Buy or Sell: Where do the Shanghai Dragons rank?
After a tough first week of play, will the Shanghai Dragons be able to climb out of the bottom half of the table?
After a shaky preseason performance, it was obvious that the Shanghai Dragons were not the overt contenders they were once touted to be. Losing a tough five game series to Boston Uprising didn’t help their chances for potential, but Uprising has been the unanimous sleeper team amongst coaches and pros all across the OWL. As the season started this past Wednesday, the Dragons found themselves on the bad end of a lopsided 4-0 defeat as they seemed best on all fronts by the LA Gladiators.
The first loss was bad enough, but following up that performance with a 3-1 loss to San Francisco Shock was adding insult to injury. It’s quite obvious that the level of play for Shanghai is not on par with the rest of the league. Against the Gladiators, the supports and flex DPS just didn’t have what it takes to trump the ever imposing threat of surefour and Shaz on his patented Zenyatta. Against San Francisco, Babybay, DhaK and sleepy had no equal on the side of Shanghai as their damage threats and healing capabilities were left unchecked as they cruised to victories in games three and four.
All is not lost for the Dragons at this point. Of course, it’s only week one of the League, and there will be plenty of opportunities to improve the roster and become more refined in their strategies moving forward. The big anchors on this roster seem to be Diya and Xushu as they continue to be the most steady players on a roster that can be outplayed severely at times. Once every team can play every other team once or twice, it will be easier to get an apparent gauge on their skill, but from the first week of action it is obvious that there are plenty of holes to fill at this elite level of play.
Time will tell if Shanghai are capable of making these changes. At this point, it’s not likely they’ll be pushing for a playoff spot, but a Chinese team at the absolute last place in an international league does not seem likely for the Dragons if they can solidify a few factors in their play. Moving forward, it will be imperative for them to ramp up the teamwork and pull the trigger faster than their Korean counterparts. Undead is still a player that has given life (ironically) to a team that finds it difficult to land damage when it counts. If they can continue playing around his positive plays on the enemy support then that may be their real blueprint for success in the coming weeks.
In the following weeks, facing teams like Florida Mayhem and Philadelphia Fusion may help their chances to succeed by picking up valuable morale wins before taking on more prestigious opponents.