Seagull leaves NRG starting six as Mendokusaii joins

Fan favourite Seagull is stepping down from the active NRG roster to be replaced by Mendokusaii, over.gg has learned. Seagull plans to return to professional play for the Overwatch League's first season, but in the interim he will be focusing on his streaming career while remaining on the roster as a substitute.

Seagull has been an original member of the core roster since the Overwatch beta, quickly becoming one of the most beloved personalities within the game. He has had to balance an enormous, explosive streaming career with professional play in Overwatch's growing esports scene, previously speaking in interviews about his desire to prioritise competition.

Brandon Seagull Larned spoke on his decision today, saying:

Hey everyone,

This will be a surprise to most of you, but today I'm announcing that I'm stepping down from NRG's main Overwatch roster to a sub position.

For the past year, it's become obvious that I struggle with maintaining a balance between professional play and streaming. When I originally blew up on twitch, I decided that I was still dedicated to being a pro player. This hasn't changed.

However, in the current Overwatch pro scene, we're in limbo while we wait for the Overwatch League to start up later in the year. I've been struggling to justify giving up streaming hours to play in the competitive scene during this downtime. As any competitive FPS player knows, it's tough maintaining motivation for small online tournaments - particularly when I knew I was letting down my fanbase by not having a regular stream.

So for now, I'll be stepping back from the competitive scene. In the meantime, I'll be streaming under NRG as their biggest cheerleader for their OW team.

Expect to see me back in pro play for Overwatch League's first season.

Replacing him on the roster is former Cloud9 player Mendokusaii, who recently stepped down along with teammate ryb from the starting C9 roster earlier this week. It was previously reported that he would be playing with Red Reserve, his brother's team, at the Copenhagen Games tournament this weekend but he has now confirmed that he will no longer be attending, required instead in the Overwatch Monthly Melee for NRG.

Mendokusaii seems a fitting replacement for NRG; he is both a popular and entertaining player in his own right, as well as having a deep hero pool that will allow for a large amount of flexibility within the team. Many of the players on NRG have particular heroes for which they are well known, but Mendo is truly a jack of all trades whose addition may come to be a benefit for the team in the long run.

This news follows shortly after over.gg reported that Rogue and NRG would be the invited teams to Korea for APEX Season 3. NRG have not played a series with their new roster since signing iddqd, Ajax, and harbleu; their first scheduled tournament since MLG Vegas in late 2016 is the upcoming Overwatch Monthly Melee: April this weekend.

NRG's President Brett Lautenbach said about the move:

Seagull has been an incredible member of NRG Overwatch, and while we're sad to see him step down from the active roster we are thrilled that he is staying in the NRG Family. We are excited to announce that Mendo will be stepping in to fill Seagull's role. Mendo is an incredible competitor and an excellent addition to the roster.

The new NRG roster is now:

  • Lucas "Mendokusaii" Håkansson (DPS)
  • André "iddqd" Dahlström (DPS)
  • Anthony "harbleu" Ballo (Flex)
  • Seb "numlocked" Barton (Tank)
  • Tim "dummy" Olson (Support)
  • Alex "Ajax" Jackson (Support)
#1
5 Frags +

according to a lil birdie

according to a lil birdie
#2
5 Frags +

Big

Big
#3
6 Frags +

i mean im always excited to see mendo play
OGN has to feel kind of dumb right now though

i mean im always excited to see mendo play
OGN has to feel kind of dumb right now though
#4
14 Frags +

⋛⋋( ՞ਊ ՞)⋌⋚ FLOCKED BY A SEAGULL ⋛⋋( ՞ਊ ՞)⋌⋚

⋛⋋( ՞ਊ ՞)⋌⋚ FLOCKED BY A SEAGULL ⋛⋋( ՞ਊ ՞)⋌⋚
#5
15 Frags +

not even casting will stop sideshow from writing articles

not even casting will stop sideshow from writing articles
#6
19 Frags +

lmao ogn on suicide watch

lmao ogn on suicide watch
#7
0 Frags +

How does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?

How does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?
#8
12 Frags +
RevelsHow does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?

the league isn't gonna let him not be a part of it, would be a terrible loss pr wise

[quote=Revels]How does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?[/quote]
the league isn't gonna let him not be a part of it, would be a terrible loss pr wise
#9
1 Frags +
RevelsHow does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?

There are no confirmed teams for OWL

[quote=Revels]How does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?[/quote]
There are no confirmed teams for OWL
#10
0 Frags +
pendaRevelsHow does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?There are no confirmed teams for OWL

No, but it doesn't seem like it'll be some sort of draft. They'll pick certain teams, which will use the rosters they have in place at that time.

[quote=penda][quote=Revels]How does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?[/quote]
There are no confirmed teams for OWL[/quote]
No, but it doesn't seem like it'll be some sort of draft. They'll pick certain teams, which will use the rosters they have in place at that time.
#11
1 Frags +

Interesting, kind of disappointing. Its been said before that he wants the drive of competition more than the money from streaming. Gl Mendo

Interesting, kind of disappointing. Its been said before that he wants the drive of competition more than the money from streaming. Gl Mendo
#12
7 Frags +

Wow. Honestly did not see this coming.

Wow. Honestly did not see this coming.
#13
1 Frags +
pendaRevelsHow does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?There are no confirmed teams for OWL

This.

You guys are jumping to conclusions and making assumptions just like you do on every news post. Wait for OWL to actually start before worrying about rosters

[quote=penda][quote=Revels]How does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?[/quote]
There are no confirmed teams for OWL[/quote]
This.

You guys are jumping to conclusions and making assumptions just like you do on every news post. Wait for OWL to actually start before worrying about rosters
#14
1 Frags +
RevelspendaRevelsHow does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?There are no confirmed teams for OWLNo, but it doesn't seem like it'll be some sort of draft. They'll pick certain teams, which will use the rosters they have in place at that time.

Not necessarily, spots are based on bidding so there might be some sort of draft and if there is then seagull would be highly valued

[quote=Revels][quote=penda][quote=Revels]How does he expect to play OWL season 1 when those teams will have established rosters?[/quote]
There are no confirmed teams for OWL[/quote]
No, but it doesn't seem like it'll be some sort of draft. They'll pick certain teams, which will use the rosters they have in place at that time.[/quote]
Not necessarily, spots are based on bidding so there might be some sort of draft and if there is then seagull would be highly valued
#15
2 Frags +

Dafuq

Dafuq
#16
4 Frags +

I just ordered a stuffed seagull this morning

I just ordered a stuffed seagull this morning
#17
3 Frags +

Kind FeelsBad, but hope he's happy. Also streaming more than once a year will be fun to watch

Kind FeelsBad, but hope he's happy. Also streaming more than once a year will be fun to watch
#18
4 Frags +

Assuming they really are invited to APEX, his reasoning makes no sense. What "small online tournaments" is he talking about?

Assuming they really are invited to APEX, his reasoning makes no sense. What "small online tournaments" is he talking about?
#19
2 Frags +

It's not completely shocking but it most certainly wasn't expected.

It's not completely shocking but it most certainly wasn't expected.
#20
3 Frags +

It's clearly the right financial decision at this point. Without the OWL, the money just isn't there (for everything except APEX/APAC, and you've gotta be godly to get the real money). The money is there right now on Twitch. And if you're Seagull, your fame is enough to get you a good spot in the league if you want it.

I'm personally a bit sad to see Seagull shelve the competitive dream after rebuilding the roster and scrimming for months (we didn't even get a single tourney!), but hopefully the OWL thing doesn't take too long to come together.

seagCaw.

It's clearly the right financial decision at this point. Without the OWL, the money just isn't there (for everything except APEX/APAC, and you've gotta be godly to get the real money). The money is there right now on Twitch. And if you're Seagull, your fame is enough to get you a good spot in the league if you want it.

I'm personally a bit sad to see Seagull shelve the competitive dream after rebuilding the roster and scrimming for months (we didn't even get a single tourney!), but hopefully the OWL thing doesn't take too long to come together.

seagCaw.
#21
53 Frags +

cant lose if you dont play

cant lose if you dont play
#22
4 Frags +

Well that won't work. Except for Seagull.

Well that won't work. Except for Seagull.
#23
0 Frags +

So when the OWL hits does Seagull rejoin NRG and Mendo gets kicked or does he have to find a new team
If i was a player i wouldn't really want to leave an org like NRG

So when the OWL hits does Seagull rejoin NRG and Mendo gets kicked or does he have to find a new team
If i was a player i wouldn't really want to leave an org like NRG
#24
9 Frags +

Yung gull says he'll be back in pro play for OWL, but no mention of who with :D

Yung gull says he'll be back in pro play for OWL, but no mention of who with :D
#25
0 Frags +
KarmaSo when the OWL hits does Seagull rejoin NRG and Mendo gets kicked or does he have to find a new team
If i was a player i wouldn't really want to leave an org like NRG

And NRG wouldn't want to lose him (unless they get a sick-ass buyout offer). Sounds like a pretty solid deal for Brandon. The dream.

(Sucks for the rest of the roster, though! Well, at least it sucks for anyone in the DPS hotseat.)

[quote=Karma]So when the OWL hits does Seagull rejoin NRG and Mendo gets kicked or does he have to find a new team
If i was a player i wouldn't really want to leave an org like NRG[/quote]

And NRG wouldn't want to lose him (unless they get a sick-ass buyout offer). Sounds like a pretty solid deal for Brandon. The dream.

(Sucks for the rest of the roster, though! Well, at least it sucks for anyone in the DPS hotseat.)
#26
-2 Frags +

I assume Mendo is the projectile player and if they do decided to run pharmercy,mendo needs to pull an AKM and hit some nutty direct hits

I assume Mendo is the projectile player and if they do decided to run pharmercy,mendo needs to pull an AKM and hit some nutty direct hits
#27
11 Frags +

1/3rd of team has infamous personality issues. Seagull balanced iddqd. This version seems suddenly much less likely to perform.

1/3rd of team has infamous personality issues. Seagull balanced iddqd. This version seems suddenly much less likely to perform.
#28
3 Frags +
JingoIt's clearly the right financial decision at this point. Without the OWL, the money just isn't there (for everything except APEX/APAC, and you've gotta be godly to get the real money). The money is there right now on Twitch. And if you're Seagull, your fame is enough to get you a good spot in the league if you want it.

I'm personally a bit sad to see Seagull shelve the competitive dream after rebuilding the roster and scrimming for months (we didn't even get a single tourney!), but hopefully the OWL thing doesn't take too long to come together.

seagCaw.

Um....you realize theyre salaried right?

The majority of the prize money probably goes to NRG, depending on how their contract is.

[quote=Jingo]It's clearly the right financial decision at this point. Without the OWL, the money just isn't there (for everything except APEX/APAC, and you've gotta be godly to get the real money). The money is there right now on Twitch. And if you're Seagull, your fame is enough to get you a good spot in the league if you want it.

I'm personally a bit sad to see Seagull shelve the competitive dream after rebuilding the roster and scrimming for months (we didn't even get a single tourney!), but hopefully the OWL thing doesn't take too long to come together.

seagCaw.[/quote]
Um....you realize theyre salaried right?

The majority of the prize money probably goes to NRG, depending on how their contract is.
#29
-5 Frags +

but... but now they won't have a good genji player:S

but... but now they won't have a good genji player:S
#30
1 Frags +

Makes it sound like they'll just be rotating in DPS for his spot until OWL. Sounds like NRG will let him come back when he's ready.
Maybe he really really didn't want to travel back to Korea!

Makes it sound like they'll just be rotating in DPS for his spot until OWL. Sounds like NRG will let him come back when he's ready.
Maybe he really really didn't want to travel back to Korea!
#31
-13 Frags +

As he was (him and his team) getting rekt in scrims by Rogue all the time (you can ask Unkoe or any member of rogue) and also by selfless i think
The reality is that he realised that he has not the level to compete in LANs, so in order to keep his image of super star streamer, he wanted to step back from NRG. You dont leave a new growing team just like that.

Or maybe it could just be the fact that he simply wanna make money out of his stream business.

its just a theory based on facts

As he was (him and his team) getting rekt in scrims by Rogue all the time (you can ask Unkoe or any member of rogue) and also by selfless i think
The reality is that he realised that he has not the level to compete in LANs, so in order to keep his image of super star streamer, he wanted to step back from NRG. You dont leave a new growing team just like that.

Or maybe it could just be the fact that he simply wanna make money out of his stream business.

its just a theory based on facts
#32
1 Frags +
GuineaJingoIt's clearly the right financial decision at this point. Without the OWL, the money just isn't there (for everything except APEX/APAC, and you've gotta be godly to get the real money). The money is there right now on Twitch. And if you're Seagull, your fame is enough to get you a good spot in the league if you want it.

I'm personally a bit sad to see Seagull shelve the competitive dream after rebuilding the roster and scrimming for months (we didn't even get a single tourney!), but hopefully the OWL thing doesn't take too long to come together.

seagCaw.
Um....you realize theyre salaried right?

The majority of the prize money probably goes to NRG, depending on how their contract is.

I do realize that, yes. Which is why I said the money isn't good enough for the low-stakes online tourneys. (Also, they may be salaried, but winnings typically mean big bonuses for the players as incentives. From an org perspective, the prize money is peanuts compared to merchandise sales as a result of the team's performance/popularity. No huge motivation for them to pocket more than a share of the pot.)

[quote=Guinea][quote=Jingo]It's clearly the right financial decision at this point. Without the OWL, the money just isn't there (for everything except APEX/APAC, and you've gotta be godly to get the real money). The money is there right now on Twitch. And if you're Seagull, your fame is enough to get you a good spot in the league if you want it.

I'm personally a bit sad to see Seagull shelve the competitive dream after rebuilding the roster and scrimming for months (we didn't even get a single tourney!), but hopefully the OWL thing doesn't take too long to come together.

seagCaw.[/quote]
Um....you realize theyre salaried right?

The majority of the prize money probably goes to NRG, depending on how their contract is.[/quote]

I do realize that, yes. Which is why I said the money isn't good enough for the low-stakes online tourneys. (Also, they may be salaried, but winnings typically mean big bonuses for the players as incentives. From an org perspective, the prize money is peanuts compared to merchandise sales as a result of the team's performance/popularity. No huge motivation for them to pocket more than a share of the pot.)
#33
0 Frags +

inb4 OGN announces a different team to be invited.

inb4 OGN announces a different team to be invited.
#34
16 Frags +

I think Seagull is being smart. The streaming hours are better, the money is enormously better, and the only whale in the puddle of nickel-and-dime tournaments is APEX. APEX requires months of commitment, being cooped up in a hotel room practicing 10 hours a day, and a scant chance of winning. It makes a lot of sense to take a break, enjoy life, make money, relieve burnout, and come back fresh for the real deal for Western players. And if for some reason pro gaming doesn't work out he's already got a nice start on a college or house fund.

I think Seagull is being smart. The streaming hours are better, the money is enormously better, and the only whale in the puddle of nickel-and-dime tournaments is APEX. APEX requires months of commitment, being cooped up in a hotel room practicing 10 hours a day, and a scant chance of winning. It makes a lot of sense to take a break, enjoy life, make money, relieve burnout, and come back fresh for the real deal for Western players. And if for some reason pro gaming doesn't work out he's already got a nice start on a college or house fund.
#35
1 Frags +

He'll for sure have no problem finding a team for OWL. He's like an IRL Krusher99. As long as something tragic doesn't happen to destroy the hype of his stream i'm sure he's golden.

He'll for sure have no problem finding a team for OWL. He's like an IRL Krusher99. As long as something tragic doesn't happen to destroy the hype of his stream i'm sure he's golden.
#36
-14 Frags +
laseralpacainb4 OGN announces a different team to be invited.

lazer kittens deserve invite

[quote=laseralpaca]inb4 OGN announces a different team to be invited.[/quote]

lazer kittens deserve invite
#37
1 Frags +

ok

ok
#38
12 Frags +

I've been waiting 4 month for nrg to play in a tournament, and seagull does this to me ....

I've been waiting 4 month for nrg to play in a tournament, and seagull does this to me ....
#39
1 Frags +
majkel1893laseralpacainb4 OGN announces a different team to be invited.
lazer kittens deserve invite

7 downvotes im pretty sure the sarcasm in the overwatch community is not as good as in the csgo community

[quote=majkel1893][quote=laseralpaca]inb4 OGN announces a different team to be invited.[/quote]

lazer kittens deserve invite[/quote]

7 downvotes im pretty sure the sarcasm in the overwatch community is not as good as in the csgo community
#40
7 Frags +

OGN is just afraid to invite Laser Kittenz. They'd show midtier Kr teams that they're still mid tier Kr teams. After all, Koreans are actually really overrated.

OGN is just afraid to invite Laser Kittenz. They'd show midtier Kr teams that they're still mid tier Kr teams. After all, Koreans are actually really overrated.
#41
6 Frags +
roadtodumpstermajkel1893laseralpacainb4 OGN announces a different team to be invited.
lazer kittens deserve invite

7 downvotes im pretty sure the sarcasm in the overwatch community is not as good as in the csgo community

Or maybe he's bad at sarcasm

[quote=roadtodumpster][quote=majkel1893][quote=laseralpaca]inb4 OGN announces a different team to be invited.[/quote]

lazer kittens deserve invite[/quote]

7 downvotes im pretty sure the sarcasm in the overwatch community is not as good as in the csgo community[/quote]
Or maybe he's bad at sarcasm
#42
0 Frags +

Choke :(

Choke :(
#43
1 Frags +

Damn Brandon....

Damn Brandon....
#44
4 Frags +

If that's the case i'm expecting a stream tonight lol since you don't have to worry about monthly melee!!

If that's the case i'm expecting a stream tonight lol since you don't have to worry about monthly melee!!
#45
7 Frags +

IMO Talespin would have been a much better pick for NRG.

IMO Talespin would have been a much better pick for NRG.
#46
16 Frags +

it's gotta be a joke.

>doesn't play for months cuz not enough time scrimming together
>brings in someone new right before a tournament

>doesn't play because some players are in europe
>brings in a new player that is located in europe

????????????????????????????????????

it's gotta be a joke.

>doesn't play for months cuz not enough time scrimming together
>brings in someone new right before a tournament

>doesn't play because some players are in europe
>brings in a new player that is located in europe

????????????????????????????????????
#47
1 Frags +
TepocateIf that's the case i'm expecting a stream tonight lol since you don't have to worry about monthly melee!!

He said Monday on Discord.

[quote=Tepocate]If that's the case i'm expecting a stream tonight lol since you don't have to worry about monthly melee!![/quote]
He said Monday on Discord.
#48
1 Frags +
Mewpersrelieve burnout

Pretty much this... It's probably a good decision not only for his streaming career but his pro career as well.

[quote=Mewpers]relieve burnout[/quote]

Pretty much this... It's probably a good decision not only for his streaming career but his pro career as well.
#49
5 Frags +

I'm kinda sad not just because Seagull is leaving the active roster, but also because I think he is right on saying that the pro scene is at limbo right now. I must admit that even as a viewer, I have lost interest in tournaments recently. Sometimes I just open the front page of over.gg just to see what the score was instead of watching the whole match.

The whole western scene in my own opinion, besides two or maybe three teams, looks very inconsistent at the moment. I may be wrong, but I think it was Jason Kaplan that said on a podcast that it seems every month there's a team that rises to the top, makes people talk about them been one of the best, making threads of "holy shit, x team is the best team in NA" and then suddenly disappearing or it simply falling down and replaced by another "upcoming great team".
It happened with Renegades at the NGE qualifiers...then Kungarna getting to the finals and disbanding...then Immortals.....then Hammers(now LG evil)....now Liquid...

I know patches are a big part of this and I'm really not a big fan of having the mentality of: "UUUUUUUU new patch! I wonder what team will take the top spot now and which team will hit rock bottom now!"
Then we have subs replacing others in a team because of visa issues, ping issues, etc. There's also teams that like to play with tryouts, which I totally see their reasoning on giving them a chance to see how they perform at a tournament, but at the same time it makes tournament matches just glorified scrims for them.
The constant roster changes in a team: "Ohh no, we lost the grand finals by 1%..better change the whole team now!! :D" (exaggerating ofc) I think it was Monte that mentioned this is something that will change with the OWL because teams cannot continue changing their roster every time they start having problems.

All this together, I totally see why Seagull would prefer to wait for the OWL and focus on streaming. He already has a bigger audience than Moonmoon and dam, I can't even imagine the amount of money Moonmoon makes with 13k-15k subs plus all the donations.

I won't deny I'm sad that we won't be able to watch Seagull until the OWL, but I wish him the best and will await for his return. That said, I will still be rooting for Dummy, Numlocked, IDDQD, Harblue, Ajax and Mendo now.

I'm kinda sad not just because Seagull is leaving the active roster, but also because I think he is right on saying that the pro scene is at limbo right now. I must admit that even as a viewer, I have lost interest in tournaments recently. Sometimes I just open the front page of over.gg just to see what the score was instead of watching the whole match.

The whole western scene in my own opinion, besides two or maybe three teams, looks very inconsistent at the moment. I may be wrong, but I think it was Jason Kaplan that said on a podcast that it seems every month there's a team that rises to the top, makes people talk about them been one of the best, making threads of "holy shit, x team is the best team in NA" and then suddenly disappearing or it simply falling down and replaced by another "upcoming great team".
It happened with Renegades at the NGE qualifiers...then Kungarna getting to the finals and disbanding...then Immortals.....then Hammers(now LG evil)....now Liquid...

I know patches are a big part of this and I'm really not a big fan of having the mentality of: "UUUUUUUU new patch! I wonder what team will take the top spot now and which team will hit rock bottom now!"
Then we have subs replacing others in a team because of visa issues, ping issues, etc. There's also teams that like to play with tryouts, which I totally see their reasoning on giving them a chance to see how they perform at a tournament, but at the same time it makes tournament matches just glorified scrims for them.
The constant roster changes in a team: "Ohh no, we lost the grand finals by 1%..better change the whole team now!! :D" (exaggerating ofc) I think it was Monte that mentioned this is something that will change with the OWL because teams cannot continue changing their roster every time they start having problems.

All this together, I totally see why Seagull would prefer to wait for the OWL and focus on streaming. He already has a bigger audience than Moonmoon and dam, I can't even imagine the amount of money Moonmoon makes with 13k-15k subs plus all the donations.

I won't deny I'm sad that we won't be able to watch Seagull until the OWL, but I wish him the best and will await for his return. That said, I will still be rooting for Dummy, Numlocked, IDDQD, Harblue, Ajax and Mendo now.
#50
-30 Frags +

Sorry to disappoint all you fan boys. But Seagull is a beta star, popular sure, good player nah.

Stick to streaming Seagull, comp play requires skills, not whatever you did in the last year on NRG.

Sorry to disappoint all you fan boys. But Seagull is a beta star, popular sure, good player nah.

Stick to streaming Seagull, comp play requires skills, not whatever you did in the last year on NRG.
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