Philadelphia Fusion (7-3) vs. Toronto Defiant (6-4)
- Su-min “SADO” Kim
- Gael “Poko” Gouzerch
- Josh “eqo” Corona
- Jae-hyeok “Carpe” Lee
- Isaac “BoomBox” Charles
- Alberto “neptuNo” González
Philadelphia Wins 3-1
The Fusion did not have a great start to the second stage. Going into this match, many predicted that the Toronto Defiant would come out on top. Much to the pleasant surprise of their fans, the Fusion managed to pull out an impressive 3-1 win over one of the top expansion teams.
Busan: Philadelphia 2-0 Toronto
Control maps usually do not go well for the Philadelphia Fusion, but not this time. The Fusion started strong on Busan. BoomBox broke out his famous Moira on Downtown, and it worked spectacularly for Philly. The Fusion were able to hold down the point for quite some time, with the Defiant only able to flip the point in their favor during overtime and once the Fusion had swapped back onto GOATS. For a moment, it seemed like the Fusion would be unable to recap the point. Kang-jae “envy” Lee landed a massive self-destruct that kept the Fusion at bay for quite some time. Then Poko came in and got a clutch pick on Gyeong-mu “Yakpung” Jo. This caused envy to panic and set off a self-destruct that got no one while Carpe and Boombox took out the rest of the Defiant.
On MEKA Base, things went pretty similarly. The Fusion dominated once again, but the Defiant did manage to gain control of the point when it was only around 70 percent. One fight was all it took with the help of a graviton surge from Carpe that allowed the Fusion to retake the point. Envy was a nuisance on Sombra and managed to take the point back for the Defiant. Even with a massive EMP, Toronto was not able to follow up with any kills on the Fusion. This allowed Poko to take out Joo-seong “RoKy” Park with a self-destruct and the rest was clean up duty. The Philadelphia Fusion took Busan 2-0.
Paris: Philadelphia 3-4 Toronto
Paris was a mess of a series for the Philadelphia Fusion. The Toronto Defiant were able to push quickly through the Fusion’s defenses after they got a key pick on SADO on Point A. Although the Fusion managed to steamroll through the Defiant when it came their time to attack, their second attempt was confusing to watch. Constantly swapping on and off heroes, the Fusion were scared of Jin-ui “im37” Hong’s Widowmaker. Finally deciding on a double-sniper composition, the Fusion finally made their way out of spawn and took Point A. Unfortunately, the Defiant would shut down any attempt at a team fight from there on out. Carpe would end up feeding envy a delicious graviton surge, and this allowed the Defiant to take Paris with a 3-4 victory.
Blizzard World: Philadelphia 3-2 Toronto
On Blizzard World, the Fusion were determined to turn things back in their favor. Although Toronto managed to quickly cap Point A, the Fusion held the Defiant until overtime on Point B. Despite Boombox’s attempt to maintain the point with transcendence, the Fusion made the smart decision to back up and reset. This allowed them to regain their focus and they managed to hold the Defiant just shy of Point C. When it came time to attack, the Fusion rushed through Point A. Poko was also incredibly hungry at this point, and he ate envy’s graviton surge which allowed the Fusion to roll right on through the rest of the Defiant’s defenses. The Philadelphia Fusion would win Blizzard World 3-2.
Rialto: Philadelphia 3-2 Toronto
Rialto is one of the Fusion’s better maps. However, the Defiant still managed to give the Fusion trouble. Toronto was able to push through Point A with ease after getting a key pick on eqo. Things looked grim for the Fusion once Toronto pushed the payload through Point B. However, Philly regained control after YakPung whiffed his earth shatter. With little time left, the Defiant tried to go behind the Fusion to get back onto the payload. However, Carpe was waiting for them, and he managed to grav the Defiant off the point when the clock hit overtime.
The Fusion did not have to push the payload very far; knowing this, they decided to try out a triple DPS composition with Poko on Soldier: 76. The Defiant were not prepared for this. After their Baptiste and Bastion composition failed, the Defiant foolishly decided to foolishly focus on Poko. On Pharah, Seung-hyun “Ivy” Lee would end up solo-ulting Poko as he came up the stairs on the main bridge. After Ivy was taken out by SADO, Carpe threw out his dragonstrike and took out the Defiant. This momentum would propel the Fusion through the Defiant’s defenses on Point B. Carpe, SADO, and neptuNo would aggressively hold the Defiant at spawn, allowing the Fusion to push the payload to the completion of the map. The Fusion would win Rialto 3-2.
Coming into this match, fans were worried that the Fusion would not be able to take on the Defiant. With how shaky Philly looked against both the NYXL and Florida Mayhem, fans had every right to be concerned about this match. The Toronto Defiant are considered to be one of the top expansion teams, but their lack of coordination with ultimates cost them dearly in the end. Other than a few questionable ultimates last night, the Fusion looked much stronger. The Fusion’s next match is against the London Spitfire. The last time Philly faced off against the London Spitfire they ended up beating the grand champions. However, the Spitfire were struggling to figure out GOATS at that time. Now that the meta has shifted, this match will probably end up being more of a challenge for the Fusion. So long as they continue to keep up the good work with their communication, the Fusion should be able to go toe-to-toe with the Spitfire.
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