NYXL reportedly backtracks on “marginalized gender” OWL roster after failing to sign players


Players looking to go pro in the Overwatch League have reportedly turned down offers from the New York Excelsior forcing it to rethink its plans for a marginalized gender roster.

Back in November, it was reported that the NYXL was looking to build its 2023 OWL roster with players who identify as members of marginalized genders, and despite the backlash, the team is moving forward with its decision, but with a catch.

Things aren’t proceeding very well for the team as it looks to recruit players following Blizzard’s low-viewership “Calling All Heroes” Challengers Cup tournament.

According to a new report by Aaron ‘HaloofThoughts’ Spake, New York was “struggling” with their plan ahead of the March deadline for teams to have at least five players signed and has since softened their stance.

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NYXL struggles to sign “marginalized gender” players for OWL 2023 season

Sparke claims that multiple sources have told him that a “large majority of professional players” are not interested in joining the team for the upcoming Overwatch League season.

The controversial decision has been blasted by many in the Overwatch 2 community, including players who identify as female or non-binary.

A common criticism stems from the fact that there is a severe lack of players who can compete at a pro level while still checking all of NYXL’s diversity checkboxes.

As a result of the lack of interest, Sparke has since updated fans that NYXL has “softened” its stance and the requirement that players be of a specific gender has been lifted.

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“Sources now believe that requirement has been lifted, to try and acquire players seemingly from contenders,” he said. “NYXL are also supposedly offering contracts above League minimum and offering housing in NYC.”

So far, no players have been officially signed to the team, but on January 2, the Excelsior welcomed Twitch streamer NyanSox as a content creator.

With a few months still remaining until the deadline, the NYXL will still have plenty of time to put together a roster, but it remains to be seen if any players will want to join the team given the recent controversy.

For more on OWL’s off-season signings, be sure to check out our rostermania hub with all the latest updates for all 20 squads.

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