Shanghai Dragons (2-3) vs Dallas Fuel (3-2)
Just a hair over six days ago, the Dragons took a heartbreaking and close loss to the Dallas Fuel, 2-3. The Dragons took an early 2-1 lead, but a mental mistake on Dorado psyched out Shanghai the rest of the way. With the match all in the past, the Dragons came in hungry for revenge.
Dallas Fuel 4 – 0 Shanghai Dragons
Nepal: Dallas 2 – 1 Shanghai
The Village was taken by storm for Shanghai. The Dragons won it out 100% – 0%, and it all began with a quick first team fight. Se-yeon “Geguri” Kim started for the Dragons on D.Va, and came out with two eliminations right away. Followed up by her tank counterpart, Young-jin “Gamsu” Noh, an earthshatter stunned four Fuel members and eliminated all but Richard “rCk” Kanerva. The Shanghai duo would again steal the final two team fights, taking the hot start for the Dragons.
The second round seemingly flipped in favor for the Fuel. rCk opened up on Sombra, and it caused issues for Shanghai. Zachary “ZachaREEE” Lombardo opened up with a rally and combined with a Min-seok “OGE” Son shatter to continue a strong push. A final push by Shanghai was absolutely stunned by rCk, as his translocator (set above the Dragons on a ledge) gave him the opportunity to EMP and win.
You wouldn’t be able to spell ‘whacky’ without this third round. Geguri had a graviton surge eaten, Hammond stole the point, Yong-Jin “YOUNGJIN” Jin ran out on Reaper and Min-seong “diem” Bae came out of spawn on Widowmaker. This map went back-and-forth all round long, and the Dragons looked like they clinched the map at a 99% – 77% advantage. With the Fuel stalling, an excellent minefield, perfectly placed self-destruct and Dylan “aKm” Bignet on Tracer, Dallas was able to flip the point and clinch 100% for a 1-0 lead.
Hollywood: Dallas 3 – 2 Shanghai
The Dragons came out on offense to start, and Jin-hyeok “DDing” Yang helped to snowball the first part of the map on Sombra to cap the point and then some. The celebration didn’t last long though, as Shanghai took approximately five and a half minutes to reach point B. This was due largely in part to three EMPs from rCk, including one that covered all six Dragons. Gamsu came up too aggressively after the Dragons capped B, and it forced Shanghai to use their rally and sound barrier ultimates (despite Gamsu already being eliminated). This pinned the Dragons in a tight spot, and they sadly couldn’t push much father than B.
The Dallas Fuel needed only four team fights in order to steal Hollywood. In an awkward rotation that put Dallas on the point and Shanghai on the high ground, the Dragons miscommunicated and dropped down unevenly. This split was easy for the Fuel to capitalize on and cap point A, and the snowball continued. The round ended in the Fuel’s favor after OGE shattered two, rCk denied on “CoMa” Kyung Woo’s sound barrier and led the way to the golden box. The Dallas Fuel ended the map easily to secure a 2-0 lead at halftime.
Temple of Anubis: Dallas 3 – 2 Shanghai
Benjamin “uNKOE” Chevasson came out on defense a madman on Zenyatta. The Fuel’s French support took part in five Dragon eliminations in the first team fight. The Fuel seemed impenetrable, as their choice to disengage after being down two players still won them the fight without giving up the point to Shanghai. The Dragons capped A thanks mainly to Seong-hyeon “Luffy” Yang using his transcendence to deny the graviton surge. In a fight for point B, Dallas split at the last second, giving the Dragons an easy chance to cap the round in overtime.
Not only did the Dragons struggle on Dallas’ attack in regular time, but also in the extra round. Things started well when Shanghai baited three Dallas support ultimates in the first fight, two happening at the same time. This didn’t last long, as uNKOE pushed aggressively and faced little to no pressure from Shanghai. Causing a lot of problems for Gamsu and Joon-hwan “GuardiaN” Cho, the Fuel sealed the victory by taking a 3-0 lead.
Route 66: Dallas 5 – 4 Shanghai
A great map for both teams on offense, Shanghai came out swinging for the fences with Gamsu. He took two eliminations in the first fight, and the Dragons capped the first point with four minutes left. On their way to B, Luffy transcended before Dallas’ graviton and EMP, and it let the Fuel roll over the Dragons. This was likely the only spec of dirt on Luffy for this map, as he only took about 1:09 (on average) to gain his ultimate. The final push for Shanghai lasted through a six-man EMP, moving back in after a second and capped the final point.
Capping point A for the Fuel was certainly a BibleThump moment for the Dragons. Focused on the team fight (and not the payload), rCk was able to sneak onto Sombra behind enemy lines to give the Fuel more time on the clock. This wouldn’t be the only good deed of rCk, as he continually gave the Dragons issues with more EMPs. The Dragons would be unable to hold off the Fuel’s crashing offense, and they went into overtime.
Dallas came out on attack and circled the Dragons, picking them off one-by-one to help cap point A in overtime. As DDing had the EMP ready, the Fuel disengaged a few meters to be on guard. This gave diem the chance to grav, and you could say that the Fuel were forced to perform a C9.
The Dragons looked to push the cart further than the Fuel, crashing rCk and OGE early back into respawn. This allowed the Dragons to make their push, but aKm wasn’t letting the Dragons steal a map. He took part in two quick eliminations on DDing and YOUNGJIN to pressure the Dragons enough to lose the fight. The Fuel would finish sweeping Shanghai 4-0.
Although the boxscore will say that the Dragons were swept by the Fuel, it doesn’t tell the tale fully. Three of the four maps went into overtime, and one or two of these maps could have been flipped. Throughout the match, Shanghai overall seemed predictable. Even subbing in GuardiaN, the Fuel knew every move the Dragons were going to make. Whether it was ultimate use or where they would push, Dallas always seemed one step ahead. With a tough fight against the London Spitfire next, the Dragons are going to need to pull a wildcard to take this win.
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