XL2 Academy, the academy team of the New York Excelsior, has announced their roster on Twitter and the Contenders teams page. The roster for the team is identical to the one revealed in Rod Breslau's ESPN article, save Mangachu will be playing in the DPS role previously thought to be occupied by Fl0w3R.
While Fl0w3R is too young to compete for the Excelsior this season of the Overwatch League, he is believed to be signed by the team based on a statement made by team manager BEARHANDS on the High Noon Podcast, in which he stated Fl0w3R was part of the "larger [New York Excelsior] organization." It is currently unknown why Fl0w3R was excluded from the team's Contenders roster, but it may involve eligibility issues if he is indeed a member of the New York Excelsior.
Mangachu joins XL2 Academy after playing the previous season of Contenders with Renegades, where the team struggled to win any of their seven round robin matches. Mangachu then went on to play in the World Cup with Team Canada; he saw more success than he did on Renegades, finishing second in the competition next to tournament favorites and eventual champions Team South Korea in the grand finals.
With Midnight firmly occupying the flex role, Mangachu will be free from the shackles of D.Va that plagued him on Renegades and Team Canada, and will be on the DPS role alongside Nenne. Mangachu will be looking to use this opportunity to prove his often criticized hero pool is not as shallow as many say.
The rest of the roster is the same as the one reported by ESPN, with many of the players heading to Contenders after brief absenses. Nenne of LuxuryWatch Red fame comes to the West for the first time, moving over after the disbandment of Lunatic-Hai last year. Cloneman16 makes his Contenders debut, who was last seen playing for the shortly-lived Kelvin and the Chipmunks in the qualifiers for Contenders Season Zero. Rounding out the lineup is flex player Midnight from Rise Nation (and his brief trial on Selfless Gaming in the summer of 2017), and support players Goliath and Adam from Evil Geniuses and Cloud9 respectively.
XL2 plays its first match of Contenders Season 1 2018 Sunday, March 11 at 9 p.m. against the Uprising's academy team Toronto Esports.
The XL2 Academy is: