On Friday, Joe “Joemeister” Gramano, former healer for the Philadelphia Fusion, announced his retirement to pursue a career in coaching. The announcement came almost a year since Joemeister signed on with the Philadelphia Fusion. The Twitter post expressed Joemeister’s appreciation and gratitude for his teammates, coaches, and fans. He is currently looking for a team to take him on as coach.
Transitioning to a coaching role and my plans for the future
— Joemeister (@Joemeister) September 21, 2018
Joemeister started his career in 2016 with Gale Force eSports, who would later become known as compLexity. In 2017, Joemeister joined Jae-hyeok “Carpe” Lee and George “Shadowburn” Gushcha on the FazeClan roster before all three were picked up by the Philadelphia Fusion. Joemeister is also a recurring member of Team Canada; the last match he played on stage was during the 2017 World Cup Final as the Philadelphia Fusion were unable to play during the 2017 preseason.
Unfortunately, fans of the Lucio aficionado would never get the chance to see him play on stage. Joemeister was a constant absence from the starting roster, though we did often see him in the Fusion’s behind the scenes YouTube videos. Often seen cooking alongside Chef Heidi, that was the only glimpse of the healer that fans got to see. Joemeister was the only member of the Fusion not to see a minute of playtime this season. Fellow healer Jeong-hwan “DayFly” Park was able to make his way to the stage a few times during season one.
However, Isaac “Boombox” Charles and Alberto “NeptuNo” González became the Fusion’s star healing duo. NeptuNo notably became a standout player due to his aggressive Mercy play and risky Resurrections. The Mercy Meta was not kind to a majority of the healers in the league. A majority of the League’s healers had more of a background with Ana, Zenyatta, and Lucio. The meta forced many players to take up the previous must-pick character before her many nerfs were introduced into the game later this year. Not everyone was as successful with learning Mercy as NeptuNo was. Even with the meta changes throughout the season, Joemeister never made his way to the stage, much to the disappointment of his many fans.
As a Philadelphia fan, it was confusing and sometimes upsetting to see some of the team’s talent permanently sitting on the bench. Fans will never know what goes on behind the scenes, but it was a shame that Joemeister, DayFly, Shadowburn, and Simon “Snillo” Ekström were not able to see more playtime. Save for Snillo, all three of the players mentioned above have since been released from the Fusion’s roster.
Going into season two, one can only hope that the Fusion will make better decisions regarding how to utilize their talent. It is still unknown whether or not the Fusion has acquired new members, but fans are eagerly looking forward to next season and seeing what the Fusion will bring to the table.
Joemeister is not the only Overwatch League player to make the transition to coaching. LA Valient’s Christopher “GrimReality” Schaefer was the first to make the transition back in April this year becoming an assistant coach for the team. He has since left the LA Valiant. Another to make the transition to coach is Christian “Cocco” Jonsson of the Dallas Fuel; he has decided to stay on with the Fuel as an assistant coach for the upcoming Overwatch League season.
In his TwitLonger, Joemeister says that his goal for the future is “to be able to take what [he’s] learned over the last [three] years and help like-minded people in the scene who share the same interests and passion […] to achieve their goals”. His retirement has come as a surprise to some, but everyone is looking forward to seeing what the former player will bring as a coach. With eight new teams officially signed to the Overwatch League, we can only hope to see Joemeister finding a new home soon. Joemeister was unavailable for comment at the time of the writing of this article. We at The Game Haus wish him nothing but success in the future!
Featured Image courtesy of DBL TAP.