WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE MEMORY AT USC? Josh Dunst/Daily Trojan Beating UCLA at home was just magical, especially doing it on senior night for some of those guys [who are] some of my best friends today. I’m not really sure about that yet. I have a couple options — I could pursue volleyball overseas. But I’m also ready to get a job, start a life, and move on. WHAT’S NEXT FOR YOU? It was tough in the beginning. Of course, there’s a language barrier, understanding what your coaches want, how you’re going to make new friends. The culture’s totally different. The environment is different. It was always a challenge to adapt. It took me a while to understand more about the people. WHAT’S ONE THING ABOUT VOLLEYBALL THAT MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW? Just keep your head high. Sometimes it’s going to be a roller coaster ride. There’s going to be ups and downs. You’ve just got to keep your head up, just keep working hard. If you work hard, it’s going to pay off in the end. WHAT ABOUT TRANSFERRING FROM COMMUNITY COLLEGE? WAS THAT A CHALLENGE? DO YOU HAVE ANY REGRETS FROM THE PAST FOUR YEARS? I made a lot of friends playing volleyball. It definitely helped that all my teammates knew English, helped me develop my language as well on the court. My favorite memory so far was my junior year. We had a game against UCLA — it was senior night last year. There was a lot of people, a lot of pressure and we came up with a win that night. I’m going to remember that game forever. No regrets at all. When you don’t win a championship, you’re always like, “I wish I would’ve done that.” We’re working hard this year to reach that goal. In the U.S., it’s not really a popular sport. One of our coaches, Greg Walker, talks about entertaining people: ‘What are you going to do for people to come watch you?’ It has to be exciting. Sometimes, I feel like some people lack excitement [for the sport]. It’s something that we always work on, to put on a show for everyone to come to watch. WAS IT DIFFICULT TO ADJUST TO LIFE IN AMERICA? Coming from Orange Coast College in Orange County, of course the level of volleyball was way higher playing Division I here at USC. It’s tough to adjust to the speed of the game. After a lot of hard work and dedication, you adapt to it easily. DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR FRESHMEN ATHLETES? Volleyball is played all around the world, but the way they play it in the U.S. is totally different from the way they play it in Brazil. [In Brazil], it’s a way more emotional game. You play with your heart. You play for the fans. In the U.S., it’s more of a statistical game. In my opinion, that’s why people don’t really watch it here — the excitement that some of the players don’t have.
Blizzard has revealed that it will be looking to expand the Overwatch League later this year with the second season.A representative from Blizzard confirmed the news to PC Gamer, saying: “We expect to begin selling additional expansion teams in the Overwatch League later this year. We have no further details to share at this time”. The quarterly earnings call also revealed that it expects the price of expansion teams to increase on the reported $20 million for initial franchises, and also that it expects the Overwatch League to turn a profit in its first full year of operation. The other notable points from the call are that Blizzard is set to focus on expanding the audience and improving the viewer experience. The current season will finish in June and one would assume a second season will get underway and finish before the end of the year.Currently there’s nine of twelve franchises over in the United States, with only three outside of the US. London Spitfire, Seoul Dynasty and Shanghai Dragons are the sole representatives from outside of North America so one would assume Blizzard will be targeting further global expansion.Currently the League is approaching the end of the first stage of the first season – with New York Excelsior, London Spitfire, Los Angeles Valiant and Houston Outlaws all looking strong heading into the final weekend. The top three will make it to the play-off matches, with third then facing off against second before the winner takes on the top of the table team for the ultimate prize of stage one winners. After Spitfire’s defeat to Outlaws late last night, it’s all to play for and should make for an intriguing last few days.Esports Insider says: Interesting that the price may increase past a whopping $20 million. It’s good to see the initiative that many doubted looking to make a profit in the first year of operation, too. We look forward to seeing where the new franchises will be set up. A bit of European competition could be tasty. read more