TORONTO — The Toronto Defiant esports team has parted ways with head coach Beoumjun (Bishop) Lee.
In Stage 4 of the 2019 season, the Defiant (1-3) currently stand tied for 15th in the 20-team Overwatch League. The Toronto team tied for 19th in Stage 3 (0-7) and was 15th in Stage 2 (2-5) after finishing tied for third in Stage 1 (5-2).
The first-year Defiant said assistant coaches Matthew (Optidox) Sims and Sungbo (Mobydik) Shim and analyst Dennis (Barroi) Matz will take over coaching responsibilities for the rest of the season.
The esports team declined comment on the reasons behind the coaching change.
"We informed our fans of the Toronto Defiant coaching change (Wednesday) and we will not be making any further comments on this specific matter," it said in a statement. "We want to thank Bishop for all his contributions this past season, and all of us in the organization wish him success in the future."
The Vancouver Titans, the league's other Canadian team, are currently tied for seventh in Stage 4 with a 2-1 record.
London won the inaugural league championship — and US$1 million — in July 2018, defeating Philadelphia 3-0 at a soldout Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Bishop, known for his ability to find talent, helped put the London team together and served as coach before parting ways with the squad before its championship run.
"It pains me to say that I will be parting ways with the Toronto Defiant- an amazing team that has been my home and family for a year," Bishop said on social media. "I thank the team for giving me the opportunity to coach again, especially after being out of the pro scene due to family reasons.
"Despite the ups and downs this season, I firmly believe that the Toronto Defiant have the potential to finish Stage 4 strong and become a top team in Season 3 under the outstanding leadership of (owner) OverActive Media.
"As for me, I think I'll take a little break and pursue alternate career opportunities. Embracing who I am and doing what I enjoy — interacting with the gaming community."
"Overwatch'' is a team-based, first-person shooter video game from Blizzard Entertainment that has spawned a worldwide esports league.