We finally have our first official word on when Overwatch teams will be able to start signing players. According to the official Twitter account of Overwatch Boston, the signing window opened up on August 1st, something we had a good idea of already, and will be open until October 30th.
This is a fairly large window, but should provide teams enough time to sign rosters before they might get shown off at Blizzcon where Blizzard is sure to have a few additional announcements about the league.
The press release, put out by Kraft Sports Group, the owner’s of the Boston Overwatch franchise spot, mentions many of the details we already knew such as player minimum salaries and benefits as well as roster requirements. The release also mentions that any new team added to the league within the signing window will immediately be eligible to pick up players as well. This part of the release is our first hint from an official source that more teams are likely coming, and much sooner than some may have expected.
The player signing process, as reported in late June, will be done by taking a pool of the highest ranking players in the world, and distributing their information out to teams to help the teams make the best and most informed choices on which players they pursue for their teams. This process will only be done for the first season, with a more standard contract and scouting system likely taking over after 2017.
While most of this news has been expected to come over the last several weeks, the question that still remains unanswered is how exactly this signing window will affect the teams competing in the, previously announced, first season of Overwatch Contenders. If, as Blizzard has said before, even existing teams would be forced to disband their roster, at least temporarily, how quickly will the eight teams in that tournament need to reach new deals with their players in order to compete.