The penultimate week of the Overwatch League has just come and gone. Only one more week is left for both Stage 4 and the inaugural season itself. The playoff race is becoming both clearer and more intense. I’m looking over each Overwatch League team, giving a fair description of their week along with a grade. Much like last week’s recap, the grades are my opinion, but I am trying to look at every team with no bias. For those wondering how I score my teams, it is stated in a quote on this page. To start off the second last week:
Seoul, in this stage, has officially become a mid-tier team. While they were thought to be one of the best teams in the league at the very beginning, their inconsistency and flexibility have led them here. In this week, they convincingly lost against the Boston Uprising 3-1 and got reverse swept by the Philadelphia Fusion 3-2. They had moments of greatness, but it feels like the issues they’ve had all season haven’t been fixed. Fleta is no longer the meta, and their main tank Miro isn’t even playing for personal reasons. While Gambler, Wekeed, and Ryujehong are still good players, they don’t seem to be close form-wise to the top teams.
They aren’t mathematically out of the season playoffs yet, but they need a two-win week next week to have a chance. With their upcoming matches being against a reinvigorated Dallas Fuel and a top seed Los Angeles Gladiators, I can’t see them winning both. But this week, I’m giving them a 3/10.
It finally looks like Boston has gotten their footing again, and in a good time. The winning streak this team got earlier this year skyrocketed them up the standings but got halted by a losing streak. The losing streak ended at six, with their first match in this week being a 3-1 win against the Seoul Dynasty. That win was followed with a clean 4-0 sweep against the Shanghai Dragons, confirming that they’ve recovered from their mistakes. Putting Striker on as a full-time Widowmaker player seems to be a smart move, with Mistakes focusing on adapting with his larger hero pool. Their new integration of AimGod on Zenyatta seems to have given them even more offensive capability, along with a more cohesive team in general.
Even though one of their two wins was against the Dragons, they have guaranteed a season playoff spot with those two wins. Due to this, I’m giving them a 7/10.
As much as I didn’t want to say this, it was confirmed with this last week: the Shanghai Dragons won’t have one win in their entire inaugural season. They showed a lot of skill against the Florida Mayhem but ended up losing in a map five, 3-2. Just after, they got swept 4-0 by the Boston Uprising, pulling them back down to earth after their close match. I mentioned last week how their only match I saw them winning was against Florida, and they didn’t. Diya is great when on form, but inconsistent as can be. Fearless is earning a spot in next years team, and Geguri is still good. The issues with this team’s coordination and consistency are the reason they haven’t won a single match.
Their upcoming matches are only tougher. They’d need a miracle to win one of those two. But this week, they’re getting a 2/10.
Florida managed to kill the hopes of all Shanghai fans this week, but even with their win, still are clearly a bottom three team. They won a close match against the Dragons 3-2 but got swept 4-0 by the Dallas Fuel. While their match against the Dragons showed intensity, it didn’t really show skill like the top teams. Sayaplayer is still one of the best Widowmakers in the league, and Logix almost singlehandedly ended all hope for Dragons fans in that first game. In the game against the Fuel, it was back to reality for the Mayhem. Their players disappeared and got walked over by Dallas.
Next week, their last two matches aren’t easy. London and Boston are both trying to stay in the playoffs, and the Mayhem will try to play spoiler. But this week, I’m giving them a 4/10.
Dallas is continuing to be the pleasant surprise of this stage but still is a mid-tier team. Starting the week with a 3-1 loss to the Houston Outlaws showed some swerve, but they proved their place with a 4-0 sweep against the Mayhem. Taimou has been showing his skills in this stage, and OGE and Mickie are showing good coordination. While Houston did beat them well, the circumstances put Houston with more desire to win; fighting for a season playoff spot. Their win against Mayhem showed the world that they have a shot for the Stage 4 playoffs. The competition is fierce though, and they will have to work harder to secure making it in.
Their last two matches are against a poor form Seoul team, but also against the red-hot Valiant. They need the win against Seoul, but this week they’re getting a 5/10.
Houston also went 1-1 this week, but this isn’t the time for them to do this. This team is fighting tooth and nail for a playoff spot, and they only showed up for one of the matches this week. While they beat the Fuel 3-1, they also got swept 4-0 by the stage leaders Los Angeles Valiant. This team is ironically what the Valiant was a couple of stages ago; very inconsistent. While the Outlaws fans were screaming about how this stage was theirs, the Fuel took that title off of them. Linkzr can win games for them, but also lose games for them. Arhan looks good, but not as much of a star player as people think. Jake is not being used as much, which is showing in their results.
While their last two matches aren’t easy, they need to step it up to have a shot in the season playoffs. I’m giving them a 4/10.
Los Angeles Valiant
This team might just be the best team in Overwatch right now. With two more wins notched under their belt, they are not only officially the best team in not only Stage 4, but also the leaders of the Pacific division. Due to this, they get a bye in the first round of the season playoffs along with the New York Excelsior. This week, they won a tough game against a better looking London Spitfire 2-1, and also swept the Houston Outlaws 4-0. While the London game showed why they aren’t the best team overall this season, the Houston game showed why they are the best team right now. Soon and Agilities are proving to be a very consistent and reliable combo, along with their tanks Space and Fate. Everyone is performing very well on this team, showing how teamwork is key.
The only issue that many people pointed out for this team is their lack of success in the playoffs, and how they don’t exactly have a star player for that time. But for now, these players are sitting pretty. I’m giving them a 9/10 and my team of the week.
This week must’ve been grueling for Spitfire fans, as both matches that they played were very close games. While they played well, they ended up losing both and going 0-2 this week, making the playoff race in this last week even tenser. They lost a 2-1 game against the Valiant before getting reverse swept 3-2 by the Gladiators. Their players seem to be simply playing better together, but the coaching is a clear issue. They simply aren’t trying to counter their opponents like teams have to this patch, despite their best efforts. For example, in the Gladiators match, they got off to a great start. Birdring and Profit were playing to their standards and carrying their team to two map wins. Then the Gladiators started to play Hydration on Doomfist, and that was the end of the match.
They need to reorganize their team because they are frighteningly close to being a top team. They are leaving space for them to get eliminated. I’m giving them a 3/10.
Los Angeles Gladiators
The other LA team had a very nervous week but managed to show resilience in two 3-2 reverse sweep wins. While the first was against a sandbagging New York Excelsior, the second was against an improving London Spitfire. Their team is really starting to show how versatile it is, and how much they can use it to their advantage in crucial games. With these two wins, they are almost locked up for the season and stage playoffs. Fissure is continuing to play his role perfectly, haunting the London team that let him go earlier this season. Bischu and Void are being rotated well and Surefour and Hydration are still a very good combo.
The last two regular games this season are crucial for this team’s season playoff hopes. But this week, I’m giving them an 8/10.
New York Excelsior
This team is showing nothing in terms of strategy for the rest of the season. With their two recent losses against the LA teams, with the most recent one being the 3-2 reverse sweep by the Gladiators, they are hiding their plays. They are running simple sets of players, playing the fundamentals as hard as possible to win games. While this isn’t going to win you all games, it still wins you some. The key example of this was their 2-1 win over the San Francisco Shock. The lack of counters from the Shock side and the skill of the New York players led them to the match win, even if they were trying not to show strategies that the enemies haven’t seen. Libero and Saebyeolbe are continuing to be star players, with JJonak still being an MVP candidate.
They really don’t need to win the next two matches, but they did mention how they wanted to have a chance at all stage playoffs as well as the season one. This week, I’m giving them a 6/10.
San Francisco Shock
While the Valiant are the best team in Overwatch League right now, I personally say that the Shock are the most entertaining to watch. Not only that, but they have the most potential for next season. Although, this week they fought hard but lost both matches 2-1, against the Philadelphia Fusion and the Excelsior. While their strategy was good and their players are great, they just fell short both games. Whether it was a simple error from a single player or a coordination problem, both those matches could’ve gone either way. The 0-2 week isn’t as bad as it says, but it does cause issues for their hopes of the Stage 4 playoffs.
They need to bounce back this week and hope one of the better teams falls out to have a chance to win some money and credibility. This week, I’m giving them a 4/10.
The Fusion are starting to show some of the resilience and comeback potential they showed in Stage 2. With two wins led by the attackers Carpe and EQO, this team is very close to getting a spot in the season and stage playoffs. A 2-1 win over the Shock and a 3-2 reverse sweep over the Dynasty made the fans still have hope. While Sado and Hotba aren’t as convincingly good as they were at the start of the stage, the teamwork of the attackers are leading them to wins. My risky idea for this team is to try their older tank duo of Poko and Fragi for one of their matches next week, to see their potential for the playoffs.
With this last week being crucial, anything less than two wins will be a disappointment for them. This week, I’m giving them a 7/10.