NEW YORK, NY - JULY 27: Malik Forte, MonteCristo and DOA host at Overwatch League Grand Finals - Day 1 at Barclays Center on July 27, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Matthew Eisman/Getty Images for Blizzard Entertainment )

Photo by Matthew Eisman/Getty Images for Blizzard Entertainment

Overwatch League caster Montecristo announced on Twitter today that he will not be returning to Overwatch League in 2020. He cited “irreconcilable creative and philosophical differences” between himself and new management following the departure of former commissioner Nate Nanzer last spring. The announcement comes as we head into the new year and 2020 contracts for OWL begin to go into effect.

Montecristo helped to launch Overwatch League as a caster back in their inaugural 2018 campaign. The departure will also mean leaving behind his co-caster Doa, whom he’s performed with for the last seven years across multiple esports. Furthermore, he announced that the OverSight podcast he does along with Thorin will be suspended immediately.

As for what’s next for Monte, he hasn’t revealed all the details. His tweet said that he’s been given a new opportunity that will allow him to continue performing as an on-camera talent, while also allowing him to build up his skills as a creative director. He said quote, “I have been granted exciting opportunities to produce esports content and broadcasts in accordance with my own vision, standards, and fifteen years of endemic industry expertise.”

Robbie’s Thoughts: This is a big loss for the Overwatch League as a whole. All of the casters, analysts and talent bring a wide range of expertise to the League but MonteCristo represented an aspect of competition that esports as a whole is still trying to grasp. Monte has a personality that cannot be duplicated, he’s not out to be anyone’s friend or tell you what you want to hear about your teams and players. He presents his opinions as they are with no filter, despite what the fans may think. One pillar of the traditional sports world that the Overwatch League has yet to truly capture and embrace is the die-hard, give no ground rivalries and Monte was the closest we had to that mindset. To call him the ‘villain’ seems too cartoonish, but the influence he brought to this league will be sorely missed and not easily replaced. It’s good to know he’s going on to purpose further career paths in the space as he is a true titan of our industry.