The inaugural season of the Overwatch League is quickly approaching its endgame, so naturally, sights are being set on the upcoming second season. With this in mind, Blizzard has released the rules behind how rosters will be constructed moving forward.
On August 1st, the signing window will be opened for teams to negotiate extensions with players already signed to them, or for their respective Overwatch Contenders players to be signed. This is also the date on which player trades can be made from.
Official agreements from the inaugural season end on September 9th, meaning any players that aren’t under a contract at this point will become free agents. The exclusive window for expansion teams to sign free agents start from this date also, ending October 7th.
October 8th is the day in which the signing window for free agents opens for all teams, so if players are still yet to be selected by expansion teams then they become available for the teams that competed in the first season.
By December 1st, each team must have at least eight players signed under contract. Despite this, teams are still able to sign or trade players throughout the upcoming season until a final deadline which has not yet been specified. Players who turn 18 years of age before this deadline are eligible to be signed and compete in the League, too.
Starting with this next season, the terms of player’s agreements “will no longer be fixed at one year with an additional one-year option.” Instead, players can negotiate contracts with teams that last up to three years.
Another interesting development is the option of having “two-way players”. This means it’s possible that a player can compete for both an Overwatch League team and an Overwatch Contenders team. There are more details surrounding the stipulations of such a move here.
Esports Insider says: The rules and dates surrounding renewing contracts and trading players all seem relatively fair, but it’s the two-way player rule and the three-year contract implementation that grab our attention the most. It’s also nice to see that expansion teams have an exclusive window to sign players.