It has been a long road, but the final tournament of the Overwatch League regular season is here. The Countdown Cup brings with it a chance at glory for all teams that make up its brackets. A chance at not only some prize money but also bonus wins on a team’s record. Something increasingly important as playoffs loom. The Vancouver Titans are such a team, additional wins could make all the difference for this young squad. Since their rebuild, the season has been filled with ups and downs, joy and pain. These player’s Overwatch League dreams could be made or broken with how they perform in the remainder of the season. The Vancouver Titans Countdown Cup quest begins with a battle against a surging opponent. This is the fight of their lives, and to start, they face an Atlanta Reign squad also looking to prove people wrong.
Vancouver Titans vs Atlanta Reign (8/7)
The last time these two teams faced off the now-departed King of the Reign, Andrej “BabyBay” Francisty established his dominance over the Titans. Leading the team to a dominant 3-0 victory for the firebirds. Since then he has left the team to pursue a career in Valorant with FaZe Clan. In his stead, the team have most commonly called on last season’s standout Joon “Erster” Jeong to play alongside Kim “Edison” Tae-Hoon. This duo has led the team to some rather respectable results, going 3-1 in the qualifiers. They have also bolstered their roster with two exciting pickups from the contender’s scene in Garret “Saucy” Roland and Seunghyun “Lr1s” Kim. These new signings, plus a strong desire to prove themselves without BabyBay have the team looking strong entering the Countdown Cup.
To be blunt, the current meta is one of the best for the Reign. Double Shield/ Orisa Sigma is the comp on which the Reign have been the most dominant all season. Blake “Gator” Scott and Xander “Hawk” Domecq have nearly perfected this duo, with perfectly timed halt combos being incredibly impactful. The team just have a lock on how to play around this robust composition. It allows Dragonblades to be built rapidly, and for Ashe’s dynamite to achieve maximum impact nearly every time it is thrown out. Making the Reign a particularly scary team in this current meta. The only weakness that could come through is if they have to play off-meta. As a Winston/Zarya focused dive has shown dominance on certain maps. The switch could throw the Reign off balance and lead to openings that the Titans could capitalize on.
Bring on the Monsters
Prior to week 26, it would have been very easy to predict a swift sweep in favor of the Reign. However in the final week of qualifiers, when the shackles of Hero Pools were removed, the Titans finally woke up. Nearly reverse sweeping their Canadian rivals the Toronto Defiant before sweeping the Boston Uprising in rather dominant fashion. A big key to their resurgence was a few players leveling up their game in a major way. Dalton “Dalton” Bennyhoff and Carson “CarCar” First really stepped it up this past week. With CarCar having a major impact with some fantastic Brigette play, and Dalton showing massive improvement on the Genji, a role which he had received notable criticism on in weeks past.
If the team can keep up their momentum and level of play then this game could be closer than most imagine. DPS has always been the Titans greatest strength, and with the rest of the team showing improvement this past week, they may stand a chance of an upset. To do so they will need to come out on top of the DPS battle and to at least keep the rest of the team in check. This is a key aspect to keep an eye on outside of DPS is the tank matchup. As previously stated Gator and Hawk are pretty good at Orisa/Sigma, so taking them out of the equation should be a top priority.
Who Moves Forward?
As it is with Overwatch, this game could all come down to simply which team has the superior teamwork. When the Reign play this comp they are frequently like a well-oiled machine, whereas the Titans are still at times struggling to bring it all together. Individually the matchup is close, with each player stacking up reasonably well against their opposing number. However, at this time, Gator is looking like the stronger option at Main Tank over Shredlock. Which in a likely mirror Orisa matchup, gives the Reign a noticeable edge.
Prediction: Reign 3-2 Titans
Follow Ethan on Twitter @EthanButler for all your Vancouver Titans, Overwatch League, Valorant and Esports needs.
If you would like to see more, don’t forget to visit TheGameHaus.com