Defiant- 0 Shock- 3
Despite finishing Stage 1 with a 5-2 record, the third seeded Defiant found themselves once again looking to prove themselves against a tough adversary. The Shock made their way to the playoffs with a 4-3 record and losses only to the Gladiators, Titans and Excelsior. San Francisco’s aggression is what makes them such a feared opponent. With talented players in every role and six more to back them up, Toronto certainly had their hands full.
Busan: Defiant- 1 Shock- 2
The opening map of the series was Busan, Sanctuary. Both teams chose a Rein 3-3 composition, but Toronto opted for Kang-jae “envy” Lee’s Sombra over a D.Va.
Envy’s EMP helped swing the point in Toronto’s favor with San Francisco at 91%. Without a D.Va to properly support the rest of the Defiant, Hyo-bin “ChoiHyoBin” Choi’s D.Va and the rest of the Shock stayed aggressive against envy’s Sombra and the rest of the Defiant to deny them the point.
Toronto looked much stronger and more comfortable on MEKA Base. San Francisco responded with the Defiant at 99% after Matthew “super” DeLisi’s Charge singled out Se-hyeon “Neko” Park and crumbled Toronto’s hopes of a clean victory. Toronto would end up evening the map series 1-1.
In Downtown Busan, Super’s aggression continued. With teammate Jay “sinatraa” Won at his side, the Shock seemed determined to prevent Toronto from capturing a single percentage. With everything they had, Toronto managed to contest, but San Francisco’s firepower and aggression cleared the point to retake the point and take the 1-0 series lead.
King’s Row: Defiant- 0 Shock- 3
Toronto selected the streets of King’s Row for their next engagement. After having failed to slow the Shock on Map 1 despite the presence of envy’s Sombra, Toronto hoped to bounce back on King’s Row.
San Francisco’s ability to generate ultimate charge is the best in the league. Toronto clearly hoped to counter that advantage with envy’s EMPs and hacks. Their lack of a D.Va to mitigate the Shock’s damage output, combined with ChoiHyoBin’s aggression and success against envy’s engagements caused Toronto’s comp to fall short.
On the Shock’s push through the streets of King’s Row, Envy was stunned out of his EMP and that was the last straw. He returned to the D.Va in hopes of reviving their defense. After a big boop from Grant “moth” Espe onto Gyeong-mu “Yakpung” Jo mid Earthshatter, the Shock finished their attack with ease.
On Toronto’s attack, envy remained on DVa. Regardless of the change, the Defiant were full held on King’s Row and dropped to 0-2 in the series.
Horizon Lunar Colony: Defiant- 2 Shock- 3
After coming out of halftime, Toronto began Horizon on attack. With the series on the line, Jae-yoon “Aid” Go subbed in for Joo-seong “RoKy” Park for his first action since Week 3.
Despite the change, Toronto remained with the classic Rein 3-3, but the results remained the same. Fight after fight, Super and Sinatraa dominated the field. With all almost lost for the Defiant, They managed to capture Point A in overtime to avoid the full hold from the Shock. Not only that, but out of nowhere, Toronto rushed to Point B and managed to claim the objective with three minutes to spare.
San Francisco began their attack and found much more success on Point A. That success carried onto Point B as they captured the second objective just as fast as the first. With over double Toronto’s time bank, Toronto once again needed to find their opening to keep the series alive.
After multiple attempts, San Francisco kept Toronto off the objective until Overtime, but managed to finish their defense without losing anything to the Defiant.
With only one tick needed to punch their ticket to the Semifinals, moth’s Symmetra teleported his team to the objective, but Toronto responded accordingly and defended the point while gaining major ultimate advantage.
Despite the advantage, nearly six minutes of defense is a difficult feat for any team. A quadruple kill from Super would seal the match and finish Toronto’s Stage.
It was very obvious the Defiant came into this match with a clear focus on Sombra. In theory, Sombra’s EMP is the most powerful and efficient win condition in the 3-3 meta. The Shock were prepared for this and took the necessary steps to prevent that win condition from even playing a role. San Francisco will move onto the Semifinals against the Philadelphia Fusion, while the Defiant head home to prep for Stage 2 after an impressive Stage 1.
Featured/ Player Images Courtesy of the Overwatch League
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