The Florida Mayhem only have one match this week and it is against a looming powerhouse in the league, the Hangzhou Spark. Although the Mayhem recorded their first win for the Stage last week, this match against the Spark will prove to be a far greater challenge.
Sunday, June 30th
8:30 am AEST.
Season Record: 2 wins & 16 Losses
The old guard over at the Mayhem were desperate last week to show to their coaches that they still belong. Players long since believed to be slowly declining in skill, seemingly revitalised their careers last week. Players such as the much memed-upon Koo “Xepher” Jae-mo and the generally forgotten Choi “Kris” Jun-soo played brilliantly. For the truest of Mayhem fans, these players were always going to impress at some point. Although the bright light of hope put on these players by fans has finally shone for the whole world to see, this great performance still does not solidify any one player’s position in the starting roster. With so many new player acquisitions making their way to Los Angeles as you read this, the winning Mayhem of last week may not stay together for very long.
Perhaps the most beautiful spectacle of the Overwatch League in Week 3 of this stage was being able to see Ha “Sayaplayer” Jeong-woo play just as much Widowmaker and McCree as Brigitte. Sayaplayer’s long loved Widowmaker play is the stuff of legend and history. Sayaplayer solo killed three enemies in two separate team fights on Hollywood. His Widowmaker dominance can be seen in this brilliant clip:
공계가 올려주긴 했지만 내가 더 길게 잘랐으니까 pic.twitter.com/K1hfIeN5IH
— caincain (ꐦ ಠ皿ಠ ) (@caincain521) June 24, 2019
Hopefully, the Florida Mayhem can help Sayaplayer continue to feature his Widowmaker in future series.
Season Record: 12 wins & 7 Losses
The Hangzhou Spark are a team on a meteoric ascent toward the top of the season standings. They have not lost a single series against any team that is not the Shock or the Titans since Stage one. With the Titans having lost recently to the Valiant, the Shock having lost to the Outlaws and also New York losing twice against the Reign, it isn’t absurd to be placing the Spark alongside these teams in the upper echelon of the league.
Last week the Spark showed great tenacity to edge out the Seoul Dynasty in a tense series. Seoul themselves are proving to be a strong team and for Hangzhou to clutch out that win against Seoul despite all of the Dynasty’s momentum, cements the Spark as genuine contenders moving forward.
Match Prediction: Hangzhou Spark 4 – 0 Florida Mayhem
The reason why Florida were able to win last week against the Houston Outlaws was because of the stylistic match-up of those teams. Florida and Houston both like to play non-GOATS compositions and rely heavily on scrappy team fights and raw mechanical skill. Florida was able to gain momentum in that series and thus could consistently rely upon their skill. Against the Spark, however, they cannot get away with the same mistakes they made against Houston.
This is because the Spark are a well-coached, tight core. The Spark also do not play a lot of Sombra GOATS or DPS compositions. Or at least not to the extent that the Florida Mayhem do. This will be a crucial factor in the Mayhem’s ability to compete with Hangzhou. The 3-3 match requires a team to have the kind of coordination and cohesion that the Spark process, and that the Mayhem do not. If the Spark can force Florida into a GOATS mirror-match, or if Florida cannot force the Spark off of GOATS then this series will go similarly to how the San Francisco Shock match went for the Mayhem last week (the Mayhem were quite viciously 4-0’d).
For more from the Florida Mayhem writer Sam, make sure to follow him on Twitter!
“From Our Haus to Yours”.