After a precipitous drop in the Overwatch League standings from 2018 to 2019, the Houston Outlaws fired head coach Tae-yeong “TaiRong” Kim and assistant coach Hyun-woo “HyunWoo” Kim on Friday.
The team tweeted of the duo, “We appreciate all their hard work and dedication over the past two seasons. Though our journey with them may be over, we know their futures are extremely bright.”
We appreciate all their hard work and dedication over the past two seasons.
Though our journey with them may be over, we know their futures are extremely bright. pic.twitter.com/HQyrxBeIzI
— Houston Outlaws (@Outlaws) September 20, 2019
TaiRong responded on Twitter, “It was an honor to be with Team and fans. Thank you @Outlaws”
It was an honor to be with Team and fans. Thank you @Outlaws
— Outlaws TaiRong (@TaiRongOW) September 20, 2019
TaiRong and HyunWoo were with the Outlaws from the start of the Overwatch League in 2018, leading the squad to a 22-18 record, good for seventh place, just shy of qualifying for the season-ending playoffs.
Houston’s 2019 season was a struggle, though. The Outlaws came in 12th place in Stage 1, then finished in 20th place (last) by going 0-7 in Stage 2. They made the Stage 3 playoffs by coming in seventh but were swept 3-0 by the Vancouver Titans in the first round.
A 16th-place result in Stage 4 left the Outlaws in 16th overall on the season with a 9-19 record.
The coaching shakeup is the latest major change for the Outlaws. Immortals Gaming Club (IGC), which also owns the Overwatch League’s Los Angeles Valiant, purchased Infinite Esports, the umbrella company of the Outlaws and OpTic Gaming, in June.
Because OWL rules prohibit companies from owning multiple teams, multiple media reports indicated that IGC is expected to sell the Outlaws.
–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)