At 2:00 pm EST, the Washington Justice posted a quick and concise tweet with a single image. This couldn’t have been more ironic as they used it to announce one of the most impactful trades of the season: that they had picked up Yeonjoon “ArK” Hong from the New York Excelsior and added him to their roster for Stage 2 of the Overwatch League.
— Washington Justice (@washjustice) March 18, 2019
There had been rumors circulating before the season of Ark attempting to stay with Junhwa “Janus” Song when he and Hyeongseok “WizardHyeong” Kim were picked up by the Washington Justice. However once the season began, nothing came of these rumors and the idea was largely forgotten. As a result, this announcement today must have come as a big surprise for many fans of the league.
Why the trade
Ark is a powerful mercy player, and helped the NYXL take three strong stages in the inaugural season as the starting main healer. However, he has been benched for most of this season in favor of Taesung “Anamo” Jung, and only appeared on stage a few times. With the starting main support position seemingly locked up by Anamo, it makes sense why he would want to try to find another team in which he could start on, similar to the early trade of Chan-hyung “Fissure” Baek from the London Spitfire to the LA Gladiators last year.
What this means
Considering how he is fluent in English and has strong preexisting chemistry with both Janus and WizardHyeong, it’s likely that Ark will fit into this roster with relative ease. While the Justice have been running Riley “Fahzix” Taylor on main support, Fahzix doesn’t have Mercy in his wheelhouse, and if the meta shifts more then Ark will most likely fill that main support role. Ark also has a slew of OWL experience that the Justice’s other members could learn from. With three members from the Season 1 NYXL now on this roster, expect to see Washington Justice fighting a lot more and perhaps even climbing a few spots in the rankings as the year goes on.
“From Our Haus to Yours”