With the teams in the Overwatch League preparing for Overwatch 2, the Atlanta Reign have traded their star player and 2021 Rookie of the Year Oh “Pelican” Se-hyun to the Houston Outlaws. This marks another step in both teams retooling for the 2022 Overwatch League season, as Pelican looks to start on a strong duo alongside recently re-signed Dante “Danteh” Cruz. This trade didn’t have any players going to Atlanta, according to the Outlaws’ Twitter account.
— Houston Outlaws (@Outlaws) October 18, 2021
Pelican’s path to the Outlaws
Pelican came into the 2021 Overwatch League season as a possible candidate for the Rookie of the Year award. His potential was there, as many other players stated in the press conference just before the 2021 season began. Yet, with how little the Atlanta Reign’s roster and staff changed around his signing, the pressure was on him to perform. Coming from O2 Blast in Korean Contenders in the 2020 offseason, his skill was undeniable. But synergy takes time, especially with a mixed language roster.
But, he started off hot and only got better as the season went on. Known for his Echo play and his flexibility, Pelican’s adaptations to the bans was the reason Atlanta visited Hawaii frequently. He became a heavy favorite for the Rookie of the Year award. He helped bring the Reign to Hawaii for the season playoffs. Pelican even played great then despite a collapsed lung preventing him from playing with his team. Playing in Los Angeles, Atlanta made a surprise run to the finals but lost to the Shanghai Dragons. With Overwatch 2 on the horizon, the Reign had to rethink what their roster would look like. It looks like Pelican wasn’t in their plans.
With Pelican joining the team, the only players Houston have on their roster are Pelican, Danteh, tank player Shin “PIGGY ” Min-jun and veteran flex player-coach Jacob “JAKE” Lyon. Adding Pelican along with those players they kept only makes the Houston Outlaws more flexible. Going down that route of team flexibility heading into Overwatch 2 makes sense.