Shanghai Dragons esports power rankings
by Christopher Eluemuno in
eSports Betting News

Shanghai Dragons have announced that they have re-signed their Overwatch title-winning coach, Moon “Moon” Byung-chul, to their roster for the upcoming season.

The franchise announced their decision via a Twitter post on their page, welcoming the 33-year old Korean coach back to the fold.

Moon reacted to the announcement of his return to the SHD and shared his excitement about being part of the team again. He expressed his sadness at the release of all the players but promises to make up a formidable and devoted roster.

“I am so happy to be back home again. It’s so sad to part with the players, but we’ll run hard again with young, passionate players who can devote themselves to the team!!” Moon said.

The Shanghai Dragons, the winners of season four of the Overwatch League, have brought back a familiar face for the 2023 season amid a turbulent offseason that saw the entire player roster and coaching staff leave and concerns about the league’s future in China emerge.

Moon’s acquisition comes as a sigh of relief to the fans as he has been a key figure for the Dragons since joining the team in 2019. He has held the head coach position with the team for the past three seasons, including 2020, 2021, and 2022 seasons. Under Moon’s guidance, the Dragons experienced a resurgence in 2020 and dominated in 2021, ultimately earning an Overwatch League championship after a highly spirited victory over Atlanta Reign in the grand finals.

However, the Shanghai Dragons were unable to repeat their championship performance in 2022, finishing the regular season with a record far below expectations for a reigning champion and making a swift exit in the playoffs despite retaining a majority of their championship roster from the previous year. The franchise 2022 campaign’s highlight was their Summer Showdown top seed position.

The Dragons’ decision to re-sign Moon is a clear sign of their commitment to continuing their success in the Overwatch League. Moon’s leadership and expertise have been instrumental in the team’s success, and his return will guarantee stability and direction as they look to put up another attempt at winning the title in the upcoming season.

Shanghai’s 2023 roster has yet to be finalized. In November, the team parted ways with a majority of their starting roster, including notable players like DPS Byungsun “Fleta” Kim, tank Panseung “Fate” Koo, and former in-game leader Kang “Void” Jun-woo.

Initially, it seemed that Shanghai would keep DPS player Lee “LIP” Jae-woo and support duo Minchul “Iazyaki” Kim and Lee “LeeJaeGon” Jae-Gon, but LIP ultimately joined the Atlanta Reign, and the two supports signed with the Boston Uprising in the offseason. As of now, the composition of Shanghai’s roster for 2023 remains uncertain as they are yet to add a player to their roster.

However, that will not be the case for long as the team revealed that they will hold “open trials” for their roster. They outlined the trial details and conditions for interested participants.

The future of the Overwatch League in China is uncertain following the expiration of licensing agreements between Blizzard and Chinese gaming company NetEase last month. This caused a “suspension” of games in China and prompted the Overwatch League to delay the start of the free agency period, causing frustration among some teams. However, the free agency deadline has remained set for March 13, 2023.

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