It was a week of close calls and sweeping victories in the midpoint week of Stage 3 of the Overwatch League. Teams that stumbled out of the gates are getting their footing back while others are just now tripping up.
It all started with the Battle for LA as the Gladiators and Valiant went toe to toe. The Valiant pulled ahead this time, as they have been for most of Stage 3. The match went to map five, however, so it was a close game. Next came a sweeping victory from the San Francisco Shock, who took down the Dallas Fuel 4-0. The Shock seem to be figuring some things out, as the learn to work with a new roster. Dallas put Seagull in for the first time in a while and even his mad Junkrat skills were unable to help them get the win. Wednesday concluded with another resounding victory from the Seoul Dynasty, who thwarted the Shanghai Dragons in an attempt at their first win. Shanghai was able to take Illios, but it ended up 3-1.
Thursday started off with a surprise as the Florida Mayhem were able to take the first map in their fight against the Houston Outlaws. Sadly for them, their victory would not last as Houston took the next three rounds. A close match between the Boston Uprising and the London Spitfire followed, with the unstoppable Uprising taking the win in the end. These are two teams that have had a surprising Stage 3, as Boston began to rise through the ranks, and London slips down to a current ninth place. London were the Stage 1 champions, and with few roster changes, it’s hard to know why they’ve begun to stumble. Thursday wrapped up with a tough match between the Philadelphia Fusion and the New York Excelsior. A strong start and poor performance later on led to the Fusion’s demise, as New York pulled off the infamous reverse sweep.
It was a sad 24 hours for the Philadelphia Fusion, as their back-to-back games both ended up in defeat. Friday’s schedule had them up against the new and improved San Francisco Shock, who came out of it 3-1. Week 3 officially puts the Shock in the running for Stage 3 playoffs. Friday gave the Shanghai Dragons their best chance at winning their first game of the season, as it pitted them against the Florida Mayhem, who are right above them in eleventh place. They were unable to get there, however, as Florida took a 3-1 win. With a draw in round two, the final game of the day between the Boston Uprising and the Seoul Dynasty ended in the illusive 2-1 score, with Boston coming out on top. This again, as Boston climbs through the ranks, and Seoul starts to slip.
Saturday began with a much-needed victory from the London Spitfire, who took down the second place LA Valiant 3-2. It was an edge-of-your-seat game, too, with London averting the reverse sweep in game five. Next up was New York versus the LA Gladiators, with the Excelsior taking it home. And they pulled off their second win of the week the same way they did their first — with the reverse sweep. The final game of the week between the Houston Outlaws and the Dallas Fuel ended quickly, with a 3-0 win for Houston.
This week leaves the Uprising in first place, having still not lost a game. The Valiant and Excelsior are right behind with one loss, and San Francisco will be fighting for their playoff spot with two losses. Next week, we’ll see if the London Spitfire can rise from out of their funk and if there are any more surprises left up the Fusion’s sleeves. This stage has probably been the most jarring, as the top two teams were nowhere near there just one stage ago. And with only two weeks left before playoffs, it will be interesting to see if they are able to keep their ranks.
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