American DPS Ted “silkthread” Wang has announced his retirement from competitive Overwatch.
Silkthread last played for Los Angeles Gladiators. He said had been signed with the Chengdu Hunters for season two, but after discussion with management the organization allowed him to terminate his contract and leave the Overwatch League.
His given reason for the decision is burnout and a general lack of satisfaction in professional Overwatch competition. He also cited a cultural difference between western teams and Chinese teams. Silkthread stated that he had difficulty adjusting to the work hours, reduced privacy, general living conditions, off-days, and overall work ethic in the Chinese organizations.
It was also difficult for Silkthread to adjust to speaking in all Chinese, and while he picked it up fairly quickly, it added another hurdle for him to contend with.
After just a short amount of time spent with his new team, Silkthread felt that his withdrawal wouldn’t affect the team’s developing synergy. While he credits much of his personal growth and independence to the Overwatch League, he has no plans to further his career in esports, and will instead go back to college.
Silkthread has applied to three universities and will look to major in business. He offered that it’s possible he could return to esports in a management capacity rather than a competitor, and that he remains motivated to help esports become as recognized as traditional sports.
Currently in China, Silkthread plans on making the most out of his new vacation, which includes visiting some tourist spots and his parents’ home town. He will then return home to the United States and concentrate solely on streaming until the next semester of school.