Wow. That’s all I can say after this match. The Boston Uprising were doing well early in the stage… and then Dreamkazper happened. Without their offensive linchpin, plenty of people had their doubts (myself included) about the Uprising’s chances in their next game against New York. New York! How cruel! A team that looked like it could be falling apart, forced up against the most dominant force in the Overwatch League?
Things looked grim, to say the least. Turns out, we needn’t worry. Montecristo said it best- the New England Patriots’ “next man up” philosophy is alive and well in Boston, and the Uprising have proven that they have the depth to make their mark no matter who they put on stage.
The Overwatch League is around the midway point of the season, and with two stages and a playoff left to go, it’s important to recognize the players at the top of their positions making the biggest impact for their team.
Now, the rosters were selected for their specific role. For instances, Byung-sun “Fleta” Kim is a projectile main but can go hitscan and often does. Regardless of this fact, Fleta is a projectile main because that’s his primary role. Only supports don’t make the distinction, but it’s important to recognize the divide between main healers and projectile healers (I didn’t make the distinction).
The 20 best players in the Overwatch League according to their roles. The decision-making process took some heavy analytical thought and pinned uber-talented players against each other. Ultimately, the 20 players on these rosters are as close as you’ll get to the actual all-star game, which takes place after the season in August.
Photo via OWL Twitter
Atlantic: New York Excelsior Saebyeolbe
Sub: Philadelphia Fusion Carpe
Pacific: Los Angeles Valiant Soon
Sub: Los Angeles Gladiators Asher
Saebyeolbe is undoubtedly the best Tracer in the Overwatch League, but Terence “SoOn” Tarlier has been a force for the Los Angeles Valiant in the inaugural season. Unfortunately for the Pacific, the Atlantic is riddled with top-level Tracer play. Facing Saebyeolbe is one thing, but having Carpe on the bench is just cruel.
However, Choi “Asher” Joon-seong is starting to establish himself as the premiere Tracer main in the Pacific and is showing a greater ability to win heads up against other Tracer’s. Regardless of SoOn and Asher’s continued advancement in the Tracer-heavy meta, there’s no better player than Saebyeolbe and Carpe comes as a close second.
Photo via Overwatch League Twitter
Atlantic: New York Excelsior Libero
Sub: Philadelphia Fusion EQO
Pacific: Seoul DynastyFleta
Let me preface this by saying that the league’s best projectile main was just suspended indefinitely which drastically shakes up, not only the Boston Uprising roster but the rest of the Atlantic in terms of playoff placings. In his absence, the New York Excelsior add yet another name to the unofficial all-star game starting lineup as Hae-song “Libero” Kim slots in as the next best choice. The other quick rising name on the list is Fusion’s Josue “EQO” Corona who helped totally transform Philadelphia into a dangerous playoff team.
As for the Pacific, Byung-sun “Fleta” Kim was a natural choice, but outside of his expert level Genji and versatility on many offensive minded heroes, there’s really no other players that came close throughout the Pacific. In recent months, Fleta’s been flat, as has most of the Dynasty roster, but there’s no doubting that a more cohesive team could set Fleta off on a number of different heroes. If an all-star game ever does happen, watch for Fleta to win MVP.
Photo via Overwatch League Twitter
Atlantic: London Spitfire Gesture
Sub: Houston Outlaws Muma
Pacific: Los Angeles Gladiators Fissure
Sub: Los Angeles Valiant Fate
The most intriguing matchup of the entire match will undoubtedly be seeing the former Spitfire main tank against their current starter. Baek “Fissure” Chan-hyung vs. Hong “Gesture” Jae-hee alone would sell tickets. Looking through all the roles, no other matchup seems as balanced as the main tanks. Gesture and Fissure have proven to be the most lethal Winston’s with their high damage totals and thus belong on these squads.
Austin “Muma” Wilmot and Koo “Fate” Pan-seung are no slouches either. The two of the better spacing Winston’s leave such a huge mark on their teams and are very deserving of all-star spot despite the lack of gaudy damage numbers. In fairness, these players don’t have the plays that show up in the kill feed, but their presence is felt even more than the best damage dealers.
Courtesy of: owl report
Atlantic: Houston Outlaws Coolmatt
Sub: new York Excelsior Meko
Pacific: Seoul Dynasty Zunba
Sub: Los Angeles Valiant Envy
Flex tank is always the kid at the party having the most fun. This statement applies to all these tank players, and each one should be looked at as the unsung heroes on their teams. Now, Matt “Coolmatt” Lorio has the best survivability of any D.Va player, and is incredible at turning disadvantageous fights with D.Va’s maneuverability. However, Kim “Meko” Tae-hong is equally good at controlling fights and does a great job distracting for his dynamite damage mains to get in.
The Pacific throws Kim “Zunba” Joon-hyuk, who historically have been the strongest flex player in the world dating back to Apex. This hasn’t changed much since that time, Zunba is the player putting the Dynasty in the best position to win with his methodical and space controlling push style. As for the subs, Kang “Envy” Jae-lee currently is unemployed but based on stats alone, Envy was the most damage intensive D.va in all of the Pacific. Looking forward, expect Indy “Space” Halpern being the next strong D.Va main in the Overwatch League.
2018-03-25 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment
Atlantic: New York Excelsior JJoNak
Atlantic 2: New York Excelsior Ark
Sub: London Sitfire BDosin
Pacific: Seoul Dynasty Tobi
Pacific 2: Los Angeles Gladiators Shaz
Sub: San Francisco Shock Sleepy
The Atlantic has an undeniable advantage in the support department from the stacked Zenyatta’s to the strong Mercy and Lucio play. Bang “JJoNak” Seong-hyun is changing the game as a hybrid-support player with Zenyatta allowing for players to have an impact on all aspects of the game. Choi “BDosin” Seung-tae is no slouch, coming in at second overall in damage output, but no one compares to JJoNak.
The Pacific would have the old Lunatic-Hai duo of Jin-mo “Tobi” Yang and Je-hong “Ryujehong” Ryu, but both have underperformed this season and fell well below their standards of healing. Tobi is still considered one of the best straight healers, but his ability to survive isn’t as efficient as it used to be before this season. It was also tough only choosing one from the Los Angeles Gladiators Finnish-duo, but since the Mercy patch, Jonas “Shaz” Suovaara has separated himself in the Pacific.
For what it’s worth, Ark is still the best overall Mercy and continues to play her and other supports at the highest level possible. Nikola “Sleepy” Andrews is one of the bigger surprises, as his confidence has grown tremendously through this first season. Sleepy’s starting to become a premiere Zenyatta damage dealer.
Take a look at these rosters and tell me this isn’t something that audiences would watch.
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Boston Uprising have terminated the contract of Jonathan “DreamKazper” Sanchez after a brief investigation. The release was due to DreamKazper allegedly being inappropriately involved with a 14 year old Overwatch League fan. Soon after The Uprising put out this statement, a second person came out with allegations of DreamKazper having inappropriate sexual correspondence with them.
The Boston Uprising has terminated the contract of Jonathan “DreamKazper” Sanchez.
Second allegation against Jonathan “DreamKazper” Sanchez
The second person to come out with an allegation is 16. They created another twitter account so as to remain anonymous and posted screenshots from the account. Amongst the screenshots was one where DreamKazper “allegedly” tells them that he is only 2 years older inferring that he is 18 when in fact he is nearly 21.
The $500 DreamKazper is referring to in the screenshot is the cost of a plane ticket which he allegedly bought the person so that they could come and visit him in LA. The person provided a screenshot of the plane ticket.
So far DreamKazper has made no statement on the matter. Seeing as this is most likely now a legal matter it is highly unlikely he will.
There has been no response from Overwatch League since they announced he was indefinitely suspended.
Jonathan “DreamKazper” Sanchez was a day removed from suspension when the Boston Uprising terminated his contract. Sanchez was suspended indefinitely while the Overwatch League and Boston Uprising reviewed and investigated allegations regarding inappropriate interactions with minors. On Monday, another minor spoke up with further allegations and the Uprising swiftly terminated the contract. With only two DPS on the Uprising roster remaining, Mistakes will slot into the role vacated by DreamKazper’s sudden departure.
Mistakes Starting for the Boston Uprising
Mistakes from Robert Paul
Overwatch League stage two is two days away, and therefore Mistakes will be a starting DPS alongside Striker. Mistakes hasn’t been superb in his limited stage time, but he definitely hasn’t been bad. Mistakes has a huge hole to fill, and it won’t be an easy transition for the team. Striker and Mistakes share similar hero pools, and that’s where the real weaknesses will begin to show. DreamKazper made Genji and Pharah look easy to play as, which both of these players will have difficulty with. With rosters locked in for the season, the Boston Uprising will be facing a steep uphill battle to continue contending for the playoffs.
Mistakes subbed for Dreamkazper previously
DreamKazper sat as Mistakes came in against the Florida Mayhem back on March 2nd. On Route 66, Striker and Mistakes ran the gauntlet. Florida wasn’t even able to take the first point. Mistakes showed that he can play heroes like Junkrat and Sombra, heroes not in Striker or DreamKazper’s pools. Sombra has seen an increase in play on the OWL stage as the map pool rotates to favor her, whereas Junkrat has fallen off a bit. The staple heroes have been those of the dive meta, Genji paired with Tracer. Tracer and Widowmaker, or Tracer and Soldier 76 has also been run in many maps. These are the heroes that Mistakes and Striker can switch off on playing reliably, and can work in the current meta. Genji and his Dragonblade are great tools to use on Temple of Anubis however, and that map is in stage three’s rotation.
Possible Off-Season Acquisitions
iddqd from San Francisco Shock
With no trades or signings available until the off-season, the Uprising will have plenty of time to decide on who they want to target. If Mistakes shows well during his time, they could shop him and his Tracer play to grab a player with different hero pools. This could involve them making a deal with the San Francisco Shock for someone like Architect, Babybay or iddqd. These players have taken a backseat to Danteh and Sinatraa at the beginning of stage three. The Houston Outlaws also have a Tracer problem, and trading Mistakes to them at the end for someone like Mendokusaii could benefit them even with limited playing time. Another option for the Uprising is to promote from within, using their Contenders team. Toronto Esports features two DPS at the moment, Dalton and nero.
Overall, the Uprising are facing a difficult path to remain in contention losing a great DPS like DreamKazper. While his play was outstanding, it does not excuse any potential inappropriate behavior he may have engaged in. While at the time it is still being investigated, the texts and screenshots seem damaging enough to Sanchez’s career. As the Overwatch League and Boston Uprising continue, they’ll try and put DreamKazper behind them.
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Earlier today a fourteen-year-old Twitter user revealed that Boston Uprising DPS player, Jonathan “DreamKazper” Sanchez has been inappropriately involved with them. The first accusation came via a google doc. They interacted with DreamKazper through various platforms including Twitter messenger, Snapchat and facetime. Kazper allegedly bought them a PC copy of Overwatch in the very early stages of the relationship.
(Full transcript of Document below)
At the end of the document, the twitter user enclosed a large number of screenshots ofFaceTime calls and inappropriate messages from Dreamkazper. They later took to Twitter to prove that the messages were not faked by scrolling through the direct messages.
The messages also check out in terms of schedule, as Reddit user u/Stealthy_Bird pointed out. Thanks to xQc leaking the fuel’s scrim schedule, we know Dreamkazper was scrimming with Dallas Fuel at the time he said he said he was in direct messages with the twitter user.
There has also been a screenshot provided by another Twitter user. The screenshot alleges that Dreamkazper knew that they were underage. He has allegedly refuted that via direct message with the Twitter user who he was alleged to be inappropriately involved with.
Boston Uprising have released a brief statement via twitter:
The suspension hurts Boston’s chances in the league as they do not have an ideal replacement for his hero pool.
FULL TRANSCRIPT OF DOCUMENT
“I want to address something that I’ve kept in the dark for too long. I am Lily, I am 14 years old and in 9th grade. I was taken advantage of by a 21-year-old player for the Overwatch League. He abused his power as a player to coerce me into sending him nude pictures and engaging in explicit facetime activities.
I have an account on Twitter with the purpose of posting Overwatch League content to support my favorite teams. One day out of the blue, I was followed by one of the players for Boston Uprising, DreamKazper. It caught me off guard but I was flattered, so I dmed him thanking him for the follow. He continued to strike up conversations, which made me feel special that an Overwatch League player actually wanted to talk to me.
During one of the first conversations, he offered to buy me a PC copy of Overwatch. I thought it was strange he was offering to spend money on me, but I was still in shock it was all happening. I accepted and we played together, sometimes with some teammates of his.
Early into the friendship, I had told Kaz I was only 14. I had figured it would have drove him away, but he continued to have interest in talking to me which I didn’t mind. Over the first few days we talked, he progressively got more and more flirty. Complimenting my appearance, and making sexual innuendos that I shrugged off at the time.
As time progressed, it became apparent that we were more than friends. Things started getting sexual very quickly. I had recently gotten out of a relationship and was incredibly vulnerable. The attention he was giving me had blinded me from seeing that what was happening was wrong.
He followed a few of my mutuals at the time and we have a group chat that we added him to. He brought the same sexual comments over into the group chat, knowing most of us were underage. He would continually joke about having my friends nudes, watching porn, and even told the story of him losing his virginity. The group chat has thousands of messages so I could not scroll back up enough to find his texts on it.
Very quickly things escalated between us and I was given his phone number and Snapchat. On Snapchat things disappear quickly, so we would engage in sexual conversations that lead to me sending him a total of two explicit images. He would send me shirtless pictures of him in his boxers on Snapchat, but on Facetime everything was exposed. I obviously cannot show that proof, but the things he has said in screenshots seems to backup my claim. I have proof that we facetimed, the screenshot has a few numbers unblurred to confirm his phone number is actually him.
At the time, it felt nice to have an Overwatch League player be so heavily interested in me. It brought me a lot of confidence, and at the time I was so wrapped up in it, I didn’t realize how wrong the situation was.
I developed feelings for Kaz, which I could tell were unhealthy by as intense as they were getting. He had called me his “dream girl” and really toyed with my feelings. I came to the realization that as a relationship we couldn’t work. Our ages were too far apart and it was starting to feel wrong. At this point I completely cut him out of my life. I later discovered he had been talking to other girls as well, not to mention having a girlfriend at the time.
After talking with close friends on the subject over the course of a month, I realized what a power dynamic it was. I’m stepping forward to hope this doesn’t happen to anyone in the future. DreamKazper should have known better to engage in explicit activity with someone seven years younger than him, especially when he represents a team. He used his social status to blind and take advantage of me.”
The Boston Uprising end the week as the hottest team in the Overwatch league. A complete team effort gets them through one of the roughest weeks in the stage three schedule and sets them up nicely down the line. It also helps in terms of overall seeding, as the Uprising go from sixth to fourth and are close behind the Seoul Dynasty and London Spitfire.
Continually, beating two divisional opponents in a tight race is always important. The 3-2 win over the Philadelphia Fusion was an enormous win considering the Fusion just came off a successful trip to the end of the stage playoffs. On Saturday, the Uprising completely and utterly dismantled the Houston Outlaws, winning in one of the most one-sided games of the season.
Two MVP Candidates on the Uprising DPS-Line
The Uprising has a lot going for them at this moment. This team had little expectations outside of their own building at the start of the season, most saw them as a bottom-four team. With that in mind, pushing the best teams midway through stage three is an excellent sign, and even more important is the emergence of both Jonathon “DreamKazper” Sanchez and Nam-joo “Striker” Kwon at the damage positions.
Both players were known as talented players entering the Overwatch League, but to say both players would be considered MVP-candidates past the midway point is insane. But here we are, Uprising constantly upping their game and finding new ways to use their terrifying damage duo to throw off opposing teams, and after shutting down Jiri “LiNzkr” Masalin and Jacob “JAKE” Lyon, it’s safe to say both players belong in the conversation for best player.
Consider this, among all OWL players Striker currently has the best kill-death ratio of any player and is the top three in all major statistical categories. DreamKazper, on the other hand, leads most categories among the league leaders for projectile players and is the one player who is in the top five for total damage from a non-hitscan player.
Let’s take a more in-depth look at the Uprising victory today and how each player was used. First, the acknowledgment of all the heroes played in today’s match were staggering. A combined six heroes between the two, and in most instances, those switches worked. Looking at Striker’s day, he played a great deal of Junkrat when he’s normally primarily stuck on Tracer. However, on maps like Temple of Anubis, a map the Uprising are 6-0 on this season, he couldn’t be touched from the high-ground. Same goes for Junkertown, and the few times Striker switched off Tracer.
On to DreamKazper, who surprisingly took on Widowmaker duels from Linkzr and came away with an overwhelming lead in head-to-head kills. Putting that in perspective, LiNzkr doesn’t lose in that department. It’s one area the Outlaws always have the advantage on, but DreamKazper made sure that wasn’t the case Saturday. In fact, DreamKazper was having so much success specifically finding LiNzkr, that it brought down the entire Outlaws gameplan. No one could get started on offense and this is the reason why.
Coach Crusty driving force behind Uprising
Coach Crusty before a match. Photo via twitter.com/BostonUprising
Here’s something that simply doesn’t get discussed enough and that’s coaching. Da-hee “Crusty” Park will never get the recognition he deserves for what he’s been able to get out of this team, but on the outside looking in, the Uprising is the best-coached team in the Overwatch League. It’s not only getting the best out of each player, it’s the traits they’ve instilled into these players. The fact that this team rarely overextends and always have Noh “Gamsu” Young-jin always in the right position to dive forward in attack or backward to defend allowing for everyone to play with a safety net.
Additionally, the compositional picks are also making it easier for the players. The Outlaws didn’t have answers for DreamKazper’s Pharah. The Outlaws don’t have a great answer for Pharah on the roster, but that’s the benefit of having DreamKazper ad the main projectile player. The versatility of the DPS-mains and their large hero pools gives Crusty plenty to work with.
It’s quite remarkable to see the growth on this Boston Uprising team. There’s no player more on highlight alert than DreamKazper, who is just unconsciously good on most days. This team’s main problem is consistency, either win-or-lose, this team goes on streaks. Right now, they’re on a winning streak, but only time will tell if this type of play keeps up. Regardless, this team is hitting on all cylinders, and improving at a faster rate than most of the other teams in contention. Good coaching, talent, and the willpower to improve will keep them to their winning ways.
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Stage 2 has not been easy for the Boston Uprising. They lost the first two matches 4-0 Which was a harsh blow to the Uprising’s confidence after a strong stage 1. Their first defeat was chalked down largely to Philadelphia Fusion playing incredibly well with their newly available player Josue “EQO” Corona, although it was clear there were still issues with the Boston side.
Boston’s next match was against a still strong Houston Outlaws team, and once again again Boston lost all four maps. Now the issues were clear. Boston thrived in the mercy meta because Kellex is very comfortable on mercy and they can’t play around mercy as much post nerf.
The next week Boston did exactly what was expected of them. They lost 4-0 to a dominant NYXL and then won 4-0 against a Florida Mayhem that was still struggling. This was the first of three matches thatYoungJin “Gamsu” Noh was to miss. The official statement was that he had to go back to Korea because of an illness. However esports insider and gaming journalist, Rod “Slasher” Bresleau claimed that the absence was due to infighting in the organisation and Boston allegedlywanted to move towards a full western roster.Adding fuel to Boston’s media fire was Support player Connor “Avast” Prince who “liked” the tweet.
Crusty/Gamsu and HuK have different visions on how the team should operate moving forward. In response, Boston has put Gamsu, Striker, and Neko up for sale/trade to other teams with a full-western lineup in mind, and the LA Gladiators declining an initial offer, a source said.
With a bad record and disappointing performances from Boston, some fans on social media got understandably heated on social media.
Quick to douse the flames of speculation was President of gaming for the Kraft group, Chris “HuK” Loranger. He dispelled all rumours via a medium.com Article stating:
“Here at Boston we generally have an open door policy as far as discussing any trades or sales, but we have never came close to selling or trading Gamsu, Striker, or Neko.”
Boston Start to put it back together
With the rumours mostly put to bed, Boston Uprising went back to what Boston did best, Winning. Gamsu returned to the starting squad, leading the team to a 4-0 victory over the Dallas Fuel. Continuing their streak of games that have gone 4-0 both wins and losses. Their streak would come to an end in the next match against the LA Valiant which ended 3-2 in favour of Boston. In the final week of Stage 2, Boston came up against the San Francisco Shock who had Jay “sinatraa” Won playing his second Overwatch League match since turning 18. Sinatraa is known for his tracer play, and is an incredibly talented DPS player. Sinatraa played well for the Shock and had a huge part in winning team fights, However Boston Uprising had Nam-Ju “Striker” Gwonon their side. On the whole striker won out the Tracer matchup in a tense and entertaining match which Boston won 3-2.
Some close matches to close out
With playoffs no longer a possibility, Boston had far less to lose than their final opponents, LA Gladiators. The Gladiators had to win 4-0 against the Uprising to make it to the stage final. All hopes of glory were dashed by Boston in the first map when Uprising won on Volskaya Industries, maintaining their 100% win record on the map. In the end Boston won 3-2 and ended up 6th in both the stage and the season tables.
Courtesy of: The Overwatch League
Overall it was a mixed stage from the Uprising and it was incredibly clear just how valuable Gamsu is seeing the team with and without him in the lineup this stage. We saw more play from mistakes and he was surprisingly good but not enough for a starting spot yet. Kellex was still playing Mercy throughout the stage but showed improvement on other heroes. And of course, Striker and Dreamkazper played incredibly throughout.
Looking Ahead to stage 3
Boston have a decent shot at placing high in the rankings in stage 3. With the next meta likely including Sombra. Uprising have an advantage as they have a dedicated Sombra player in Stanislav “Mistakes” Danilov. Mistakes has impressed on Sombra so far, although Sombra will play differently in stage 3 due to the recent buff.
Recently in Overwatch Contenders (which runs off the live patch) Tracer and Sombra have been played together to great effect. With a Tracer player like Striker, Its hard to see Boston ignoring this strategy. However they may not want to play it too often as Jonathan “DreamKazper” Sanchez is too good and too flexible to sit on the bench.
It’s hard to predict what the future holds for teams in the Overwatch League but so far with no signings or sales, Boston Uprising seem confident in their current roster and won’t have any initial teamwork issues with new players coming in.
Map pool and first matches
The map pool for stage 3 is somewhat favourable for Boston Uprising. They are undefeated on both Volskaya Industries and Temple of Anubis which are the Assault maps in the stage 3 map pool. The Hybrid maps aren’t so good for Boston. They only have a 20% win rate on Numbani and Blizzard World has not been played in the league yet. It will be interesting to see what teams come out with on the new map. The control maps look decent for Boston with an 87% win rate on Ilios and 50% on Nepal. Finally Boston Uprising have a 40% win rate on both Junkertown and Route 66. Although Route 66 is a strong Sombra map so that is likely to increase as the stage goes on.
Week 1 of Stage 3 schedule is exactly the same as Week 1 of stage 2. Boston come up against Stage 2 finalists Philadelphia Fusion and a Houston Outlaws team that is currently an unknown quantity.