Overwatch League: Stage 2 Week 2 Recap
With two weeks left till Overwatch’s first ever Homestand Weekend, the Dallas Fuel have finally started to put the pieces together as they do picked up two wins over playoff contending teams. Los Angeles Valiant picked up their first win of the 2019 season in a slim 3-2 victory over Atlanta Reign, who are still finding their identity as a team this stage. Hangzhou Spark also made headlines for ending Boston Uprising’s win streak and preventing them from securing playoff placement. The top four remain dominant, but there’s still plenty more to fight for en route to Stage Two Playoffs for the rest of the middle of the pack teams.
Dallas Fuel show their heart
Dallas Fuel have easily been the most loved and hated American team since joining the Overwatch League last year. This year’s early season got off to a rocky start once some of Dallas’ players and head coaches were making more news from their comments on other teams rather than their performances.
After taking a much needed dose of humble pie in Stage One, Dallas Fuel have regrouped and started to find a winning strategy that’s focused on all six of their players relying on one another for victory. The level of team play it took to close out the Toronto Defiant is a perfect example of their ferocious pressure Dallas can apply when they have the momentum.
From all angles, Dallas Fuel have impact players on multiple roles. OGE has become a staple at Main Tank and is steadily etching his name into Dallas Fuel lore based on his consistent performances. NotE and aKm have also fallen into their roles in GOATS and in standard play remarkably well. Between the coaching staff and their ever expanding flexible hero pools for the players, the hype is at a fever pitch for Dallas Fuel once again as they make their first trip ‘home’ in just two weeks.
LA Valiant get their first win
The LA Valiant got an incredibly bad start to the season in Stage One, and it seemed like the trend was only set to continue after the first week of action. Surprisingly, Los Angeles Valiant put together a formidable counter attack against the Atlanta Reign, and were able to secure their first win of 2019 in an effort to assuage some of their most heated critics thus far.
The fall from grace has been epic to say the least for this team, and its obvious that there are extra curricular issues here at play that are preventing this squad from playing at full capacity. With this win, LA Valiant are virtually tied with both Florida Mayhem and Washington Justice, but one could argue that talent wise, LA Valiant are still way ahead of the pack considering these three teams.
This win for LA is by no means the turn around point for their atrocious season thus far, but it is a vital first step into changing the narrative around their roster. Look for LA Valiant to continue beating their rivals on the bottom half of the standings, but middle of the pack is still too far out of reach for this squad.
Hangzhou Spark end the streak
Boston Uprising could have been considered one of the Overwatch League’s hottest teams after their insane run of results the last two weeks, but alas, all good things must come to an end in this league, and Hanghou Spark were the catalyst in this series.
Hangzhou Spark were universally heralded in the league heading into the 2019 season for being scrim gods in practice, but they have faced their own set of growing pains on stage as they try to push themselves into the limelight. Guxue was seen as a bit of a hindrance for his team during Stage One, but the synergy being built between him, Krystal and GodsB has been the difference maker for Hangzhou in their wins.
When this team does finally get a chance to click, their potential is sky high. Hangzhou are still a relatively inexperienced roster with a lack of veteran presence on their team. Once the dust begins to settle and win streaks start establishing for the rest of the teams, we may see Hangzhou resurge to their preseason godliness status after all.