Ophelie Castelot
Ophelie Castelot
Ophelie is both an esport and journalism lover. She is the former head of the CS:GO section for a major esport website. Ophelie has been analyzing Overwatch ever since its release in 2016.

Overwatch League: NXYL Signs 2019 Rookie of the Year Haksal

Overwatch League player Haksal gives the camera a peace sign as he stands with his rookie of the year trophy
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The New York Excelsior announced the signing of flex DPS Hyojong “Haksal” Kim.


The New York Excelsior welcomes the 2019 OWL Rookie of the Year: Hyojong “Haksal” Kim.

Kim’s nickname, meaning “massacre” in Korean, is consistent with his gameplay. Kim is mainly known for his insane Genji plays, harassing enemies’ backlane and wrecking an entire team with his nanoblade. He was awarded for his gameplay for the first time in 2017, winning the MVP Vote award with RunAway during the Overwatch APEX Season 4. When the RunAway roster joined the Overwatch League with Vancouver Titans, Kim helped his team secure second place at the tournament winning the Overwatch League 2019 Rookie of the Year award.

Is Haksal the right pick for NYXL?

New York Excelsior already has a packed damage line, with no less than 4 DPS players. Jong-ryeol “Saebyeolbe” Park, the team captain, mainly plays hitscan heroes. When he cannot play or when the situation requires two hitscan players, Yeon-kwan “Nenne” Jeong joins in with his Widowmaker or McCree.

Team Captain, Jong-ryeol "Saebyeolbe" Park, sits at his PC with the monitor behind him, giving the camera a thumbs up sign.

The team also has two flex DPS players: Hae-seong “Libero” Kim and Seung-jun “WhoRU” Lee.

Libero has been with the team since 2017. He is a former player for Meta Athena and has been consistent in his gameplay ever since. With New York Excelsior, he won the Overwatch League Inaugural and ended up in the third-place after losing to Philadelphia Fusion in Semifinals. He also represented South Korea in the 2018 Overwatch World Cup and brought the trophy to his home country.

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Libero at his PC, concentrates during a game of Overwatch

WhoRU is the latest recruit for New York Excelsior. The 18-year-old is mainly playing Genji, Doomfist and Tracer. With his former team Lunatic-Hai, he won the APEX Season 2 and Season 3. He then won the Overwatch Contenders 2018 North America Season 1 and Season 2 with Fusion University.

WhoRU sits with headset on, ready to play a round of Overwatch

As Haksal is joining the New York Excelsior, three players now share the same hero pool. Whether the team will bench a player permanently, trade them to another team or make a 3-player rotation is still unknown. The Overwatch League resumes on June 13, which gives enough time to the team to find their perfect damage players’ balance.

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