The eyes of Europe are on the Paris Eternal as they enter into the Overwatch League. While Europe has had the London Spitfire to represent them, it is a full Korean team. Now, Europe has a truly European team with European players to represent them, and the fans love it.
At media day, I had the chance to sit down with head coach Julien “daemoN” Ducros and DPS players Terence “SoOn” Tarlier and George “ShaDowBurn” Gushcha to talk about the upcoming season.
The following interview has been edited and condensed for clarity and length.
JY: Welcome to Season 2 of the Overwatch League, how does it feel to represent Paris?Coach daemoN: Obviously, we’re excited. All of Europe being behind us is really good for us because we know we’ll have support.
SoOn: I come from France, so I’m happy to be able to represent my country. We’re a full European team and we want to show that European players are still at the top.
ShaDowBurn: For me, French fans are showing me a lot of love and I’m really proud to represent Paris.
JY: You two have been here for a full season already, how do you feel about the new schedule for OWL?SoOn: For people who love to be on stage, it’s pretty bad because there are fewer matches. But from a professional aspect, the results will be better.
ShaDowBurn: I feel like preparation matters a lot and when you have more time to prepare for matches it will be better for allowing teams to show their very best and/or prepare better strategies for teams.
Coach daemoN: We’ll also be avoiding burnout, as well. For instance, when you have eight maps to work on with two different opponents, you don’t really have the opportunity to show a good game for both of those. Right now, the change will help avoid burnout and help emphasize the quality of a game that we can put on as a team.
JY: How do you feel about GOATS and how it will evolve this season?Coach daemoN: I think before Stage 1, they tried to nerf it as much as possible. It was a good attempt, but it didn’t end up as expected. Still, I think the changes are good because it makes it so we can have some variation on GOATS. You need to be able to adapt.
For this Season, I think we’ll see some change. For Season 1 we had three different Metas. We can expect a lot of change I think.
JY: We have home weekends this season to test out the localization model. How do you think it’s going to affect players?Coach daemoN: In our case, we’re going to Dallas. I think it will be interesting because this is what Blizzard wants to do eventually. Having an introduction to it is good for us.
We just need to be prepared for the travel, playing there, and playing in front of a crowd that will be supporting other teams. There’s a lot of things to take into consideration, but it will be a good experience for everyone.
JY: How do you guys feel about the other new teams that are coming in? Who do you think will be the team to watch?SoOn: Hangzhou Spark.
ShaDowBurn: It’s interesting to watch every team in the beginning because you want to see how they perform. Only time will show how much better they can be in terms of performance in the long-term.
JY: Is there a reason you say the Spark?SoOn: They have a lot of talented players and they have been doing very well in scrims. because a lot of people might expect the expansions teams not to be as good as the Season 1 teams.
JY: Some of that conversation has been around the whole offline versus online experience for existing teams and the expansion teams. Do you think that is a distinct advantage for the existing teams?Coach daemoN: Of course, when you’re building a new team from ground zero, for example, us, you don’t have that synergy and communication from the experience. The Season 2 teams will have to build what they need in Stage 1.
JY: How do you guys feel about the push to broadcast OWL more heavily?Coach daemoN: I think it’s good. Nate was talking about DisneyXD on how we can build a generation that is looking forward to streaming competitive Overwatch. This is so good for things like that.
Going for mainstream TV as well will help to get as much recognition as possible. Overwatch League is doing a great job on covering every aspect of the media.
JY: Great answer. Final question, anything you want to say to your fans?SoOn: Thank you for supporting us. For an expansion team, it is pretty hard to have fans, and we are lucky to have them and represent Paris. We are really proud.
ShaDowBurn: I want to say that we will work really hard to make our fans happy.
Photo Credit: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment
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