Overwatch’s Jeff Kaplan reveals NHL tradition he wants in OWL

Michael Gwilliam

Overwatch game director Jeff Kaplan believes that the Overwatch League can borrow a ritual from the National Hockey League to further honor the legacy of champions.

On Sunday, September 29 the Overwatch League will decide its season 2 champion when the San Francisco Shock battle the Vancouver Titans in the Grand Final. 

Kaplan is known to be a massive hockey fan and told Dexerto at the Overwatch League Grand Finals media day that he and his brother attended game 6 of the 2012 Stanley Cup finals where the LA Kings defeated the New Jersey Devils to win their first championship. 

Every championship-winning team and the players on the roster get their names engraved on the cup – something Kaplan wants to see implemented in the Overwatch League.

Kaplan mentioned specifically that he loves this ritual in the NHL and would like to see it introduced in the OWL too. “I think having players’ names engraved on the trophy in future seasons would be very cool,” Kaplan said.

While there are no plans so far to begin engraving players’ tags or real names, it would help strengthen the prestige of the trophy – something no other esport has yet to really attempt.

The Stanley Cup engraves all players names on the trophy.

The Stanley Cup was first awarded in 1893 to the Montreal Hockey Club. Since then, the cup has been awarded 103 times with 20 current NHL teams being champions at one point.

If the Overwatch League does begin engraving names, it’s unknown if previous champions would be added retroactively or if the trophy will undergo a redesign to better suit the engraving ritual. 

Spitfire won the first Overwatch League finals.

What do OWL Champions win? 

The winning team is not only awarded the Overwatch League trophy, they also win $1.1 million and a special exclusive skin honoring their team. 

The 2018 champion London Spitfire had a custom Flying Ace Winston skin, designed after the World War 2 pilots. 

About The Author

Michael Gwilliam is a senior writer at Dexerto based in Ontario, Canada. He specializes in Overwatch, Smash, influencers, and Twitch culture. Gwilliam has written for sites across Canada including the Toronto Sun. You can contact him at michael.gwilliam@dexerto.com or on Twitter @TheGwilliam

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