Overwatch League – Washington Justice Release Ellivote In Apparent Shift To Full Korean Team

Overwatch League – Washington Justice Release Ellivote In Apparent Shift To Full Korean Team
Credit: Washington Justice via YouTube

Shortly after the Washington Justice officially announced that they’ve added former Vancouver Titans Stitch and JJANU to their roster, comes a surprise twist that some claim they saw coming from a mile away, and it all circles around the language barrier.

To people that have followed the Overwatch League its a tale as old as the Blizzard-led esport; Koreans have tended to dominate the scene, at least until the San Francisco Shock seemingly came out of nowhere in the latter half of season two, led by Super and Sinatraa.

Yet Korean-led teams are still prevalent in the league, regardless of what city the team is to represent. This phenomenon within the League is what led Paris Eternal player Kruise to coin the infamous term ‘Seoul Spitfire’, sending barbs towards the London Spitfire for not having players from London.

Frankly, however, if teams want to be able to compete on the highest levels, players from South Korea are prime pickings. In the culture of South Korea, where gaming has been a staple in their culture for decades, Overwatch took off massively which resulted in some of the best players in the world simply being Korean.

Along with this comes a stipulation: some of the best players only speak Korean.

As esport teams tend to be ‘make or break’ based on the communication, having a full roster that can fluently speak a ‘core language’ is vital. Thus, rosters tend to be overwhelmingly (if not entirely) Korean if management opts to one or two Korean stars.

With this all in mind, it appears that the Washington Justice’s announcement regarding their pickup of JJANU and Stitch is setting in motion a larger play; the Washington Justice are more than likely shifting their roster to an all-Korean roster for ease of communication.

The team has announced via Twitter that they’ve released Elliot ‘Ellivote’ Vaneryd. If the team is aiming at a full-Korean roster, it’s likely that Lukas ‘LullSiSH’ Wiklund is on his way out as well, leaving a gap in the main tank space for the roster.

It’s important to note that ‘LullSiSH’ being released hasn’t been confirmed; it’s only likely if the Washington Justice is aiming for a full Korean roster. The main tank has been inactive on the roster since February 2020.

Whatever shifts the Washinton Justice is making, it couldn’t come sooner. The team has struggled in recent showings and is currently second to last in season points; the Boston Uprising is the only team that currently sits beneath them in ratings. A roster overhaul could be just what the doctor ordered to bring some Justice to their division.