Since their less than desirable start to Season 2 of the Overwatch League, the Los Angeles Valiant had been slowly chipping away at the korean talent in both their staff and player rosters, ultimately culminating in their big one-for-three trade with Mayhem Academy between Stages 2 and 3.
Here is a rundown of the changes made that ultimately left only one Korean present among both the staff and players.
The first big shake up on the LA Valiant roster happened directly after Stage 1. The Valiant had just finished their final match, ending with a record of 0-7. This lead to the team parting ways with head coach Byung-chul “Moon” Moon. Assistant coach Mike “Packing10” Szklanny went on to replace him intermittently, but still holds the position today.
Just one month later, the LA Valiant brought on Marvin “Promise” Schröder as a new assistant coach, with another assistant coach, Dong-soo “Dongsu” Shin, leaving the team a couple of weeks later. Much later into the season, yet another assistant coach, Justin “reprize” Hand, joined the Valiant.
At this point, no more Koreans remained on the staff.
The western shift among the player roster happened only some time after the final korean staff member had left the Los Angeles Valiant, and it started with a bang.
Between Stages 2 and 3, news dropped of a massive trade where the LA Valiant would give main tank Pan-seung “Fate” Koo to the Florida Mayhem in exchange for three Mayhem Academy players: main tank Russell “FCTFCTN” Campbell, off tank Caleb “McGravy” McGarvey, and DPS Johannes “Shax” Nielsen.
Following this big switch, the Los Angeles Valiant saw Jun-hyeok “Bunny” Chae part ways with them, Dae-kuk “KuKi” Kim’s retirement, and Min-chul “IZaYaKI” Kim’s transfer to the Shanghai Dragons. These changes cleared the Valiant’s bench of all Korean players.
As of today, the only remaining Korean anywhere on the team is main support Young-seo “KariV” Park. However, he looks good to stay as he has been vital to the recent success of the Los Angeles Valiant.
Based on performance alone, it seems that the LA Valiant’s decision to almost completely westernize their roster paid off. With each lineup change came improvement from the team, leading to their take down of the Vancouver Titans after FCTFCTN replaced Fate.
Right now, they do look fairly weaker on 2-2-2 than Sombra GOATs. Though, the difference is that their issues no longer look as though they’re fundamental, such as miscommunication within the team. The Los Angeles Valiant can now certainly work with what they’ve got.
Featured image courtesy of the Los Angeles Valiant on Twitter