Despite facing a loss against the Los Angeles Gladiators, the Toronto Defiant showed signs of life. With a decisive map win in round one, the Defiant are slowly rising among the lower tier teams in the League. It should be stated that, of these lower-tier teams, the Defiant have one of the hardest schedules this month. In facing every California based team, Toronto are against some stiff competition, including last year’s reigning champions. To take a map off of a rather dominant Gladiators shows that they’re able to adapt, and able to compete among the best.
This weekend, they look to continue that momentum against the ever imposing San Francisco Shock. With only two losses in the season so far, the Shock are facing easier opponents on the East Coast. Though their previously impenetrable defense has since seen some wear, the Shock are still a fearsome opponent. Even without the guidance of reigning MVP Jay “sinatraa” Won, the Shock swept the Houston Outlaws decisively. It’ll take nothing less than a miracle for the Defiant to see victory at the end of this faceoff.
San Francisco Shock (6-2), May 10th
Hero bans this week certainly don’t play into the Shock’s favor, with Reinhardt once again out of the circuit. However, the damage bans are something for Defiant fans to worry about. With Ashe out of rotation, it’ll be harder for Lane “Surefour” Roberts to find leverage over the enemy team. There’s hope in Andreas “Logix” Berghmans, known best for his high skill Tracer and Widowmaker play. As the starter when it comes to control maps, Logix managed to outplay the Gladiators and secure a win for Toronto last weekend. If he can keep up the pace and find ways to out damage Nam-joo “Striker” Kwon, Toronto could see some victories.
The main threat comes in the form of the Shock’s tank line. With Myeong-hwan “smurf” Yoo and Hyo-bin “ChoiHyoBin” Choi leading their team into the fray, Adam “Beast” Denton and former Shock player Andreas “Nevix” Karlsson need to play their best to protect their team. Defiant fans were also treated to the return of flex support Joo-seong “RoKy” Park last weekend, in lieu of Kristian “Kellex” Kellar’s retirement. If RoKy can keep up the pace alongside support superstar Young-seo “KariV” Park, this team could prevent a full sweep. The odds, however, aren’t exactly in their favor.
PREDICTION: Shock wins, 3-0
Player to Watch: RokY and Kruise
— Toronto Defiant 🖤 #RiseTogether (@TorontoDefiant) May 2, 2020
With the loss of Kellex comes the arrival of British main support Harrison “Kruise” Pond. Formerly of the Paris Eternal, fans will remember his unique and high skill Lucio play, as well as his top-notch Baptiste play. Since Kruise didn’t make his debut last weekend, it’s unsure when he’ll officially join the team. Because of that, both he and RoKy share the spotlight when it comes to players to keep an eye on. RoKy certainly impressed with his big debut, and Toronto fans should be proud of his display. Alternatively, it would be fantastic to see Kruise return to the main event. Both support players are on everyone’s radar, and the support duo Toronto chooses to run will certainly be something worth watching.
Featured Image Courtesy of Ben Pursell for Blizzard Entertainment.
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