Tim “Manneten” Bylund, main-tank for the Florida Mayhem in the Overwatch League Season 1, has joined the Mayhem Academy. Manneten was dropped Sep. 5, along with five other players. Those dropped include Andreas “Logix” Berghmans, Johan “CWoosH” Klingestedt, Sebastian “Zebbosai” Olsson, Aleksi “Zuppeh” Kuntsi, and Joonas “zappis” Alakurtti. Manneten is the first of these players to be picked up by a team.
The Florida Mayhem decided to overhaul their roster after finishing 7-33, the second worst record in the league. The revamped team includes seven South Korean players, one American player, and a Swedish player. Their American player, Damon “Apply” Conti, is signed to a two-way contract. The team seems to be shifting into a Korean-speaking team, while keeping Kevyn “TviQ” Lindström on their main roster. TviQ, a DPS player, was one of the silver linings for the Mayhem last year. Mainly playing Tracer, Junkrat, and Genji, his skills on the DPS position warranted a spot for Season 2. However, does it warrant a starting spot?
Strengthen the Base
The Mayhem Academy finished NA Contenders Season 2 with an 8-1-11 record. They fell to XL2 Academy (affiliate of the NYXL) in the quarterfinals. Two players from the Mayhem Academy have been promoted to the Mayhem main roster, including Apply and support player Hyeon-woo “HaGoPeun” Jo. The Florida Mayhem have looked to the academy team they set up, and seen two players they felt would improve their team.
The Fusion University are a great example of a strong base. The team went 18-2 in the regular season, and finished 1st in playoffs. The Philadelphia Fusion saw how well they did, and gave their support player Elijah Hudson “Elk” Gallagher a two-way contract. If the Mayhem Academy can step their game up in Contenders, the Florida Mayhem could truly benefit.
Two Steps Forward, One Step Back
Manneten was part of the Misfits squad that would go on to become the Florida Mayhem. Having been playing in the competitive scene since 2016, Manneten has been moving forward for awhile. However, sometimes a step back is just what a player needs to help their career. After a disastrous Season 1, Manneten has taken the step down to Contenders. With the Mayhem Academy, Manneten can become a leader for the team. Having an experienced veteran (who is only 21 years old) can help teams stay composed and focused. His experience will help him give advice and lead the young academy team.
Often times in players’ careers it is necessary to take a “step back” from the highest level. For a sports comparison, take soccer player Gerard Deulofeu. He joined the FC Barcelona youth team at age nine, and grew up there. However, he was unable to break into the first team. He decided that he needed to leave the top club for a “step down.” He ended up joining Everton, an English team based out of Liverpool. At first he joined on loan, and eventually made the permanent move there. He developed into a starter there, and eventually Barcelona brought him back to play for their first team. He took the risk of joining a team that was not as elite. Next thing he knew, he was playing at one of the largest clubs in the world. This story should give inspiration to Manneten.
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