Eight teams are set to participate in Overwatch Contenders 2019 Season 1: Pacific. Of the eight teams, Nova Monster Shield Nova Monster Shield Inactive , Xavier Esports Xavier Esports Contenders PAC Rank #11 , Talon Esports Talon Esports Contenders PAC Rank #1 , and Cyclone Coupling Cyclone Coupling Inactive will be returning from Season 3 in 2018. The new teams joining this season of Contenders are Global Esports Global Esports Contenders PAC Rank #9 , JUPITER JUPITER Inactive , KIX KIX Inactive , and Giant Lynx Giant Lynx Inactive .
Nova Monster Shield previously went by the name Nova eSports in Season 3. The organization announced a merger with Taiwanese esports organization Monster Shield in January. The team finished in second place last season, and will be seeking greater heights with a mostly unchanged roster this season.
We're excited to announce our joint venture with Monster Shield, one of Taiwan's premier esports organizations, to strengthen and develop esports in the Greater China region. #NovaMS🇹🇼— Nova Esports (@NovaEsportsTeam) January 2, 2019
Read more: https://t.co/ozRaf2lOH4 pic.twitter.com/lgx7Rn7OUg
Xavier Esports returns for their fourth Contenders appearance. They played in all three seasons of Contenders last season. The Thai team look to best their Season 2 performance, which saw them bow out in the semifinals in a tight 3-2 loss against Japanese team CYCLOPS athlete gaming CYCLOPS athlete gaming Inactive .
Cyclone Coupling finished in the semifinals last season. However, as they had ended up in fourth place in their group, the Chinese team was relegated to Trials. Managing to defeat every team except for Singaporean team Incipience, Cyclone Coupling placed second in Trials, good for another appearance in Contenders this season.
Talon Esports also returns to Contenders Pacific in 2019. Champions of Contenders Pacific in Season 2 last year, Talon lost to Chinese team Cyclone Coupling in the quarterfinals last season. They also attempted to qualify for Contenders Korea 2019 Season 1, but fell short in Trials, finishing in seventh place. Due to the new region lock for Contenders, Talon now boasts a mixed Korean-Thai-Taiwanese lineup for 2019. Most notable of which is oPuTo , who returns from a hiatus after playing for MEGA Esports MEGA Esports Inactive in Season 2 last year.
We are going to jump the gun a little here before the official announcement 🤫🤫🤫 Introducing Talon's new squad for @ContendersOW Pacific 2019. This is going to be different 😬🇰🇷🇹🇭🇹🇼— Talon eSports (@Talon__eSports) February 25, 2019
🧙♂️@Arachneesports #Overwatch pic.twitter.com/YyLaGr5HLk
JUPITER is a Japanese organization whose Overwatch team was established in December of 2018. Six of the team's members played for CYCLOPS athlete gaming CYCLOPS athlete gaming Inactive , who clinched the runner-up position in Season 2 of Contenders Pacific in 2018. They also represented Japan in the Overwatch World Cup in 2018. JUPITER emerged at the top of Open Division Season 1 2019: Pacific, and finished third in the most recent season of Trials.
Giant Lynx formed from the merger of two of Thailand's top teams: Giant Esports Giant Esports Inactive and LYNX TH LYNX TH Inactive . Both teams that made up Giant Lynx played in Season 3 of Contenders in 2018, both finishing last place in their groups. Giant Lynx participated in Trials this year, clinching fifth place. Recently, main tank Teetawat was announced to have been loaned to Australian organization Sydney Drop Bears Sydney Drop Bears Inactive to participate in Contenders Australia.
Global Esports is an Indian organization who has had several Overwatch teams since 2017. Most notably, the organization owned GE Pantheon KR GE Pantheon KR Inactive , a mostly Korean team that played in Contenders 2018 Season 3, losing in the quarterfinals to Nova eSports. Global Esports' newest team previously went by the name Incipience. The team played in Contenders Season 2 last year after qualifying from Trials, but ended up in last place of their group. Incipience qualified for this season of Contenders after finishing first in Trials.
One notable team missing from this season of Contenders is defending champions Hong Kong Attitude Hong Kong Attitude Inactive . A staple of the Pacific region since 2017, they earned their first championship title in Season 3 of Contenders last year. Shortly following their win, it was announced that the roster had been transferred to an Overwatch League academy team. The team did not reform for 2019, and their spot in Contenders was replaced by KIX KIX Inactive .
KIX is a Macanese esports organization fielding a mostly Taiwanese lineup. They played in the two most recent seasons of Open Division, but never finished above top eight. The most notable player from KIX is JazZy , who represented Hong Kong in the Overwatch World Cup 2018 and briefly played for LGD Gaming LGD Gaming Inactive in China. This will be the first time JazZy plays in Contenders Pacific.
PHOENiX PHOENiX Inactive and GE Pantheon KR GE Pantheon KR Inactive will not be returning to Contenders following their playoffs stints in the last season of Contenders. PHOENiX placed 3rd-4th while GE Pantheon KR placed 5th-8th. Both teams fielded majority Korean lineups that would lead them to be ineligible to play in Contenders Pacific following the Contenders region lock taking effect in 2019. The two teams are replaced by JUPITER and Giant Lynx for the upcoming season of Contenders.
Contenders Pacific return on Feburary 28th with a match between KIX and Talon Esports.