Dallas Fuel drop first preseason match with revamped roster as Shanghai rolls 3-0
The Dallas Fuel 2021 debut was disappointing for those looking to open the franchise with a preseason win. The Shanghai Dragons, a top 3 finisher from the 2020 Overwatch League season, made sure of it in their 3-0 win over the Fuel in the NeXT tournament early Saturday morning.
Dallas has a quick turnaround in this tournament, which is matched against the Guangzhou Charge at 4 a.m. on Sunday morning.
The Fuel, which started in Korea on a roster that looks almost entirely independent of its 2020 self, was competitive on two of the maps, but Shanghai looked like a team headed for another OWL Grand Final.
But this was a preseason match, and a fuel win over the Dragons would have been a formidable early feat. That didn’t stop Fuel’s new head coach, Yun “RUSH” Hee-won, from having higher expectations.
“It was great (training my first game with Dallas) but to be honest our first game was very disappointing,” RUSH told Dallas Morning News via interpreter. “It didn’t meet my expectations at all. I myself have a lot to prove and be able to prove that we can be better so that on our journey we can show improvements that we make along the way. “
The Fuel did not have a successful season in its three years as an OWL organization under Envy Gaming. That doesn’t reflect this current roster representation, but this is also a group that has sparked hope in the Fuel fan base as a team that could seriously contend for the top spot.
Shanghai as the first opponent was a tough lot, but a useful measuring stick. The Dragons had the best record in the league last season and reached the last four of the OWL with 27: 2.
The fuel, on the other hand, blew up its squad in the off-season and only kept the damage player. Kim “DoHa” Dongha and Assistant Trainer Kim “Yong” Yong-Jin
The players Kim “Sp9rk1e” Yeong-han, Jung “Xzi” K-iyo, Choi “Hanbin” Han-been and Kwon “Fielder” Jun came from Paris, together with RUSH and assistant trainer Go “Aid ‘Jae-yoon. Supporters Lee “Jecse” Seung-Soo and Kim “Rapel” Jung-keun came from the Houston Outlaws while the main tank of fuel, Lee “Fearless” Eui-Seok, competed against his 2020 team on Saturday morning.
Granted, most of this group played together on Element Mystic in Contenders, but they only started practicing as Fuel members in January.
What did this mean for RUSH in preparing the fuel for the preseason? Learn the basics.
“I think we are missing basic things to do,” said RUSH. “We have given a lot of feedback emphasizing the basics, but there are things that have been in conflict recently.”
One example that RUSH gave was where the fuel fought the dragons on every map. Dallas was rolled from Shanghai to Volskaya Industries, the second card. Most of the fighting was over quickly and the fuel was out of position.
As Dallas has no practice available tomorrow and only has the ability to video review, positioning will be a focus that RUSH gives to fuel.
“One of the most important things is to be able to fight in the right place. Being in the right position is one of the basic things we need to know and I’ll probably check that out, “said RUSH. “We can fix that in 24 hours.”
Dallas will of course check out Guangzhou, but RUSH wants the Fuel players to check out themselves too. Improvements, no matter how early in the season, are a must for a team to achieve a top position in a competitive league.
For more information on fuel, see the Dallas Morning News here.