Overwatch

Top 20 highest earning Overwatch pros ahead of OWL 2020 Finals

by Alan Bernal

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As Overwatch approaches five years of being an esport, there's plenty of players who have made their money in the hit Blizzard FPS. However, who reigns supreme as the highest earner of all time?

While top-tier Overwatch pro play has existed since early 2016 with APEX, it didn't really hit the fore-front of everyone's minds until the Overwatch League in 2018. With big franchises fronting big money to play in the league, no matter what esport you followed, you took notice.

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Now three seasons in, Overwatch fans are slowly seeing the fruits of the league. Players are earning big salaries, but there's still hefty amounts of prize money on the line. If you win the title, like San Francisco Shock did in 2019, that's over $1 million right there for the team.

Shock player holding OWL 2019 trophy
Overwatch League
The Shock took home OWL 2019, and over $1 million as a team.

The OWL was shaken up a little bit in 2020 though. With the move to a homestand format, and then eventually monthly online cups, the prize money has been a bit more eventually distributed. If you perform well throughout the year, you'll make bank.

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Nevertheless, the top 20 is dominated by OWL champions. Both London Spitfire and San Francisco Shock players make up the majority of the top earners.

Hong 'Gesture' Jae-hee and Park 'Profit' Joon-yeong, team mates on the Spitfire, are tied in first with over $222,000. Before joining the Spitfire, they were both on GC Busan together, where they won APEX Season 4 and APAC Premier 2017.

These pre-OWL achievements are ultimately the big difference between them and the rest of the pack. The first San Francisco Shock player to appear on the list is Kim 'Rascal' Dong-jun in eighth, with $181,000. He was on the original Spitfire roster, but departed before their championship triumph. He managed to taste that success with the Shock in 20190 tough.

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The first Western player to appear isn't sinatraa, but rather his former Swedish teammate Nevix. Now with the Toronto Defiant, Nevix managed to pocket most of his $180,000 winnings by taking home last year's title.

Profit celebrating OWL 2018 win with London Spitfire
Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment
Profit's 2018 OWL win helped him tie as the #1 Overwatch earner.

Hooreg in 17th is the highest earner who hasn't won an OWL title. He was on the Vancouver Titans in 2019, finishing as runner-up, while on 2018 he was riding the bench for the Spitfire. His triumphs with GC Busan before the OWL days, alongside Profit and Gesture, make up a lot of his prize purse.

As the 2020 season progresses, players will start to take over each other depending on their monthly performances. With $500,000 on the line every month in the Overwatch League, a string of wins from certain teams will see their players rise to the top.

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This list only includes prize money that players have won while competing in Overwatch, and does not include any earnings from other titles, or their salary from their respective organizations.

The full top 20 list, according to esportsearnings.com, can be found below. This doesn't include all of the monthly cups from OWL's third season, but this will be added at the end of the year once playoffs wrap up.

Top 20 highest earning Overwatch pros as of August 11, 2020

Position Name Nationality Earnings
1st Gesture South Korea $222,730.97
2nd Profit South Korea $222,730.97
3rd birdring South Korea $200,453.84
4th Bdosin South Korea $197,689.65
5th Closer South Korea $197,480.74
6th Fury South Korea $190,582.25
7th NUS South Korea $188,479.09
8th Rascal South Korea $181,108.68
9th Nevix Sweden $180.755.36
10th Striker South Korea $177,424.24
11th smurf South Korea $172,184.16
12th ChoiHyoBin South Korea $169,657.20
13th Moth United States $164,548.25
14th sinatraa United States $164,363.81
15th super United States $162,948.02
16th Viol2t South Korea $158,901.19
17th Hooreg South Korea $157,907.63
18th Architect South Korea $157,289.90
19th Saebyeolbe South Korea $153,658.41
20th Mek0 South Korea $149,547.30

Check out our other top 20 highest earning pros list in various esports: