It was another explosive week of action in the OWL, with many teams providing some extra spice in their matchups for us to digest!
This week the Philadelphia Fusion cemented themselves as the top dog. They are the only team left undefeated in APAC. Going into week 3 they are the favorite to win the May Melee from the APAC side. The Dragons still have a chance this week to pull back from their mediocre performance in week 1, but for right now, Philly is the team to beat.
Chengdu is slowly moving their way out of the “Chengdu Zone” and proving to be a consistently strong team. This week they were tested to their limits by the Fusion and showed some signs of weakness. Flexibility seems to be an issue with this team. Against the Fusion they tired too hard to force the Pharah. If this continues to be a problem, they may fall down the rankings a bit.
Danteh had a medical emergency this week causing him to miss games and Houston still showed up. Going 4-0 into the May Melee and proving that their roster is deeper than their starting 6 has been about as good of a start to a season that one could ask for. The May Melee will put the Outlaws to a more rigorous test to see if they can handle the pressure.
Los Angeles Gladiators:
Concerns were relieved this week when Gladiators bounced back from their tough 0-2 start to last week. This week the Gladiators reduced their excessive substitutions and performed well with a solid line-up. The DPS specifically, in birdring and kevster are looking very strong on this team. The other roles have a lot of star power, but we have yet to fully see it.
The Fuel had a strong week taking a map off Justice and destroying Boston 3-0. Fearless unleashed the beast this weekend and showed what this tank line is capable of. Sp9rk1e’s tracer is holding up to the competition which was a big concern going into the season. Fuel is still getting bailed out by the meta not being so restrictive at the moment. If we fall into a meta that requires a dedicated hit-scan then Fuel fans can start to panic.
The Paris Eternal defeated the Titans which was expected, but gave Outlaws a run for their money and took a map off them. We still don’t expect Paris to perform that well, but they may end up being a gatekeeper for the weakest teams in the league. In terms of fantasy, if Paris can continue to push better teams to their limits, even if they lose, Paris players will return strong fantasy points.
New York Excelsior:
We still need to see more matches from NYXL before we judge them too clearly. After looking absolutely futile against the Hunters, NYXL pulled out a strong 3-1 win over the Spark. APAC has always been the harder region to judge, but overall NYXL looked alright. It seemed like each role had one strong player and one weaker player holding them back. Like many other teams, their DPS looked the strongest with Flora being the best player to be excited about.
The expectations for Boston were middling with high hopes. After this week Boston still may be somewhere in the middle but they cannot hang with the top teams. We have yet to see GaeBullSsi play which could be a potential turning point for this team when they go full Korean. Going into week 3 they have a tough match against Justice and then what should be their first win against London.
The Vancouver Titans end the week 0-4 but that score line doesn’t tell the whole story. It should be noted that the Titans have taken a map off of every team that they have played. Additionally, 3 of the 4 teams Titans have lost to are currently undefeated. We’re not saying the Titans are good by any stretch, but they may be better than most people are giving them credit for.
Many people had low expectations for this team but high hopes. Unfortunately, this week, the expectations beat out the hope. On paper this team is stacked but there are too many external issues. This weekend they showed signs of life but still failed. Some of the problems MIGHT include the coaching staff which recently changed and the language barrier. It feels like this team has no identity and needs fixing fast.
The Spitfire looked to be the weaker of the two EU teams. Something to keep in mind is that they had a really hard schedule last week and this upcoming week it should be a little easier. They showed some bright spots in their matches, going into week 3 will give us a better idea of what they’re capable of. Their tanks put in some good work, their biggest issue in week 2 seemed to be their support line.