Boston Uprising Stage 3 Review
Uprising fans have been put through the ringer after a tough Stage 3. Nearly joining the ranks of the Los Angeles Valiant, the Houston Outlaws and now the Toronto Defiant, the Uprising just barely got away with a 1-6 record. Their only victory came at the hands of the Paris Eternal, a team they faced twice during this stage. Strong teams like the Philadelphia Fusion and the San Francisco Shock found success against this struggling team, earning their own victories.
An argument could be made that Boston had one of the tougher schedules this past stage. The Outlaws finally found their stride, toppling the Shock themselves before soaring into Stage 3 playoffs. The Fusion, though a middle of the pack team, is still strong, especially when their deadly DPS come out to play. The Paris Eternal is another team that’s rising through the ranks with a new line up, and strong players ready to fight. To these teams, the Uprising—who struggled in Stage 2—were a stepping stone to more greatness.
The Down Side
It’s hard to say which individual part is the down side when the results speak for themselves. When it comes down to it, a lot of the issues that fans seemed to have with the Uprising came from their game of musical support players. For the first time since Stage 1, we saw the return of Lucio specialist Renan “alemao” Moretto. New support player Zion “Persia” Yang made his debut along alemao, shaking things up on the spot. Most people didn’t understand the intent of bringing in a new support duo this late into the season, but the Uprising did what they needed to do.
Unfortunately, the games didn’t exactly go their way. These supports weren’t well integrated with the main roster just yet, and pairing alemao with Kristian “Kellex” Keller, or even Persia with Kellex, didn’t give them the answers. Their tried and true pairing in Minseok “AimGod” “Jeff” Kwon and Kellex returned for their victory against the Paris Eternal, showing that maybe if something’s not broke, don’t try to fix it. There could be more at play there, with the Uprising trying to settle on two supports to play in a rumored 2-2-2 lock. However, blame cannot lie entirely with these support players, as the team in general looked a little frazzled from start to finish.
The Up Side
Even if they didn’t play to their highest level, it was still nice to see Boston using all of their utilities whenever they could. Persia is a touted support player from Korea, and his pick-up wasn’t for nothing. It was also enjoyable to see alemao on the starting roster again. As the first player from South America to reach the Overwatch League, his representation is important to South American viewers. The Uprising giving him more chances to shine and show his stuff is something that’s admirable, despite the odd timing to do so.
On top of that, the Uprising did what they did best one more time. In their only victory against the Paris Eternal, Boston completed another reverse sweep. That’s four in total, the most by any team in the League. These wins are impressive on a multitude of levels.
The fact that Boston can consistently deliver the level of play fans know they can bring in high stress moments is a testament to their teamwork. Though there may be a sense of pressure to keep winning when the scoreline reads 2-1, the Uprising have managed to find a centered place to channel when things get down to the wire. It’s admirable, and something that should be celebrated.
MVP of the Team
The man, the myth, the Doomfist. This stage, Jeffrey “blasé” Tsang constantly popped off. He got to show more range than before, flexing onto things like Pharah and Junkrat, and even Roadhog. Additionally, fans finally got to see his Doomfist play at intensely high levels. His consistent damage output, his ability to collect the team during low points and his sense of leadership has shown growth.
On top of that, he’s also taken a seat as the shot caller, lifting the burden from main tank superstar Cameron “Fusions” Bosworth. His gameplay combined with his calm demeanor outside of the game has truly made blasé stand out among the crowd. Stage 4 should only give him more opportunities to shine.
Stage 4 is a bit of a grab bag for the Uprising. Their schedule puts them against a lot of middle of the pack teams, some of which are currently rebuilding with new players. The Guangzhou Charge, for example, are rumored to gain a couple of new tank players. Additionally, the Chengdu Hunters are a team that are nearly impossible to prepare for. With their inventive strategies and compositions, it’s hard to tell what team fans will see when they step out onto the stage.
There are chances for some easy wins, with the Florida Mayhem in the lineup. The Washington Justice are another team that many could consider an easy win, but the last time these two faced off, the Justice pulled off a 3-2 victory. Additionally, they’ve secured a new tank line from Envy, one of the best and most well known organizations in professional Overwatch. If these new players can become integrated into their roster quickly, this could spell trouble for the Boston Uprising.
Working Through The Nitty Gritty
Hard matches come in the form of the Los Angeles Valiant, and the New York Excelsior. The old sports rivalry comes to life once more at the Kit Kat Rivalry Weekend, where Boston and New York will clash. These two teams met in Stage 1, on opening day of the League. Boston showed an impressive display, managing to full hold New York and bring them to a tie. If teams like the Atlanta Reign can figure out where the Excelsior is going, perhaps Boston could take some notes and do the same.
This stage, however, is all about little victories. Boston are just below the season playoffs contention line. If they find sweeps against teams they should be able to beat, they aren’t out just yet. Additionally, if they can prevent sweeps against them and pull some tie breakers, their map differential could see a big shift. This part of the season is where fans really start to see just how much every map matters, and for the Uprising, this stage is all about redemption. The only way is up, #BostonUp.
Featured Image Courtesy of Stewart Volland for Blizzard Enterainment.
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