It’s official—next year, the Overwatch League is coming home. For fans who live outside of the Los Angeles area, this means games will now be played in each team’s home state. Per the initial announcement, released by Blizzard last Tuesday, each team will be responsible for holding a minimum of two Homestand Weekends. Much like the very successful Atlanta Homestead Weekend, and the Dallas Homestand Weekend, each team can now host their own events, and local fans can watch the games in person, for the very first time.
Among the 20 current teams in the League, there’s been a division. The Atlantic Conference and the Pacific Conference now house 10 teams, with the division going further. On the Atlantic side, there’s the North Division, and the South Division. For the Pacific, it’s the East Division and the West Division.
For Uprising fans, the North Atlantic Division is what’s important. Among the five teams selected for the North Division are the Boston Uprising, the New York Excelsior, the Paris Eternal, the London Spitfire and the Toronto Defiant. This means that both of the EU teams are among the North Division, as well as one of the expansion teams from Canada. This list should make Uprising fans happy for many, many reasons.
How the Boston Uprising Measure Up
Most people would consider the Boston Uprising a middle of the pack team when put against the other 19 teams in the League. With powerhouses on the West Coast like the Vancouver Titans, the San Francisco Shock and both of the LA teams, the Uprising has had a bit of a tough time in the recent Stage of the Overwatch League. However, the teams they’ve been placed with next year offer huge opportunities for improvements, and to show why Boston can never be counted out. These teams give Boston a chance to get better, to grind and to climb the ladder of the best.
5: Toronto Defiant
Most would consider the Toronto Defiant at the bottom of a tier list when it comes to ranking each team. Their current performance in the League has been sub-par, with their score in Stage 3 ending on an 0-7.
However, their recent signings in DPS superstars Liam “Mangachu” Campbell and Andreas “Logix” Berghmans should be duly noted. Additionally, in a strange turn of fate, Boston has recently acquired a former Defiant member in Tracer specialist Do-hyung “Stellar” Lee. Stellar’s performance in Stage 1 cannot be forgotten, and with practice and synergy, Boston should be able to topple the Defiant.
4: Paris Eternal
The Paris Eternal are another team that have been struggling to find their stride. Stage 3 saw them just barely miss out on Stage Playoffs, and it seems like something’s finally clicking. Paris beat Boston the first time these two teams met, and Boston returned the favor to snatch their own win. It seems like these two teams are evenly matched, and have formed just a bit of a rivalry with how close their series were. Karol “Danye” Szcześniak is a hidden gem, with niche picks like Mei to rival the Doomfist specialist on Boston, Jeffrey “blase” Doomfist. Boston’s initial starting lineup gets the upper hand, only slightly, due to their well formed synchronization. If Paris can settle on a starting six and find a good way to glue their very talented players together, they could rise through the ranks, too.
3: Boston Uprising
The Uprising rest third in their own Division, putting them in the very middle. Better than Toronto and Paris, but struggling against London and New York, Boston have some work to do. The London Spitfire are a team that are hard to prepare for. Fans never truly know which team will make their debut, and if their refined skills will show, or flop. If Boston can tighten their DPS play and find some unique compositions in the upcoming 2-2-2 lock, they stand a chance at dethroning London. Only time, and practice, will tell where Boston sits.
2: London Spitfire
The reigning champions reside in the North Division, giving them an edge against every other team they face. London has shown before how well they can play together, and why they won the whole thing in the inaugural season. However, London fails in the face of high pressure situations, and fans have often seen them lose out on a chance to prove themselves in Stage Playoffs time and time again. Where London thrives is their infamous Dive composition; with Joon-yeong “Profit” Park now out of a GOATs centric meta, it’s very possible that the old London fans who have often lamented will make a reappearance.
1: New York Excelsior
Undoubtedly, the NYXL are the strongest team in this division. Their track record more than proves it, and their strong roster is only going to get stronger as 2-2-2 comes through. Lately, they’ve fielded their captain and star player in Jong-ryeol “Saebyeolbe” Park, who is known for his intensely high levels of Tracer play. Alongside their powerful damage players are their incredible tank duo, Dong-gyu “Mano” Kim and Tae-hong “MekO” Kim.
With damage support Sung-hyeon “JJoNak” Bang at their side, with Taesung “Anamo” Jung in tow, this team is well rounded, and the team to beat. Boston has taken down NYXL once before, in Season One of the League. When they met at the beginning of this year, Boston held their own, but still fell to a defeat. Boston’s job will be to help dethrone the NYXL, and put in the work to dismantle their synergy. If Atlanta can do it, so can they.
The Fight for the North: Boston is Coming
Overall, Boston has a good chance of proving themselves against tough competition. Each team in this Division has a chance to get better, and to make every series competitive and nail biting. As of right now, it has not been specified how many Homestand Weekends Boston will play host to. However, it’s been stated that New York will host two, as well as Toronto. This leaves room for Boston to play host more than twice, and there’s no greater feeling than being in a room full of other Boston fans. Memorize Sweet Caroline, get the Uprising jerseys ready, and prepare for what’s sure to be an incredible Division in 2020.
Feature image courtesy of @PlayOverwatch on Twitter.
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