The Overwatch League has kicked off Stage 2 of Season 2 and DPS were played! With the meta in an unstable fashion between DPS and GOATS, the games have been more exciting than ever this season. Teams like Chengdu have benefited greatly from the change-up of on-screen heroes. Some teams like Fusion have, despite their wins, looked less impressive. Heading into Week 2 of Stage 2, here’s how The Game Haus crew ranked the teams.
(MPD= Map Differential, High is the highest an individual ranked the team, Low is the lowest an individual ranked them, and LW= Last Week’s Power Ranking Position)
1. Vancouver Titans – Record: 8-0 MPD: +22 (High: 1. Low: 2. LW: 1st)
Another week, another 4-0 win for the Vancouver Titans. Balance changes brought Chunghee “Stitch” Lee into the lineup but didn’t provide any relief for the Titans’ opponent. The beat down of the Spark could mean that Vancouver has figured out how to better play around DPS-heavy foes, or it could mean that Hangzhou is a mess right now. Things only heat up from here. The first of two matches against Seoul this stage looms next week. The Outlaws are waiting as well after an extra week to sit back, observe and game plan for the Titans. Can anyone stop the runaway train that is the Vancouver Titans?
– Bradley Long
2. New York Excelsior – Record 9-0 MPD: +23 (High: 2. Low: 3. LW: 2nd)
While the NYXL’s first match against the Fusion was explosive, their match against the Shanghai Dragons left some fans a little worried. Tying up a match against the Dragons is not preferable, especially not for the best team in the league. The NYXL need to work on their adaptability moving forward if they want to succeed, especially right now while the META is so unstable.
– Miranda Rodriguez
3. San Francisco Shock – Record: 6-3 MPD: +13 (High: 1. Low: 3. LW: 3rd)
The Shock didn’t have the toughest schedule this week, and they took care of business by absolutely slaughtering both challengers. Neither the Valiant nor the Charge could keep up with the Shock’s onslaught. The Shock only play one game next week, where they face off (for some reason) against the Charge again.
– Sam Putney
4. Los Angeles Gladiators – Record: 5-4 MPD: +4 (High: 4. Low: 7. LW: 5th)
The Los Angeles Gladiators continued their winning ways, defeating the Shanghai Dragons and Seoul Dynasty. They seem to have finally mastered the 3-3 composition as a team. It does seem that they enjoy being able to run DPS heroes again (cough Lane “Surefour” Roberts cough), and look poised to be able to tango with the best in the league. Next week will see them face off against the Guangzhou Charge and the Los Angeles Valiant. If the Gladiators play like they did in Week 1, they should be looking at a 4-0 start to Stage 2.
– Zach Stenzel
5. Boston Uprising – Record: 6-3 MPD: +5 (High: 4. Low: 9. LW: T8th)
What a week for the Boston Uprising. With an unusual and accidental streak of reverse sweeps (record-breaking, by League standards), the Uprising have managed to win their first set of games in the Stage. With victories over teams many put among the best, the Reign and the Defiant, Boston have proven themselves worthy of being called top-tier competition. This upcoming week brings another challenge, and another shot at victory. As Hexagrams said, you can never truly bet against the Uprising. They’ll always find a way to surprise, and win.
– Mallory McMahon
6. Chengdu Hunters – Record: 5-4 MPD: -2 (High: 5. Low: 10. LW: 7th)
The Hunters claimed back-to-back victories this past weekend, and impressed in the new meta. Star DPS players like Yi “JinMu” Hu have been able to continue flexing onto heroes like Pharah and pump damage and disruption into the other team. With both a 4-0 against Eternal and 3-1 against Justice, the Hunters will continue their fight to dominance in this meta against the Dragons. With both teams unafraid to throw meta-compositions to the wall, it should be an entertaining win for the Hunters.
– Dalton Jewell
7. Philadelphia Fusion – Record: 6-3 MPD: +3 (High: 4. Low: 10. LW: 4th)
The Fusion didn’t have the best start to the second stage. Unsurprisingly, the NYXL clapped the Fusion during their match on Thursday. On Saturday, the Fusion did manage to get a victory over the Florida Mayhem, but they still did not look that great. Fans did not walk away from that match feeling like the Philadelphia Fusion performed at their best. The Fusion are capable of greatness, but it sometimes takes them a while to find their groove. Fans remain hopeful that the Fusion will get it together next week when they face off against the Toronto Defiant and London Spitfire.
– Kate Shepard
8. Seoul Dynasty – Record: 4-4 MPD: +4 (High: 5. Low: 12. LW: 6th)
The Seoul Dynasty lost their only match played this week, but there’s reason to be hopeful. While Chan-hyung “Fissure” Baek’s aggressive play style was disruptive to the rest of the Dynasty, it also lead to some key plays. With an uptick in aggression, especially needed against bunker compositions, the rest of the Dynasty will need to get on the same page to properly support him. We’ve seen how devastating it can be with the Titans, and if the Dynasty can iron out communication then this should be another great stage for them.
– Dalton Jewell
9. Toronto Defiant – Record: 6-3 MPD: +6 (High: 4. Low: 12. LW: T8th)
Despite falling victim to Boston’s relentless second half aggression, the start to Toronto’s Stage 2 looks promising. Performances from players making their debuts impressed and entertained fans. Both Joon-seong “Asher” Choi and newly acquired Jin-ui “im37” Hong each shined in their first action of the newly welcomed Multi-DPS meta. In Week 2 Toronto faces off against the Philadelphia Fusion and Lucas “NotE” Meissner’s Dallas Fuel. With no scheduled matches in Week 1, NotE’s synergy with his new roster will have had some time to develop prior to their match with the Defiant. As for the Fusion, they’ll be hoping to keep their winning streak alive long enough to contend for Stage 2 playoffs. Expect hard-fought matches on all fronts in Week 2.
– Dave Grove
10. London Spitfire – Record 5-4 MPD: +1 (High: 5. Low: 12. LW: 10th)
London rolled into Stage 2 with decisive wins over Florida and Atlanta. The pressure is on to keep the momentum up this week as they face off against the Fusion, who sent them packing in the season opener. If the Spitfire can take back their former glory from last season’s championship rivals, they’ll make a much better case for a playoffs slot than they did last stage.
11. Dallas Fuel – Record: 4-3 MPD: 0 (High: 8. Low: 15. LW: 14th)
It is time for Dallas to show their flexibility. With Hyeong “Effect” Hwang retiring the Fuel lost their trademark Tracer and an individually flexible player. Perhaps Zachary “ZachaREEE” Lombardo will finally be able to play DPS characters and frag-out for the first time in his OWL history. Dallas struggled finding their flow in Stage One, hopefully with the extra week of preparation they will be able to pull out something nobody expects.
– Ethan Cowan-Kazmi
12. Paris Eternal – Record: 4-5 MPD: -8 (High: 9. Low: 16. LW: 17th)
Paris showed that they can beat a weaker team, gaining a 4-0 victory against the Charge. However, their match against the Hunters showed a lot of flaws in Paris’ play style. The Eternal will need to shore up communication and ultimate management heading into Week 2, where they’ll face the Mayhem and Fuel, testing their DPS ability. They should be able to get a win against the changing Mayhem, but the Fuel prove a tough task with their Stage 1 performance. Look for the Eternal to split evenly 1-1 this week.
– Dalton Jewell
13. Shanghai Dragons – Record: 3-6 MPD: -9 (High: 10. Low: 16. LW: 12th)
If anyone is worried about Shanghai after week one; don’t be. The Dragons faced off against a top 3 team in the NYXL, and then Seoul (who by the way dethroned the NYXL in the Stage 1 Playoffs). Pulling a map from both teams (including the tie) should be a positive sign moving forward. Beating a hot-Chengdu team can be a powerful force to drive the Dragons the rest of Stage 2.
– Jacob Renie
14. Guangzhou Charge – Record: 3-6 MPD: -9 (High: 9. Low: 16. LW: 11th)
The Charge had quite the difficult week coming into the stage, and received two 0-4s, putting them dead last in the current stage rankings. This can be largely in part to facing off against a surprisingly competent Paris squad, and playing the Shock, easily one of the top 3 teams in the league. They’re improving with every game, that much is noticeable. However, their stage isn’t getting any easier next week, and the Charge will have a tough time making up ground at all in this Stage.
– Ethan Seftor
15. Hangzhou Spark – Record: 3-5 MPD: -8 (High: 12. Low: 15. LW: 15th)
Hangzhou started off Stage 2 on a shaky note, falling with an 0-4 loss to the reigning Vancouver Titans. Despite the score, they kept the Titans on their toes, putting up a good fight throughout the match. Their schedule doesn’t get much easier from here on out, but the fact that they could keep up against one of the strongest teams in the league could be a good omen. Their upcoming match against the Boston Uprising will prove a challenge, but the Spark have shown that it’s one that they can face.
16. Atlanta Reign- Record: 4-5 MPD: +1 (High: 11. Low: 17. LW: 13th)
After a strong performance in Stage 1, the Atlanta Reign seem to be struggling with roster changes and the meta shift of Stage 2. While there are still moments of glory, more often than not the Reign are facing issues with team cohesion and synergy. With two games this stage against the New York Excelsior quickly approaching, the Reign need to rediscover that synergy fast.
– Garrett “Norcetto” Golden
17. Houston Outlaws – Record: 3-4 MPD: -3 (High: 9. Low: 17. LW: 16th)
Houston didn’t play during Week 1, they also didn’t have any signings in the between stages to improve their roster. However, if Dante “Danteh” Cruz and the Outlaws have managed to work out communication issues and have been practicing hard during the break this could be a fun team to watch and they may even be able to squeak into stage playoffs.
– Steven Zamora
18. Washington Justice – Record: 1-8 MPD: -15 (High: 17. Low: 20. LW: 19th)
Washington looked much improved this week, specifically Corey “Corey” Nigra, who was sharp on Widow. Unfortunately this improvement wasn’t enough to get them a win as they fell 3-1 to the Defiant and Hunters. Currently Washington is competitive enough to make matches interesting but not competitive enough to be a real threat to the status quo of these rankings. With New York and Atlanta on the schedule for this week, don’t expect much to change.
– Brian Marr
19. Florida Mayhem – Record: 1-8 MPD: -15 (High: 16. Low: 20. LW: 20th)
After a big week of changes within the organisation and some drama surrounding some staff, the fans remain unimpressed with the Florida Mayhem. However they were able to create close contests against Philadelphia and London this week, with their communication seemingly much improved. Being able to field your star DPS talent in Jeong-woo “Sayaplayer” Ha consistently has also seen an improvement in their play. Florida has been running with some cheesy compositions this week and if they desire to mimic Chengdu’s success then they better iron out any confidence issues, because they need to believe they can win.
– Sam O’Dwyer
20. Los Angeles Valiant – Record 0-8 MPD: -13 (High: 19. Low: 20. LW: 18th)
Even though the Valiant’s only match of the week was against one of the best teams in the league, that doesn’t excuse their performance. They looked especially weak in this series, where normally they could at least pull out one map win. As long as GOATs is dominant, and the LA Valiant continue to play how they do with questionable ultimate usage and general lack of coordination, they will continue to struggle even against the lower ranked teams in the league.
– Aaron Gerr
Our voters for OWL Power Rankings: Preseason- Bradley Long, Kate Shepard, Felipe Labarca, Darby Joyce, Robert Hanes, Katie Gripne, Ethan Cowan-Kazmi, Mallory McMahon, Dalton Jewell, Zach Stenzel, Garrett “Norcetto” Golden, Ethan Seftor, Miranda Rodriguez, Dave Grove, Sam Putney, Aaron Gerr, Steven Bower, Sam O’Dwyer, Connor Knudsen, Jake Renie, Steven Zamora, Brandon Padilla, Eren “Kenobi” Erkey, Andy Nekrich, Brian Marr