Vancouver Titans new roster, new issues

After releasing their entire all-Korean player squad recently due to geographical conflicts amidst travel restrictions, the Vancouver Titans have just signed a new team – and their Head of Esports made a somewhat controversial statement about the talent of Korean players amidst a flurry of Overwatch news.

Vancouver Titans new roster, new issues

© Vancouver Titans

The old team

Releasing their old all-Korean squad was something of a historic moment for not just the team but also the OWL in its entirety. Releasing their entire core team and picking up new players just days before the return of the OWL was a harsh if necessary move – unfortunately one that didn’t exactly benefit everyone involved.

Releasing the former core team meant allowing them to pursue opportunities in the Asian leagues – and it meant having to recruit Western talent for the Vancouver Titans roster. Their previous players suffered various issues – among them communication difficulties while they were signed on. The hope is that the new squad would not face these issues – but for now, they have other problems.

As especially fans of Overwatch betting know, the May-June section of the current season has already begun, with the first matches of week 14 played.

The old roster have mostly updated their social media with news about being Free Agents and looking for teams. If someone is willing to pick up the entire roster, or the players will be split apart remains to be seen.

The new team

For their core roster, the Titans picked up the Second Wind squad – a Tier 2 team with a decent track record… and a controversial member. Colin ‘Higan’ Arai, a flex-tank player has a more than spotty past, complete with various incidents of sexism, toxic criticism, discriminatory remarks and more. Perhaps the ‘highlight’ of his questionable moments was yelling ‘Allah Akhbar’ when using D.Va’s ulti – an ability that has her throwing her mech as a bomb.

Many felt that his inclusion on the Titans would not be in the best interest of the team… and apparently the team agreed. When the Vancouver Titans roster was revealed, it featured several Second Wind players, except for those who were underage, and Higan – who according to his social media, was understanding about the decision not to include him. Other players not picked up for the active team were underage – the OWL has an 18-year old minimum age limit.

A (weak) new start

Somewhat controversially, the Head of Esports at the org that owns the Titans, Alfred de Vera made the following statement: “I’m not gonna say something that’s not factual, Korean players are the best Overwatch League players in the world and I think that’s an objective fact here.”

While it’s true that Korean esports pros can be found at the top of most major esports leagues, it’s still quite a slap in the faces of the players his org just signed – all of which are from Europe, North America, and in one case, from Saudi Arabia. Though likely not ill-intended the statement still had fans scratching their heads – it seems the Titans and their new roster aren’t exactly living up to being one of the best Overwatch teams out there at the moment.

In their first two matches against Washington Justice and Florida Mayhem, they lost with 0-3 and 1-3 respectively. That’s not altogether surprising – the new team lacks the experience and training together that the old team had. Their true potential remains to be seen – they were certainly thrown

Read next: Why Are so Many Overwatch Pros Switching to Valorant?