|Founded||August 2, 2018|
|Team history||Atlanta Reign|
2018 – present
|Based in||Atlanta, United States|
|Owner||Atlanta Esports Ventures|
|Head coach||Brad "Sephy" Rajani|
|General manager||Paul Hamilton|
|Main sponsor||Cox Communications|
Founded in 2018, Atlanta Reign began play as one of eight OWL expansion teams in 2019 and became the first esports team to officially represent the city of Atlanta. The team will host homestands at the Coca-Cola Roxy in the Battery Atlanta at Suntrust Park and at another, undetermined location. The team is owned by Atlanta Esports Ventures, a joint venture between Cox Enterprises and Province, Inc., who also own ATL Academy, an academy team for the Reign that compete in Overwatch Contenders.
The Reign are coached by Brad "Sephy" Rajani and qualified for the season playoffs in their inaugural season, but they were eliminated in the lower bracket second round of the double-elimination tournament.
On August 2, 2018 it was announced that Atlanta Esports Ventures, a partnership between Cox Enterprises and Province, Inc, purchased one of Activision Blizzard's expansion slots in the Overwatch League at an estimated $30 million to $60 million. Activision Blizzard's had expecting to sell Atlanta one of the expansion slots, as President and CEO of Activision Blizzard Esports Leagues Pete Vlastlica noted, "We always had our eye on [Atlanta], from the beginning. It [was] just a matter of when." With the purchase, the franchise became the first esports team to officially represent the city of Atlanta.
On September 9, 2018, Atlanta announced the hiring former San Francisco Shock head coach Brad "Sephy" Rajani as their head coach. On October 28, 2018, the Reign announced their full roster, consisting of eight players. It did not include any player that had previously competed in the Overwatch League; instead, the team signed players from various Overwatch Contenders scenes.
The Reign's first ever regular season OWL match resulted in a 4–0 victory against Florida Mayhem on February 15. Atlanta finished Stage 1 with a 4–3 record and secured a spot in the Stage 1 playoffs, but a 1–3 loss in the quarterfinals by the Philadelphia Fusion ended their playoff run. Prior to Stage 2, multiple roster changes took place, including the retirement of Daniel "dafran" Francesca. The Reign struggled throughout Stages 2 and 3, posting a combined 5–9 record and no stage playoff appearances. The team hit their stride in Stage 4, when the league implemented a 2-2-2 role lock. A 4–0 victory over the Boston Uprising on August 25 gave the Reign a perfect 7–0 record in Stage 4, a 16–12 record for the season, and the sixth seed in the season playoffs.
Atlanta's first playoff match resulted with a 4–3 victory over the San Francisco Shock on September 6. However, the team fell 2–4 to the New York Excelsior the following match, sending them to the lower bracket. A 0–4 loss to the Hangzhou Spark in the following match ended the Reign's playoff run.
On October 23, 2018, Atlanta Esports Ventures announced that the team Atlanta-based team would be called the Atlanta Reign. "We are excited to finally unveil the Atlanta Reign,” said President and Chief Executive Officer of Atlanta Esports Ventures Paul Hamilton, "We said from the beginning that we are building to compete. We chose a name that reflects that intention. We want to engage directly with Atlanta’s passionate esports community and the city as a whole."
The logo depicts a red phoenix inside a crest, with the rising phoenix representing Atlanta's city seal and new beginnings, as well as the team's name, representing "work ethic, reinvention, and excellence," especially that of the city of Atlanta. The official colors of the team are red, light gray, and charcoal gray.
Atlanta Reign roster
|Atlanta Reign head coaches|
|Sephy||Brad Rajani||October 17, 2018||–||1 year, 29 days|||
Awards and records
|Season||P||W||L||W%||MW||ML||MT||MD||Pos. (league)||Pos. (conf.)||Playoffs||Earnings|
|2019||28||16||12||.571||69||50||1||+19||6th||2nd||Lower Round 2||$325,000|
All-Star Game selections
- Dogman (Dusttin Bowerman) – 2019
On November 23, 2018, the Atlanta Reign announced that unsponsored Overwatch Contenders team Last Night's Leftovers would be competing as Atlanta's academy team. The team, rebranded as ATL Academy, began play as an affiliate team in the North America region of Contenders in Season 3 of 2018.
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- Wolf, Jacob (July 28, 2018). "Overwatch League sells Atlanta spot to group funded by Cox". ESPN. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
- Reisigl, Joe (November 15, 2018). "Atlanta bought an Overwatch eSports team. Here's why you should care". Atlanta Magazine. Retrieved October 11, 2019.
- Radcliffe, Noam (September 10, 2018). "Atlanta Overwatch League Franchise Announces Coaches, Staff". DBLTAP. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
- Carpenter, Nicole. "Controversial streamer Dafran signed to Atlanta Reign Overwatch League roster". Dot Esports. Retrieved March 13, 2019.
- August, Charlotte (February 16, 2019). "Overwatch Esports: Overwatch League Day 2 Recap". ESTNN. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
- Czar, Michael (March 23, 2019). "Overwatch League Stage 1 Playoff Recap: Fusion and Shock dominate". Daily Esports. Retrieved June 11, 2019.
- "Dafran retires from Overwatch, joins Reign stream team". ESPN. Reuters. March 28, 2019. Retrieved March 29, 2019.
- "Reign cap perfect Stage 4, clinch top-six playoff spot". ESPN. Reuters. August 25, 2019. Retrieved August 26, 2019.
- Bennet, Connor (October 5, 2019). "Overwatch: Atlanta Reign win huge upset after SF Shock 'C9' at OWL Playoffs". Dexerto. Retrieved September 20, 2019.
- "Vancouver, New York reach OWL winners final". ESPN. Reuters. September 8, 2019. Retrieved October 6, 2019.
- Gemignani, Mike (September 13, 2019). "Overwatch League Playoff: Spark and Shock Advance". Hotspawn. Retrieved October 4, 2019.
- Mandel, Eric (October 23, 2018). "Cox Enterprises cites 'reinvention' in branding for Atlanta's new Overwatch League franchise". Atlanta Business Chronicle. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
- Atlanta Esports Ventures (October 23, 2018). "Introducing the Atlanta Reign: Identity Unveiled for New Esports Franchise" (PDF). Retrieved March 16, 2019.
- Patry, Justin (April 22, 2019). "Atlanta Reign Homestand Weekend tickets now available". WSB-TV. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
- Hayward, Andrew (September 25, 2019). "Atlanta Reign on 2019 OWL Homestand, Sponsorship Benefits of Having Team Home in 2020". The Esports Observer. Retrieved October 8, 2019.
- "Atlanta Esports Ventures Welcomes Coaches for Overwatch League Team". Atlanta Esports Ventures. September 10, 2018. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
- Rodriguez, Veronika (November 23, 2018). "Atlanta Reign Announces Overwatch League Academy Team". DBLTAP. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
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