Overwatch League Free Agency: Dallas Fuel, LA Gladiators and Houston Outlaws poised to make changes
With the Free Agency period officially underway for the Overwatch League off-season, several big name players are searching for their best options as established teams look to make wholesale renovations of their roster. Among the top tier free agents in the class of 2019; Nevix, MekO and Ryujehong are some of the most prominent names looking for greener pastures heading into season three of OWL.
Around the league, Washington Justice, LA Gladiators and Houston Outlaws have jumped out of the gate early already making ambitious moves for both player and coaching staff personnel in order to boost their chances in 2020.
Outlook for Season Three
With the shift into global Overwatch League taking root next competitive season, the upfront cost and new expenses for teams have made this years free agent market more volatile than in years past. Rumblings around the league have led many to suggest that several organizations will be blowing up their roster and overhauling their team with a ‘moneyball’ approach in mind in order to keep costs down.
This change of behavior from teams in comparison to the star hungry actions in free agency last year may lead to an interesting disbursement of talent throughout the league as more teams opt for the Boston Uprising initiative in finding competent players abroad that can fulfill an Overwatch League roll while avoiding paying the cost of a seasoned veteran.
Because of this, players like Ryu “ryujehong” Je-Hong could be out of sorts for an Overwatch League team that is willing to pay him what he’s worth as a multi-year professional within the esport. Over the course of the next few weeks, teams will be ramping up their pursuit for their new look rosters in 2020 as the deadline for season agreements isn’t until November 11.
If the rumors end up being true, we will see the most meteoric shift of players on a wide scale within the league since its inception. Now that the Overwatch league is trying to step into an era of stability, the objective for teams is to conserve, consolidate and execute instead of forcing themselves to a complete overhaul.
Read also: Overwatch World Cup 2019 Power Rankings
Teams making changes with the Overwatch League Free Agency
The Washington Justice have cut several ties with their old identity as a team last season, and the new additions they’ve made so far have been a step in the right direction. Justice made no qualms this year by parting ways with their entire coaching staff from a year prior and dropping their former franchise player Janus in the process.
On the rebound, Washington Justice have two major building blocks now with Corey “Corey” Nigra and Gye “rOar” Chang-hoon at the forefront. Both of these players epitomize the new school talent that the Overwatch League had to offer last season and the potent pair these two can potentially make will be a storyline to watch all of 2020.
— Washington Justice (@washjustice) October 4, 2019
Dallas Fuel have opted to stick with their long-term head coach once again this offseason as Aaron “Aero” Atkins is eyeing just his second full year in charge of the organization, even though the first year didn’t go exactly as planned. Dallas’ familiar tropes as a troubled organization returned last season as Aero was afflicted by a number of team chemistry issues that plagued their hopes at success in the OWL before it began.
While the roster moves haven’t been made official yet, Dallas Fuel are expected to be one of those rosters that completely implode in an effort to start new. All options are on the table as every member is on the chopping block and Aero has full reign over which direction the team goes in this new chapter of Dallas Fuel history.
The Houston Outlaws haven’t sat around the bush hoping to make new moves this offseason, they have gotten the ball rolling at a blistering pace. After announcing the arrival of Head Coach Harsha Bandi to the team, Houston Outlaws have already started putting together compatible players and answering the problems they never actually fixed last season.
Picking up Harsha from SF Shock and Vancouver Titans stock and also signing Joaõ “Hydration” Telles from the LA Gladiators are definitive starting points that outline the ambitious direction Houston Outlaws are gunning for this offseason. Expect Houston to quickly compound on these moves as they look to clamp down a few more high impact players to round out the squad.