Welcome to the final Stage. The inaugural season of the Overwatch League is coming to a climax, but before we get to the playoffs, there’s one more round of qualifying to do.
Week one started out with San Francisco taking a loss to the LA Gladiators 3-1. The Shock have been improving, but the Gladiators are on fire and swept them in the first three games. The Shock did take the fourth round win, which will give them a boost when playoffs do finally come around. A close game between the LA Valiant and the Seoul Dynasty followed, with the Valiant pulling ahead in map five. Seoul struggled last Stage, so it was good to see them back on their feet and holding their own against last Stage’s #3. Shanghai then took on Dallas, whom they were poised to beat, but after a first-round win, the Fuel were able to pull a reverse sweep on the Dragons. Shanghai remains without a win all season.
Thursday started off with a somewhat surprising game between the Philadelphia Fusion and the Boston Uprising, with the Fusion taking home the win, 3-1. Philadelphia is a great team, but the Uprising went undefeated last Stage, so to see them lose right out of the gates was jarring. The Fusion was looking cleaner than ever, with Neptuno on Mercy taking Player of the Match for some ridiculous saves throughout the game. Next up was the New York Excelsior and the Florida Mayhem, where the drew on Hanamura during round two, but with New York taking the three other rounds. Then, in the second surprising game of the week, the Houston Outlaws took down the London Spitfire 4-0. The Spitfire looked sloppy, while Linkzr specifically was showing his best self on the Outlaws’ side.
Friday night began with the LA Gladiators sweeping the Dallas Fuel 4-0. Then, the Boston Uprising took another 3-1 loss to the Houston Outlaws, who really found a rhythm this week. Seoul then took a loss to the Shock, 3-1.
Finally, on Saturday, the Philadelphia Fusion swept the Florida Mayhem 4-0, followed by a 3-1 victory from the LA Valiant over the Shanghai Dragons, and another 3-1 victory from the New York Excelsior over the London Spitfire.
While the first week of Stage 4 seems a bit slow or uneventful, it does put the standings in a weird place. Check them out:
- Houston Outlaws
- LA Gladiators
- Philadelphia Fusion
- New York Excelsior
- LA Valiant
- San Francisco Shock
- Dallas Fuel
- Seoul Dynasty
- Boston Uprising
- Shanghai Dragons
- London Spitfire
- Florida Mayhem
It’s only the first week, and some teams may have played more difficult opponents while others had an easier win, but the fact that Boston took two losses while the Outlaws have come out of the woodworks and taken the top spot is surprising and could foreshadow what’s to come in this last Stage. But we’ll just have to wait and see.