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Los Angeles Valiant: Stage 2 Week 5 Preview

Fans entered Week 4 with some hope that the Los Angeles Valiant would keep their winstreak up, however the odds were certainly against them. In the end, they could not pull out a win against either of their opponents. Week 5 pits the Valiant against a wholly mid-tier team, but that will not make it an easy series.

Review

Dallas Fuel (8-5)

Los Angeles Valiant Stage 2 Week 5
Courtesy of the Dallas Fuel

Because of the LA Valiant’s showing in their past two matches, many decided to not simply write off this match as another loss for them. However, the result could not have been more the opposite of the expected outcome. The series was assumed to at worst be a 3-1 against the Valiant, but they walked off stage having been completely shut out by the Fuel in a 4-0.

This crushing loss further solidified the LA Valiant as a bottom five team. At the time of the match, Dallas was sitting closer to 10 in the top of the league. If Los Angeles had been able to complete the upset, they most likely would have moved to mid-tier for most.

Player of the Match

Kyle “KSF” Frandanisa was rather consistent with his Graviton Surges in this match. The majority of them caught out multiple members of the Fuel, and allowed for some nice set ups with his teammates.

Seoul Dynasty (7-5)

Los Angeles Valiant Stage 2 Week 5
2018-06-08 / Coutesy of Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment

Because of the Valiant’s decisive loss against the Fuel, it was believed that their match against the Dynasty would go quite similarly. This was not the case, though. The LA Valiant not only did not get 4-0’d, but also brought the whole series down to a tiebreaker map on Oasis.

This surprised everyone, as the Seoul Dynasty are seen as the same level as, if not a step above, the Dallas Fuel, and had 4-0’d them just one week prior. Despite the relatively strong showing by the Valiant, they still left empty handed in terms of wins that week.

Player of the Match

Indy “SPACE” Halpern was, par the course, playing on a different level compared to some of his teammates. On several occasions, he caught more than one member of the Dynasty with his well-placed Self-Destructs. He’s a generally talented player, but truly shined through in this series.

Preview

Chengdu Hunters (6-7)

Los Angeles Valiant Stage 2 Week 5
Courtesy of Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment

The Chengdu Hunters are an anomaly of this season of the Overwatch League. They were the pioneers of the Wrecking Ball-centered anti-GOATS composition, and made it work. However, they still sit at an overall negative win-loss record. There’s no denying their talent, but they’re not the most consistent of teams.

In spite of this, the gap between the Hunters and the Valiant may be too great at this point for Los Angeles to stand a real chance. This will be the final week of Stage 2, and the Valiant are at a season record of 2-11. The improvement has been there, but not in great enough amounts. Of course, due to their performance against the Fuel and then the Dynasty, the exact scoreline is tough to predict.

The LA Valiant could very well put up a massive fight or simply be run over. As it stands, though, they do not yet look strong enough to defeat Chengdu.

Prediction: Hunters win 3-1

Player to Watch

Now no longer on Zarya, Young-seo “KariV” Park is a treat to watch on Zenyatta and other supports. As Min-chul “Izayaki” Kim seems to be struggling lately, KariV is, when needed, able to step in and really get work done.

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Featured image courtesy of the Los Angeles Valiant

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