to their new teammates.
- Lane ‘Surefour‘ Roberts, DPS, Canada
- Joon-seong ‘Asher‘ Choi, DPS, South Korea
- João ‘Hydration‘ Pedro Goes Telles, DPS, Brazil
- Aaron ‘Bischu‘ Kim, Flex, South Korea
- Luis ‘iReMiix‘ Galarza Figueroa, Tank, Puerto Rico
- Jonas ‘Shaz‘ Suovaara, Support, Finland
- Benjamin ‘BigG00se‘ Isohanni, Support, Finland
The team will be supported by David ‘Dpei‘ Pei as their Head Coach and Timothy ‘Tim‘ Albanese as Assistant coach. Kevin ‘Kez‘ Jeon was chosen for the Team Manager role. The first Los Angeles Gladiators game is against the London Spitfire on Thursday, December 7 at 14:00 PST as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will have a second game on Friday or Saturday, depending on their result. I expect them to be heavily outplayed by the London’s all-Korean roster. The Gladiators would then face off against one of the other losing teams.
San Francisco Shock – Pacific Division
The San Francisco Shock is the team representing San Francisco, California, USA, in the Overwatch League. The franchise is owned by Andy Miller, Chairman and Founder of NRG Esports. NRG have been on the esports scene for a relatively short period and have held rosters in a number of games, but apart from winning the Smite World Championships 2017 and some minor successes in Rocket League and Hearthstone, their teams are not very successful and to be honest, I don’t expect a lot from their Overwatch team, especially if you consider that only one of their players has Apex experience, while others are fairly untested in the high-level competition.
Their roster is a mix of players from various teams and nations. Players are coming from the teams like Cloud9 EU, Selfless Gaming, Kungarna, Arc 6,… Even thru several of them played in the World Cup, they are still mostly untested in high-level competition. Almost none of them have played together recently, so it will be interesting to see if they can do anything during the preseason.
- André ‘IDDQD‘ Dahlström, DPS, Sweden
- Dante ‘Danteh‘ Cruz, DPS/Flex, USA
- Andrej ‘Babybay‘ Francisty, Flex/DPS, USA
- Nikola ‘Sleepy‘ Andrews, Support, USA
- Daniel ‘dhaK‘ Martinez Paz, Support, Spain
- David ‘Nomy‘ Ramirez, Tank, Mexico
- Andreas ‘Nevix‘ Karlsson, DPS, Sweden
They also have two inactive players, Jay ‘Sinatraa‘ Won (DPS, USA) and Matthew ‘Super‘ DeLisi (Flex, USA) who will join the team when they reach the minimum required age of 18. The team will be coached by Brad Rajani, with the help of his assistant coach Dillain “LegitRc” Odeneal. Harsha Bandi was signed up as an analyst. Andrew ‘Zwei‘ Baker has a role of the team manager and Brett ‘Brettbox‘ Lautenbach is the current President. Previous manager Maxwell ‘Hotaruz‘ Bateman was fired in late 2017 after sexual assault allegations.
The first San Francisco Shock game is against the Los Angeles Valiant on Wednesday, December 6 at 18:00 PST as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will have a second game on Friday or Saturday, depending on their result. Even thru LA Valiant aren’t anything special, their players have all played in high-performing pre-League teams or at the World Cup, while SF Shocks roster looks relatively inexperienced. LA should win the game.
Seoul Dynasty – Pacific Division
The Seoul Dynasty is the team representing Seoul, South Korea, in the Overwatch League. The team is owned by Kevin Chou, founder of the intensely successful Kabam mobile gaming company and now CEO of KSV Esports, a partnership between the USA’s Silicon Valley and Korea’s thriving esports scene. He also has a hand in streamlabs and has invested in a number of gaming projects over the years. Basically, they are complete newcomers to the esports scene without any previous experiences in the esports.
Seoul Dynasty have acquired a big roster of twelve players, with most of the players coming over from the old Lunatic-Hai squad, while the other players are coming from other high-performing Korean APEX teams, LW Red, Cloud9, Laser Kittenz, MVP Space and Flash Lux. If we take a look at the other teams, only London Spitfire have more players from the highest division of competition. They are definitely one of the main favourites the win the league and should reach the playoffs stage quite easily.
- In-Jae ‘EscA’ Kim, DPS, South Korea
- Sang-Beom ‘Munchkin‘ Byun, DPS, South Korea
- Byung-Sun ‘Fleta‘ Lim, DPS, South Korea
- Gi-Do ‘Gido’ Moon, DPS/Flex, South Korea
- Joon-Hyuk ‘Zunba’ Kim, Flex, South Korea
- Jae-Mo ‘xepheR‘ Koo, Flex, South Korea
- Je-Hong ‘ryujehong’ Ryu, Support/Flex, South Korea
- Jin-Mo ‘Tobi’ Yang, Support, South Korea
- Jin-Hyuk ‘Miro’ Gong, Tank, South Korea
- Seok-woo ‘Wekeed‘ Choi, DPS, South Korea
- Joon-hyuk ‘Bunny‘ Chae, DPS, South Korea
- Dae-kuk ‘KuKi‘ Kim, Tank, South Korea
Coaching will be done by Kwang-jin Baek. He can count on the help of three additional support coaches, Ho-Jeong ‘alwaysoov‘ Chae, Yo-han ‘nuGget‘ Kim and Ho-Cheol “Hocury” Lee. Harry ‘MaSsan‘ Cheong, former Hearthstone pro, will take on the role of the Global business director for KSV and Seoul Dynasty. The first Seoul Dynasty game is against the Shanghai Dragons on Thursday, December 7 at 13:00 KST as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will have a second game on Friday or Saturday, depending on their result. Although we rate Seoul Dynasty higher than the Shangai Dragons, it could be a close affair.
Shanghai Dragons – Pacific Division
Shanghai Dragons, (上海龙之队 in Chinese), is the team representing Shanghai, China, in the Overwatch League. The team is owned by NetEase, a Chinese Internet Technology company that distributes Blizzard games in China. They have been Blizzard’s publishing partner in China for a long time and they were likely Blizzard’s favourites for the first Chinese team in their league.
The roster was built on the backbone of one of the most successful Overwatch teams in the Chinese Overwatch scene, LGD Gaming. They have also signed a mix of members from various Chinese teams like 1246, Vici Gaming, Team CC and FTD Club. The Chinese team will be heading into the season as one of the underdogs, mostly because many people see this tournament as a competition between the South Koreans and North American & EU-based players. The Chinese super team could pretty much be the surprise of the season, especially with strong players like Fang ‘Undead‘ Chao from LGD Gaming and Jing ‘Roshan‘ Wenhao from FTD Club. Several members were a part of the Chinese national squad that competed in the 2017 World Cup, losing to France in the round of eight.
- Lu ‘Diya‘ Weida, DPS, China
- Fang ‘Undead‘ Chao, DPS, China
- Liu ‘Xushu‘ Junjie, Tank / Flex, China
- Jing ‘Roshan‘ Wenhao, Tank, China
- Wu ‘MG‘ Dongjian, Tank, China
- Cheng ‘Altering‘ Yage, Support, China
- Chen ‘Fiveking‘ Zhaoyu, Support, China
- Xu ‘Freefeel‘ Peixuan, Support, China
The team will be supported by Chief Coach Chen “U4” Congshan, Assistant Coach Jun Young “Kong” Son and the analyst Jia “Nai8” Jia. The first Shanghai Dragons game is against the Seoul Dynasty on Thursday, December 7 at 12:00 CST as part of the Overwatch League preseason. They will have a second game on Friday or Saturday, depending on their result. There is no denying that Seoul holds the stronger roster, but the Dragons definitely have that upset potential. For the prediction, we will probably make our decision with the odds in mind. We will see more when the odds will be known.
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- Betting predictions: you will receive all of our Overwatch League predictions, along with predictions for the next CS:GO major
The current price for the whole season is only 99 USD(about $15 per month, the service will run for an entire season, including preseason, for about 7 to 8 months) and can be paid via Paypal button below.
The total number of subscribers will be limited to 30 people(to protect the odds), and with a couple of spots already reserved or taken, you should act soon. The preseason will begin on 7.12.2017 and the regular season will end at 17.7.2018.
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