The Overwatch League (OWL), like other esports, has had to drastically alter its schedule as a result of the COVID-19 coronavirus. After canceling all Homestand events last week and taking a week off, the OWL will resume next weekend for Week 7.
Instead of using traditional venues with live audiences to play games, OWL teams will play from their local cities. In a separate tweet OWL Vice President Jon Spector stated that the league will be split into three groups of teams. The Atlantic Conference teams will play against one another, the four Chinese teams will play against one another, and the remaining teams in the Pacific Conference will play against each other.
This means that every team will be able to begin their season, including teams from Asia that haven’t played a single game yet. The OWL has stated that Homestands will return “as soon as it is safe and logistically possible.” For now, YouTube will stream the games.
— Overwatch League (@overwatchleague) March 15, 2020
OWL Week 7
There will be four OWL matches next weekend. The Seoul Dynasty will make their debut match on Saturday against the reigning champions, the San Francisco Shock, at 11 a.m. PST. After that, the Los Angeles Gladiators will take on the Los Angeles Valiant. On Sunday beginning at 11 a.m. PST, Seoul will play the Los Angeles Gladiators, and after them, the San Francisco Shock will play the Los Angeles Valiant.
The Pacific Conference teams have played very few games so far this season due to the coronavirus. The Dynasty have yet to play, the Gladiators and the Shock have only played one game, and the Valiant have played twice. Week 7 should give everyone a better idea of what to expect from these teams.
Hopefully, everything goes smoothly (including the servers) and we’re in for some high-quality games, even without the live audience. It will certainly be nice for Overwatch League fans to have something to watch during the pandemic.