Welcome to the OWL S2W1D1 Recap! Stage 2 of the Overwatch League kicked off last night, and some of the results were not quite what analysts and viewers were expecting. From two clean sweeps to an impressive comeback, here is what happened during the latest Overwatch League matches.
Philadelphia Fusion versus New York Excelsior
This match was one for fans to be excited for. Both teams went head to head during last season’s Playoffs Semi Finals, and whilst most people expected the Excelsior to beat the Fusion during that semi-final, the Fusion managed to outplay them and booked their tickets to the Barclays Centre. Now, the teams have had a rematch, and the tables have flipped. Whilst the Fusion tried their best, the Excelsior weren’t going to let them get away with anything, and they took the win with a final match score of 4-0.
The New York Excelsior did look dominant, but it was also the fact that the Fusion looked rather lost during the game. Supports for Philadelphia, Neptuno and Elk, looked good, but main tank Sado looked very lost as he dove into the back lines of NYXL with no way to survive. Whilst the 3-3 meta is still viable, the meta itself should favour aggressive tanks like Sado and their benched main tank, Fragi. However, Sado’s execution of these moves seems to be lacking unlike Fragi.
If the Fusion want to improve, they should either put Fragi in or try and resolve the issue with Sado diving too far in. On the other hand, the Excelsior looked dominant, only allowing Philadelphia to take four points du1ring the entire match, taking both points during Lijiang Tower on the first map. The match did see the debut of the newest Overwatch hero, Baptiste, as played by EQO, but it didn’t last very long, as he switched near the end of the game.
Boston Uprising versus Atlanta Reign
Both of these teams had shakeups during the stage break, with Boston trading their flex tank, NotE, for Dallas Fuel’s flex player, rCk. Atlanta said farewell to Dafran and picked up DPS player Babybay from the San Francisco Shock. Both teams battled it out and went the distance of a fifth map, but the Uprising completed the reverse sweep over the Reign and took the victory. The final match score was 3-2 in favour of the Uprising.
Both teams had strong showings across the board, with some treats for the fans coming from either side. Main tank for the Uprising, Fusions, managed to smack a D.va bomb out of the way as Winston with his primal rage on Temple of Anubis, and flex player rCk nudged his Self-Destruct just a few centimetres forward to catch two players hiding beside the cart. And despite the loss, main tank Pokpo managed to waste Fusions’ Earthshatter on Eichenwalde as he managed to throw him off the map as Winston using Primal Rage whilst Fusions was mid-shatter. Not only were there some flashy plays, both teams switched it up from the usual 3-3 ‘GOATS’ composition, a nice change after the constant showings of it during Stage 1.
Los Angeles Gladiators versus Shanghai Dragons
Both of these teams were looking to prove themselves in this matchup, with both teams having slightly shaky Stage 1 records. Both teams were also missing key elements, with Gamsu having just joined the Shanghai Dragons and DPS player for the Gladiators, Decay, only just recently turning 18 and being eligible to play. With both teams looking for the win, they both brought their best, but it was the Gladiators who took the win, with a final score of 3-1 in favour of the team from Los Angeles.
The Shanghai Dragons did lose the game, but they had a very strong game on Busan, with the team taking the map win 2-0 and not letting the Gladiators take any round on the map. DPS player Diem also had a good round as Widowmaker, as he was constantly shutting down the Gladiators’ own Widowmaker, DPS star Surefour, who is well known for his Widowmaker from last season.
To see Diem take down Surefour with ease was quite the shock, but was nice to see a new face to the league proving himself. Not only this, the Dragons managed to place a Junkrat trap in just the right place to catch Decay as Genji off-guard during Temple of Anubis. It stopped him dead in his tracks with his Dragonblade active, and Gamsu then finished him off. However, it was the Gladiators who took the win, and rather convincingly. They capitalised on the mistakes of the Dragons and punished them for it, as well as working well together with effective coordination and good communication.
Guangzhou Charge versus Paris Eternal
The final match of the night was between two somewhat struggling teams, as the Paris Eternal faced off against the Guangzhou Charge to close out the night. A majority of the analysts thought that Guangzhou would take the win over Paris, but they were mistaken. The Paris Eternal came to play, and they took the win convincingly with a clean sweep. The final match score was 4-0 in favour of Paris.
Whilst Paris came to play, the Charge looked lost. They managed to pick up a total of four points overall, only picking up two points on Eichenwalde and two points on Junkertown. Whilst they did show some signs of life throughout the match, it wasn’t enough to take any map wins from the Eternal. Speaking of the Eternal, they had the time of their lives this match, playing compositions that suited their strengths, and it paid off. Especially for fan favourite, DPS player Shadowburn.
Whilst playing as Pharah on their Eichenwalde attack, Shadowburn peppered the Charge with rockets, and used four shots to take down four of the enemy team by himself to further his team’s payload progress. As well as the flash Shadowburn play, main tank LhCloudy made his debut on the Overwatch League stage for the Eternal, and he proved himself to be a very capable main tank on the Wrecking Ball, Winston and Reinhardt throughout the game.
FRIDAY 5th APRIL
8 PM EST – London Spitfire vs Floriday Mayhem
9:45 PM EST – Washington Justice vs Toronto Defiant
11:30 PM EST – Los Angeles Valiant vs San Francisco Shock
Saturday 6th April 1:15 AM EST – Los Angeles Gladiators vs Seoul Dynasty
SATURDAY 6th APRIL
4 PM EST – Florida Mayhem vs Philadelphia Fusion
5:45 PM EST – Toronto Defiant vs Boston Uprising
7:30 PM EST – New York Excelsior vs Shanghai Dragons
9:15 PM EST – Chengdu Hunters vs Paris Eternal
SUNDAY 7TH APRIL
4 PM EST – San Francisco Shock vs Guangzhou Charge
5:45 PM EST – Atlanta Reign vs London Spitfire
7:30 PM EST – Vancouver Titans vs Hangzhou Spark
9:15 PM EST – Washington Justice vs Chengdu Hunters
Check out our Power Rankings for Stage 1 Week 1 here!
Images via the Overwatch League, Atlanta Reign & Guangzhou Charge