Vancouver Titan's Coach on the Team's Greatest Strength

Matt Buchholtz,

April 8, 2019 11:40 AM

Harsha Bandi spoke with Twin Galaxies about why Vancouver is unstoppable, and why we've seen Bumper on Pharah in recent matches.

After a commanding performance against the Ghenzou Charge, the Vancouver Titans continued their undefeated streak. While they may be Number Two in the rankings (New York Excelsior is currently 9-0, while Vancouver rests at 8-0), they’ve earned themselves a target as the team to beat, especially after winning the Stage One Championships.

Vancouver’s three tank, three support composition is #SquadGoals, a key part of the team’s success pivots around main tank Sangbeom “Bumper” Park, whose aggressively quixotic plays often see him charging straight into the fray in the search for glory. Backed by such players as Min-soo “SeoMinSoo” Seo and Juseok “Twilight” Lee, Bumper is empowered to swing away, cleaving through enemy comps on his primary hero, Reinhardt. This playstyle allows for Vancouver not only to complete an impressive number of maps, but to do it quickly.

But how does Vancouver make Titans among GOATS? To find out more, we sat down with their coach, Harsha Bandi, to speak on the team’s success, and to learn what makes Vancouver so incredibly dominant in the Overwatch League.

Twin Galaxies: What makes Vancouver so good in the 3/3 meta?

Harsha Bandi: The team has been together for so long, the synergy is just significantly better than any other team that’s in the [Overwatch] League... Like, Bumper, Stitch, Haksal have been together for longer than pretty much anybody in the League. I think that being a team, and being coordinated, and being able to communicate things—sometimes without even needing to say it—I think that’s really important in this meta, especially when we move to more and more teamwork instead of individual skill. This team just has the ability to play 3/3 and that solid play really well.

(Photo Credit: Blizzard Entertainment)
(Photo Credit: Blizzard Entertainment)

TG: And what would you say to people who think that’s all Vancouver can do?

HB: Those people probably haven’t watched Runaway play beforehand. Runaway hasn’t always been a top two team, but it’s always been able to get back to the top two of the world like APEX Season 2 and APEX Season 4. Those were more dive metas. We have players like Bumper who’ve switched roles; went from Lucio to D.Va to now he plays main tank. Haksal has even played Lucio in competitive play, has played Winston in matches too. We have some of the most versatile players in the league. I would just say people who think we only play GOATS or are a GOATS one-trick are being very short-sighted.

TG: Speaking of playing other characters; Bumper playing Hanzo, Bumper playing Pharah… Were those your calls?

HB: (Laughing) Those are his calls, We do have some strategies around Bumper playing DPS for sure; he’s very flexible. Jjanu’s a very good Wrecking Ball, so when we have those Wrecking Ball three DPS or four DPS comps it works out really well where we can just slot [Bumper] off to the Hanzo, or the Pharah, or the Widow or Tracer or whatever he needs to play, and he actually does play [DPS] a good bit in ranked and has played it before in professional play. We’re not too worried about it.

TG: Right now you’re undefeated, and Runaway is still on their streak. What sort of pressure do you feel from that? Do you feel other teams coming for you?

HB: Honestly, it’s not something we really worry about—and maybe the players will disagree—but it’s not really in the back of my mind. I think that we’re just always going to be in a good position to be one of the best teams or the best team in Overwatch League. We just come into every game making sure we did our best and prepared our best and practiced our best, and the pressure’s not really something we think about.

(Photo Credit: Robert Paul, Blizzard Entertainment)
(Photo Credit: Robert Paul, Blizzard Entertainment)

Seeing a sly grin on Bumper’s face-cam after a seemingly impossible pin, or watching the team excitedly give high-fives after a match, it’s hard to think that the pressure is getting to the Titans, but all streaks must come to an end. This week, the Titans face the Seoul Dynasty, with star tank player Chan-hyung "Fissure" Baek. The last time that Vancouver played Seoul it went in Vancouver’s favor, but with the addition of the character Baptiste being broken down by pros around the League, it could be anyone’s game.

Unfortunately, we don’t see Vancouver take New York Excelsior, the only other undefeated team in the Overwatch League, during regular season play. This scheduling was most likely intentional, keeping fans hyped for the potential to see the two behemoths clash in the Stage Playoffs.

Who do you think could be the first to take down the Titans? Let us know in the comments below!

(Feature Photo Credit: Robert Paul, Blizzard Entertainment)



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