WHAT’S WRONG WITH DALLAS?
The Fuel aren’t exactly where everyone expected them to be so far. No wins in four games isn’t a good look given the pedigree, though the Fuel finally showed some cohesion and a little fight towards the tail end of their battle with the Spitfire. It’s certainly not the kind of result they expected even at this early stage, let alone the hype surrounding them before the season began. Is it a case of underestimating the competition, or is there an underlying issue that management aren’t willing to share?
And then there’s the story of Félix “xQc” Lengyel, suspended for the next few weeks following homophobic comments during a live stream. It’s a testy issue so far for both team owners and Blizzard themselves, how much freedom do you give your players in their down time and how do you react when they cross the line? Overwatch League is wants to be seen as a professional, organized league, and it’s players are going to have to get used to being held to a much higher standard than they are used to.
WELCOME TO THE PARTY, HOUSTON
Both victories this past week for the Outlaws were impressive, steamrolling the Dragons and shutting down the Dallas attack. Of course we’re still at a point where teams are feeling out the competition and figuring out the best kinds of strategy to use later on down the track. In Houston’s case, they know they can do better and they went some way to prove that this weekend, but it’ll take a lot more than that if they’re going to become a threat to the rest of the competition. A win over the Fuel sounded great over the off-season, but given the Fuel’s start, it’s not as impressive anymore. Still, fans of Houston have to be happy with how the beginning of this season is going.
Despite the issues surrounding the Fuel, some OWL teams are using social media as a means to band together. Case in point, both Florida and the Dragons might be struggling compared to the rest of the league, but there’s a lot of respect between both teams as they both try to turn things around. Those signs of respect are prevalent across the league with teams tweeting each other and shouting out GG’s. Positive vibes all around.
GGs, @ShanghaiDragons . I have so much respect for their players for how much they grind. Just gotta remember it’s a marathon and not a sprint so any team can turn it around.
— Tim Bylund (@Manneten) January 20, 2018
THRILLERS AMONG THE TOP TEAMS
Week two had its fair share of one-sided games, but there were plenty of great matches that went down to the wire and really showed off how good the OWL can be when two teams of equal standing put everything they have into each map. Two overtime games, where Lijiang Tower is used as the tie-breaker, had plenty of edge of your steam moments. At times even the commentators found themselves a little lost given the crazy sequences of events between the hometown Valiant and the more fancied Spitfire, whilst the Gladiators pulled out a big come from behind win over the Fusion. For all the talk of too many 4-0 results, there’s an unrivaled level of excitement when an Overwatch game goes down to the wire.
VALIANT STILL ON TRACK
Here’s your true dark horse of the league. The Valiant might have come out of week two with two losses to their name, but they’re two of the better losses of the season when you consider who they were up against. They certainly didn’t make life easy for New York, and then found themselves in an almighty tussle with the Spitfire, so despite the results there should be plenty of positive vibes running through the team and their fans and as the season progresses, they could improve enough to turn those losses into wins next time around.
THE DRAGONS ARE A MESS
Whatever’s going on within the Dragons’ camp, it needs to change and fast. The team isn’t anywhere near the same level of competition and are, right now, just making up the numbers in this first season. The improvements are slow, they showed some fight in their match-up against Florida, but the road is a very long one if they can’t find a winning formula. All the back room talk isn’t helping either, with long training sessions pushing these players to the brink before they’re even on stage, worrying some fans in the process. For the sake of the players and the future of the league, let’s keep those fingers crossed that the Dragons can continue to push on and prove their worth.
HIGHLIGHT OF THE WEEK – RIPPING IT UP
Allow London Spirfire’s Profit to teach you the proper etiquette of blowing things up. As the kids say in Ireland, that’s deadly!