The OWL Season 2 Atlantic Division Preview ( Part 2)

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The Overwatch league Season 2 is set to start on the 14th of February 2019. We will see the top teams compete against each other. The Atlantic Division is packed with some of the best teams from Season 1. These include teams such as London Spitfire, New York Excelsior as well as the Philadelphia Fusion. In this article, we cover the teams from the Atlantic Division. You can inform yourself of their roster, their coaching staff as well as some knowledge on individual players and their position on the team.

New York Excelsior

The New York Excelsior was the single most dominant team during the regular season of Overwatch League. The all-Korean roster displayed excellent synergy and coordination throughout the season to win their matches. In fact, they qualified for the playoffs with a stage to spare. Their dominance in the group stage, however, did not ensure a Season victory. The team has one of the most ambitious and skilled roster when it comes to their DP Lineup. Their DPS players for last season itself were more than enough to help them become a top tier team. This Season they have added Nenne and Fl0wer to their roster as well.

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The Excelsior is owned by the Jeff Wilpon, COO of the baseball team The New York Mets.

New York Excelsior Roster:

  • Jong-ryeol “Saebyeolbe” Park
  • Do-hyeon “Pine” Kim
  • Hae-seong “Libero” Kim
  • Tae-hong “MekO” Kim
  • Dong-gyu “Mano” Kim
  • Sung-hyeon “JJoNak” Bang
  • Yeon-joon “ArK” Hong
  • Tae-sung “Anamo” Jung
  • Yeon-oh “Fl0w3R” Hwang
  • Yeon-kwan “Nenne” Jeong

Coaching Staff:

  • Hyeon-sang “Pavane” Yu
  • Se-chul “zet” Son
  • Yong-cheol Jeong

Saebyeolbe, Pine and Libero return to the roster for Season 2. Saebyeolbe has a huge impact on the team’s morale and performance. The player is able to guide his teammates through various problems and is able to keep them together. Individually he is one of the best Tracer players in the League. We have seen him save the game for NYXL on multiple occasions. He was extremely adept in the Dive meta and had a clear choice of target. He would not shy away from taking aim duels with the opposing DPS. he would keep them engaged and often come out ahead. Saebyeolbe will always be a critical part of NYXL and their performance.

However, the team also has Pine and Libero returning as the DPS players. Pine is one of the most aggressive and flashy DPS players in the League. He often flanks with the Widowmaker and another such really weird positioning. The fact that he can hit his shots with ease even being in a very difficult situation is what makes him extremely lethal. Libero is a high skill ceiling and yet consistent player on the team. These three DPS players have already proven their worth on the team during Season 1. They also have excellent coordination with each other and that helps them as they move ahead into Season 2.

Fl0wer and Nenne

Fl0wer joins New York Excelsior and completes their roster.

However, any mention of New York Excelsior in 2019 will not be complete without a mention of Fl0wer and Nenne. They are the new additions to the roster. Fl0wer is one of the most anticipated additions for Season 2. The player with the exceedingly high skill set has made a name for himself in Korea. He was the star of the Korean Overwatch World Cup in 2017 and he amassed multiple fans all across the world. However, as he was not above 18 yet, it meant that he had to play on the XL2 Academy team.

We don’t know how Fl0wer will synchronise with the rest of the squad. After all, a huge part of his success in his previous teams was due to the space provided to the DPS player. He was able to get the space needed for the insane plays at a very high skill level.

Nenne played the Tracer and Widowmaker for most of his duration on XL2 Academy. He had a very unique playstyle especially when it comes to his positioning and movement on the map. We will have to wait and see how Nenne and Fl0wer play in the team together. It will be a difficult task to take the place of existing DPS players.

The Old Guard

Despite being one of the strongest teams in the Season 1 Group stage, NYXL failed to win the final trophy.

The rest of the team remains very similar to that of Season 1. There is no reason for the management to change the roster, especially since they were extremely successful in Season 1. While they did not win the entire Season, they were one of the best teams in the regular season. The team’s success comes on the back of their extremely high coordination and synergy.

They have one of the best Flex support players in the overwatch League. JJonak has proven himself as a Zenyatta. In fact, his Zenyatta was so good in Season 1 that other support players would ask their teammates to support their Zenyatta playstyle.JJonak creates the space for himself and is exceptionally well positioned for a support player. His synergy with co-support player Ark was clearly evident throughout Season 1. The players always had each other back and would even be able to defeat opponent DPS players on their own [ as a duo].

JJonak was the MVP of Season 1 Overwatch league.

Going into Season 2, we expect much of the same playstyle and experience coming into play. Their synergy with each other is what makes the NYXL back line so strong. New York Excelsior will strive to ensure that they continue their approach in Season 2 and dominate the League stage of play. Without Janus on their team, the tank lineup for NYXL does look slightly weak. The Tank players on the team are just limited to Meko and Mano. With the current meta demanding a wide variety of tank characters, it will be interesting to see whether NYXL can adapt their playstyle.

Paris Eternal

The Paris Eternal Logo.

Paris Eternal Roster:

  • Terence “SoOn” Tarlier
  • George “ShaDowBurn” Gushcha
  • Nicolas “NiCOgdh” Moret
  • Karol “Danye” Szcześniak
  • Finnbjörn “Finnsi” Jónasson
  • Roni “LhCloudy” Tiihonen
  • Benjamin “BenBest” Dieulafait
  • Damien “HyP” Souville
  • Harrison “Kruise” PonLuís “Greyy” Perestrelo

Coaching Staff:

  • Julien “daemoN” Ducros
  • Félix “Féfé” Münch
  • Joni “Seita” Paavola
  • Kyle “KyKy” Souder

The Paris Eternal is one of the eight new franchises for Season 2 of the Overwatch League. The franchise is owned by Drew McCourt, owner of DM-ESports. As we see the team being one of the few franchises representing Europe; they do have access to a much wider catchment area for fans. It presents them with a unique opportunity to monetize their franchise and increase their fanbase.

The Paris Eternal team has four DPS players and they represent some specialists in Tracer and Genji. At the forefront of the team’s performance are Soon and Shadowburn. The two players have experience playing in the first season fo the overwatch league. There is no doubt that the players have exceptional talent, especially when it comes to Tracer [ for Soon] and Genji [ for Shadowburn].

Soon joins the Paris Eternal from LA Valiant [ Image Courtesy: DBLTAP]
Soon was on Los Angeles Valiant last season and he was crucial to the team’s performance. Since Season 1 saw the Dive meta used in exhaustion, we got to see Soon in action for the majority of the Season. He was always crucial to the team’s development and results. Constantly proving to be a worry to the backlines, Soon was able to garner lots of respect from the opposing team. As we head into the new season, however, Brigitte and other new heroes will take precedence. As such it will be interesting to see how Soon adapts to the new meta and whether he will be as effective on the team anymore.

Shadowburn’s Genji is always going to be a crucial factor for any team that he joins> The Russian player rarely demands resources from the team and that is why he remains a very consistent performer. He can bait opponent support ultimates and then he manages to get multiple frags with his Dragonblade. Shadowburn does play other heroes, but none are as effective as Genji.

The influx of French players on the Paris Eternal roster is heartening to see.

The fact that the expansion team chose Europe and decided to hire local talent is definitely inspirational. Leading the pack of new French players is Nicogdh. The 23-year-old player usually plays the Genji, although he does alternate to the off-tank position as well. This will be his first time on the overwatch League.

He has experience playing for Eagle Gaming and Rogue before that. He helped Eagle Gaming win Overwatch Contenders 2018 Season 2: Europe and they were also the winners of the Overwatch Omen by ESWC tournament. Coming from a background of Half-Life two and Team Fortress, the player has experience playing at the top tiers of esports. With his addition to Paris eternal, he adds yet another esports title to the list of Professional representation for the player. Danye has gained popularity due to his performance for Team Denmark during the Overwatch World Cup. The player is extremely flexible in his roles and that makes him a strong addition to the Paris Eternal Roster.

Tank Players

LHCloudy joins Paris Eternal from the Mayhem Academy.

There are three tank players for the team. Being a tank player is exceptionally important in the current GOATS meta. Coordination and synchronous movement amongst them is even of more importance for the teams.

  • Benjamin “BenBest” Dieulafait.
  • Roni “LhCloudy” Tiihonen.
  • Finnbjörn “Finnsi” Jónasson.

Two of these players come up to the Overwatch League from the Contenders. They were a part of the top Contenders teams and that is definitely enough to help them improve and become a top tier team in the Overwatch League. Benbest was part of Young and Beautiful. They didn’t have a great set of results in the Contenders, especially as they just finished 5-8th in the Contenders. As we head into the Overwatch Leauge, his dedication and his morale-boosting abilities for the team will be essential for the team’s performance. LhCloudy, on the other hand, is a former player for Team Gigantti. He was also a member of Mayhem Academy and they were a very strong roster for the Overwatch Contenders 2018. Despite finishing second after losing to the British Hurricane in Overwatch Contenders 2018 Season 1: Europe; Gigantti was definitely a hot favourite for their fans.

Finnsi has been on the Los Angeles Valiant for Season 1, but he has not played a single professional Overwatch League match. He returns to the roster for Season 2 and will continue to remain a tank player on the team. There are three dedicated tank players on the team and hence with the GOATS meta, we might see Finnsi playing his first ever OWL match for the team.

Support Lineup

Harrison “Kruise” Pond

The Support lineup for the team is a mixture of experience and new talent. Between players like Kruise, Hyp and Greyy, the team covers almost all the heroes in the pool. Kruise has experience playing on Toronto Defiant and he has been a part of a very successful roster. Hyp is a French player and we expect to see him have excellent coordination and be in a comfort zone for the team. As the Paris Eternal team clearly has a focus on promoting local talent, we will see them moving past the current crop and enabling the team to become more successful with better results.

Overall, the Paris Eternal is a very good team and they have a focus on enabling French players to help the team. This will come in handy as the team focusses on building their fanbase across Europe. Is the current roster strong enough to become the best team in the Overwatch league? Probably not, but they are definitely a team that can surprise us as Boston Uprising did in Season 1. They have the potential to rise to the top; whether they actually do that is a matter of time.

Philadelphia Fusion

 

The Philadelphia Fusion team were the finalists of Season 1 of the Overwatch League. This team has ensured that they preferred the team’s development over making significant roster changes. Most of the team has stayed still with the organisation with Elk joining the team as part of a two-way roster swap between the Fusion and Fusion University. Philadelphia Fusion is owned by Comcast Spectacor and has an extremely diverse roster with players from all over the world.

Philadelphia Fusion Roster:

  • Jae-hyeok “Carpe” Lee
  • Josue/Josh “Eqo” Corona
  • Simon “snillo” Ekström
  • Elijah Hudson “Elk” Gallagher
  • Gael “Poko” Gouzerch
  • Joona “Fragi” Laine
  • Su-min “SADO” Kim
  • Isaac “Boombox” Charles
  • Alberto “neptuNo” González

Coaching Staff:

  • Heidi
  • Se-hwi “NamedHwi” Go
  • Elliot “Hayes” Hayes
  • Christopher “ChrisTFer” Graham

The majority of the Philadelphia Roster is same as that of Season 1. EQO was the new addition in Season 1 and we saw him become an integral part of the team as the season progressed. His performance on the several heroes such as Widowmaker, Genji and Pharah are really strong. EQO’s versatility in the hero pool is matched with his high skill level. It makes him quite similar to how Fleta and Birdring work for the Korean rosters.

Snillo also joined the team along with EQO and together the two of them formed a strong part of the DPS forward lineup for the team. Snillo is well-known for his plays on heroes such as Mccree and Tracer. Along with EQO; they brought on a new style of play to Philadelphia Fusion. It allowed the Fusion to remain versatile and constantly surprise their opponents with their strategies. They were able to put forth multiple facets to their playstyle and as an opponent, it would always be difficult to anticipate the type of play that Philadelphia Fusion would bring forth.

They played an extremely aggressive and counter-pick style of playstyle. The team was able to understand the way the NYXL plays. They were constantly swapping off heroes and making big changes to the way they approach their enemy. The constant hero swaps made NYXL extremely uncomfortable especially as they could not ensure stable performance.

In retrospect, Philadelphia did have a tank problem for Season 1. However with the new changes and their current tank lineup; they should be fairly comfortable with their position. They have Fragi and SADO on their team and they are experienced veterans in Overwatch. They have been around in the professional circuit since before the start of the Overwatch League. Their experience of playing on the Fusion in Season 1 will definitely come in handy as they have developed a synergy with the rest of the squad.

Fragi has an extremely aggressive Main tank playstyle on the Fusion

Fragi is a player who has a very unique style of gameplay. He can be extremely aggressive with his individual performance even as the Main tank. It is not uncommon to see him play a flanking Reinhardt. While everyone knows of his love for playing a very aggressive tank, they are still caught unawares by this play. The Main tank role is mostly not associated with aggressive gameplay and it is always refreshing to see Fragi play as aggressive as he does. The Philadelphia Fusion changes their playstyle based on the heroes that are in their composition. If it is Fragi playing the frontlines, we might see the rest of the team play more aggressive in order to complement his performance.

Carpe will need to step up in order to ensure success for Philadelphia Fusion

For Supports, we have no doubt that Boombox and Neptuno are two of the best players when it comes to synergy. They have been playing together for so long and even during Season 1, their synergy was exceptional.

Overall, the synergy and coordination from the team will be their strengths early in the Season. They will need this strength in order to facilitate their performance in Stage 1. The new teams are all unknown entities and we will hope to see Philadelphia maintain their position as a strong team.

Toronto Defiant

The Toronto Defiant is one of the few new teams in Season 2. The team represents Ontario, Canada; an integrated company delivering esports and video game entertainment. However, their entry into the Overwatch League is not without adequate caution. They have partnered with Splyce, an organisation with deep roots in esports. The team was founded by OverActive Media and Splyce, with the team being operated by the Splyce organization.

Toronto Defiant Roster:

  • Se-Hyeon “Neko” Park
  • Kang-Jae “envy” Lee
  • Seung-Hyun “Ivy” Lee
  • Do-Hyung “Stellar” Lee
  • Gyeong-mu “Yakpung” Jo
  • Jae-Yoon “Aid” Go
  • Joon-Seong “Asher” Choi
  • Joo-Seong “RoKy” Park

Coaching Staff:

  • Beom-Joon “Bishop” Lee
  • Yoon-ho “Bubbly” Cho
  • Dong-wook “Don” Kim

The Toronto defiant team has multiple DPS players. They have added Asher, formerly of Los Angeles Gladiators to their roster. The player has proven himself to be extremely capable of making it into the top tiers and maintain a very high skill level at the same time. The player roster has an all Korean Lineup, which will definitely prove to be the X-factor for the Toronto Defiant moving forward. We can expect the team to have excellent synergy amongst all their players, irrespective of their hero

Neko, Aid and Rokty are the supports on this roster. Neko already has experience playing at the top level fo Overwatch when he was a part of the Boston Uprising. He did not really get all the attention on the Boston Uprising. There were always great DPS Players to take the centre stage. However, as we see this team move forth, we realised that the reason the DPS and the tank players were alive was that the supports were alive for so much time. They had excellent coordination and positioning throughout the round. It enabled them to constantly deal out lots of healing ensuring that they can become a top tier team in the League. It was not without reason that the Boston Uprising was the first team to go 10-0 in one stage.

The remaining two support player come from GC Busan and X6 Gaming from Korean Contenders. These are extremely strong teams and have produced exceptional talent over the years. These support players, Rokty and Aid form a critical part of this addition.

Envy was on Los Angeles Valiant in Season 1. After being let go from the team, he moved to Meta Bellum and participated in the Contenders. He has kept himself busy during the entire time and we expect him to come into the matches ready to go. Envy has a lot of practice and he is really well positioned for the team. However, he will have to coordinate his performances in the game with Gyeong-mu “Yakpung” Jo; the other tank player on the team.

The Toronto Defiant is a relatively new team and there are many players who will be seen in the Overwatch League for the first time. Can they rise up to the same level as the top players in the League? We will see this with time, however, veterans such as Envy and Asher will be crucial in helping the team move forward. In addition to these players, Toronto Defiant also can lean on the experience of Chris Overholt. He was the former Canadian Olympic Committee CEO and has excellent management skills from regular sports. He can use these skills to ensure that the team is performing to its optimal facilities. Toronto Defiant play Hangzhou Spark in their opening match for Season 2.

Washington Justice

The Washington Justice is owned by Washington Esports Ventures. It was founded by Mark Ein owner of the Washington Kastles of World Team Tennis. The team has a mixture of North American players and Korean players as well. We can see how the team composition presents a lack of a dominant language and hence we will see a lot of cross-references

Washington Justice roster:

  • Joon-hwa “Janus” Song
  • Corey “Corey” Nigra
  • Ethan “Stratus” Yankel
  • Hyang-ki “SanSam” Kim
  • Gi-Hyeon “Ado” Chon
  • Riley “Fahzix” Taylor
  • Gi-do “Gido” Mun
  • Hyeon-woo “Hyeonu” Cho

Coaching Staff:

  • Hyeong-seok “WizardHyeong” Kim
  • Molly Kim “AVALLA” Kyoung Ey
  • Mikael “mkL” Skjønhaug
  • Mark “Obasill” Regush
  • Canaan “Shrugger” Carman
  • Aaron Heckman

The Washington Justice team has three DPS players, three support players and two flex/tank players. The DPS Players on the team include Corey, Stratus and ADO. Corey was playing for the Gladiators Legion and he has also been a part of multiple Contenders team in the past year. The player is more focussed on hitscan heroes such as Widowmaker, Tracer and Mccree. We can hope to see him improve on his hero pool in the upcoming season. However, he is added to the team due to his effectiveness on these few heroes and we will see the Washington Justice employ his use for these heroes.

In Season 1, the teams did not rotate their players’ favourite heroes for the most part. Coaches preferred to use the players on their most impactful heroes and that would maximise their possibility for success. As we head into the next season, we will see Washington Justice use their DPS characters minimally. This includes using Stratus and ADO as well. ADO was a beacon of shining light on the Shanghai Dragon’s roster. Despite losing all forty of their games in Season 1, AdO was always a fan-favourite coming into the Season. We expect the player to shine in this team, as he will most possibly not receive another chance in Season 3 were he to fail on an individual level for Washington Justice.

The Tank Lineup

Janus comes to the team from the over-successful New York Excelsior roster. The NYXL team was dominant throughout Season 1, however, they had an abundance of players through the Season. More often than not, we did not see the team making use of their bench. So it was only right to see them let go of certain players from their roster. Janus moved to the Washington Justice and he will have a towering presence on the team. Janus is fluent in English and that will be a crucial part for this roster. Considering how they are part English speaking and part Korean, Janus could very well take on more roles than just the Main tank on the team. Since the main tank is a crucial part of any Overwatch League roster, Janus will have a big impact in the team’s performance.

Sansam comes from Meta Athena, a Korean Overwatch Contenders team. The player was not really a standout player but with the increase in the number of teams, there is definitely a dearth of strong Korean players to distribute in the OWL. With Janus’ coaching and guidance, we expect Sansam to have more of an impact on this team. He usually plays the role of an off-tank and he will be working with Janus in the team’s strategies.

Supports

The Supports on the team include Gido, Hyeonu and Fahzix. Gido was on the Seoul Dynasty and is a very high-skilled individual. However, Seoul dynasty’s support lineup was one of the best in Season 1. Between Ryujehong and Tobi; there was not much scope for a substitution on the team. However, that does not diminish his talent or his ability to stay at a very competitive level. He remains a very strong member on the team and he will be crucial to determining the pace of the game further for the Washington Justice.

Fahzix comes to the team from Team NRG, an Overwatch Contenders roster. The player has a lot to prove in the Overwatch League. He has already proven his worth in the Contenders and helped his team test other teams to their limits.

The Washington Justice is a very strong team and they have a good mixture of talented individuals. They also have new young talent from Korea and North America. We hope to see them perform at a very high level coming into the Season 2 of the Overwatch league.

This concludes our review of the ten teams in the Overwatch League Atlantic Division. You can check out the first part involving five other teams for the Atlantic Division here. Which of these teams do you support for the league? Let us know in comments below.

Check out the Overwatch league team Previews here:


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