My guess is that VP9 probably isn't quite as good as H.265, but it is definitely in the ballpark.
You'd be wrong about that actually. Monty's given it his usual expert and honest analysis, see one of his blog posts from late last year. Caveat: If you compare VP9 today vs. some tuned H.265 of the future the roles may reverse. Or not. Who knows that's just pure speculation and it's not like VP9 won't tune up either.
But VP9 is not too late for the war with H.265
In fact VP9 spec was finalized quarters before H.265, and Google has the ear and other anatomical bits of all the hardware manufactures in the Android world, so VP9 hardware support from the start is in very good shape.
And what is never mentioned in the press releases is that VP9 and H.265 make their impressive bandwidth (or filesize) improvements at the cost of double the CPU needs. You do not want to be running these codecs without hardware support.
The exciting stuff is Daala.