The Washington Justice have their first-ever homestead this weekend at the D.C. Anthem. It will be the first of five Homestand events hosted by the D.C.-based team. We already got a preview of the Justice’s play when they performed last week, at the Philly homestead. But this week, they’ll have the fans on their side. Here’s what you need to know about this weekend’s upcoming homestead; the matches to watch and the crucial storylines to think about going into this weekend.
Watch Home Games:
It’s become somewhat of an unwritten rule to watch the matches of the team hosting any given homestead. There is something indisputable about the energy from the crowd, that makes these matches so entertaining to watch. The effect of the so-called, 7th player. The impact the crowd has in rallying their hometown team, make these primetime matches worth the watch.
It will be interesting to gauge the Justices play when they have the crowd on their side. Last week at the Philly homestead, the Justice played a close series against the Philadelphia Fusion. Fusion is ranked very highly by many, so the fact Justice could play head-to-head with them came as a shock to some.
The Justice also played against the Houston Outlaws, in a fairly one-sided match. Houston had an unfortunate performance in Philadelphia, but the match still highlighted the Justices strong DPS duo. Corey “Corey” Nigra back on his preferred hitscan role and Ethan “Stratus” Yankel on the Mei were looking confident all series long.
This weekend, the Justice will likely be considered the favorites for both their matches. They face off against the Paris Eternal on Saturday and then against the London Spitfire on Sunday. Paris and London last played back in Week 1, both teams had their moments on stage. Paris, in particular, with their revamped roster looked good in Week 1, could prove to be an interesting opponent this weekend.
London, on the other hand, has yet to pick up a win. The London Spitfire, the Inaugural Season champions, was completely rebuilt during the off-season and filled with rookie players. London will probably find it hard to get a win this week against the Washington Justice.
Other Rivalries: Top Tier
Philadelphia Fusion vs. the New York Excelsior.
The first match to kick off this Washington D.C. Homestead will probably be a kicker. Potential the best of the entire weekend. The Fusion and Excelsior have had a long going rivalry since season one of the Overwatch League. Fusion famously knocked out the Excelsior out of the playoffs in Season 1, but their rivalry started long before that.
Their matches are always very close. Both teams are highly ranked in just about everyone’s power rankings. This match could easily go all the way. New York has historically played a slow and passive style. While Fusion is famous for its very aggressive playstyle, the contrast of their different playstyles has always made for an interesting game.
An interesting head to head in this matchup will be flex support versus flex support. Fusion recently brought up Kyung-bo “Alarm” Kim from their tier 2 team. Alarm is considered by many to be a potential nominee for this season rookie of the year award. Meanwhile, New York Excelsior has Season 1 MVP winner, and famously deadly flex support player Sung-hyeon “JJoNak” Bang. How these two play against each other may prove to be a leading storyline for this matchup.
Bottom Tier Rivalries?
Boston Uprising vs Houston Outlaws
This weekend will also be a fight against those at the bottom of the leadership boards. Houston disappointing showing at the Philadelphia homestead weekend left many confused at what to expect from this team. During the off-season, Hoston picked up many star players, yet their pickups don’t appear to have alleviated their issues.
Meanwhile, the Boston Uprising has also fallen short this season. Uprising also rebuilt their roster this season, collecting a group of players from the tier 2 teams. This match is fairly important to both teams, trying to look for their first win this season and prove to doubters they aren’t on the bottom.
Overall, this weekend is sure to have a lot of exciting storylines for many fans. But another important narrative to consider this weekend is that this homestead, in particular, is a test on the homestead model. D.C. is a city not exactly known as an esports hub, unlike New York or Dallas. D.C. is charged with five homesteads this season. This first homestead will likely be a nice indicator as to how well or perhaps not so well, the homestead model can be.
Featured photo credit to Stewart Volland For Blizzard Entertainment
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