The Shanghai Dragons announced via Twitter that Chao “Undead” Fang was released from the team. Since the Overwatch League started, the Shanghai Dragons have yet to win their first game. A bright spot from these games is Undead was performing decently until his departure. He tried to carry games using heroes like Widowmaker, McCree, and Soldier: 76. The continued losses put an immense amount of pressure and stress on the team — so much so that their other DPS player Weida “Diya” Lu took time away to tend to family affairs.

Problems at home

Prior to the Dragons’ announcement, Rod “Slasher” Breslau broke a story that Undead will return home.  This started speculations ahead of the official release that Undead may be let go, and fuel was added to the fire when Weibo (Chinese version of Twitter) post by Undead’s girlfriend which stated the following — translated by Reddit user, bata12:

TBH, this is also my own fault, I choose not to break up with you after your first cheat, this leads to the second and the third cheat. I’m always defending you, but your brutality is just out of my imagination, alright, I can finally let myself go. That girl still have a boyfriend now, isn’t she? Don’t worry, you two can be together, like forever, till death do you apart. I’ll be sorry if you two don’t get married.

In response to the statement, Undead released his own statement regarding his personal affairs. In it, he reveals the stresses of being a professional player in the league and of being away from friends and family. While he does explain how the stress eventually led to him cheating on his partner, the stress of the Overwatch League and losing her may be why he wanted to return home.

Since i’ve joined OWL, the 13 hours of training every day has mentally and physically drained me. The pressure of the public made me want to prove myself so much. It caused me to feel overstressed and I couldn’t handle my feelings. At first, we were happy talking with each other. But an hour would pass, and before we knew it we stopped talking. I don’t know if it was your work that was making you stressed out but I can’t help you because this competition is too much to vent at you.

 

The new Dragons

Following the recent departures of Undead and Diya, and the loss of their coach Chen “U4” Congshan, the team decided major changes needed to be made. The Dragons’ manager Yang Van stated they hired a sports psychologist to help with team’s psyche. After so many losses in game and within their team, it’s not surprising that morale is low for Dragons.

It’s not all bad news for the Dragons, however, as their replacement members are slowly arriving in the US. New coach Xingrui “RUI” Wang has just arrived in the US along with two new members.

Additionally, Eui-Seok “Fearless” Lee,  and Gi-hyeon “Ado” Chon and Kim “Geguri” Se-yeon were added to fill in the roster holes for the last week of Stage 2. With Stage 3 on the horizon, they are banking on significantly improving with new additions, new tactics, and a fresh new outlook.