Reign- 0 Gladiators- 4
Los Angeles entered this game with less of a focus on the overall standings and more of a focus on regaining their dominating 2018 form. Communication issues had plagued the team since Week 1 without a clear shot caller present for the Gladiators. A meta shift could do wonders for this team in Stage 2 but for now, the Reign came to town looking to continue their march to a Stage 1 playoff berth.
Busan: Reign- 0 Gladiators- 2
Beginning on Busan, the Gladiators would open up Meka Base with the standard Reinhardt 3-3 composition. Chang-hoon “rOar” Gye helped silence his critics with a victorious duel against Atlanta’s main tank Hyun-jun “Pokpo” Park to claim the point. Atlanta exhausted their ultimates to retake control, but a disjointed Graviton Surge, Self Destruct and Earthshatter combo was enough for the Gladiators to win the fight and claim Meka Base for themselves.
On Sanctuary the comps stayed the same and Los Angeles continued to aggressively claim space on the point. With multiple ultimates committed from Atlanta and Los Angeles in control, the remaining Gladiators showed enormous resilience and pushed back Atlanta’s attack to stagger the squad and quickly claim the map 100-0.
King’s Row: Reign- 3 Gladiators- 4
The Gladiators looked fluid and in control on Busan. They stifled Pokpo’s aggression and allowed their frontline to control the tempo of the map. On King’s Row, LA attacked first. A precision assassination from Jonas “Shaz” Suovaara deleted his Zenyatta counterpart Steven “Kodak” Rosenberger to allow a speedy capture of point A. After pushing through streets with only a Graviton Surge committed, the Gladiators were finally stalled with just meters to go before completion. Despite a massive Earthshatter from Pokpo, Shaz’s Transcendence and Benjamin “BigGoose” Isohanni’s Sound barrier paired perfectly to keep LA standing upright with all three points on the board.
On defense, the home team once again looked stronger than their opponents on point A. Despite a two minute fight on the point, rOar’s Earthshatter closed up shop and helped push the Reign back for a regroup. Several whiffed ultimates from Atlanta slowed their assault. Jun-woo “Void” Kang ate two Graviton Surges before Los Angeles was forced to surrender the point. As Atlanta pushed to match LA’s score, Daniel “dafran” Francesca singled out Shaz with a Graviton Surge and eliminated the Zenyatta. This broke the Gladiators hold and Atlanta claimed the final point in overtime.
With Atlanta’s overtime capture, LA’s attack only required one tick for victory. They easily claimed the point in short order to go up 2-0 on the Reign.
Temple of Anubis: Reign- 1 Gladiators- 2
As Los Angeles entered Anubis on attack, Ilya “NLaaeR” Koppalov joined Atlanta an defense for his widowmaker and Joon “Erster” Jeong’s Junkrat. Last week, this pairing with Pokpo’s Orisa was devastating for the Paris Eternal. LA wasn’t fooled and engaged with an interesting dive composition to quickly close the gap with the Reign. On point B, Gui-un “Decay” Jang put his Genji abilities on display, catching Dusttin “Dogman” Bowerman, Petja “Masaa” Kantanen and Erster to capture point B with over four minutes in the time bank.
Atlanta also quickly capped point A behind their standard 3-3 comp, but LA found much more stability defending point B. Roar’s improved survivability immensely boosted LA’s overall performance. Several key eliminations off of multiple impressive Earthshatters broke every assault from the Reign. The Gladiators started out hot and kept their momentum to claim the series without even needing a fourth map.
Rialto: Reign- 0 Gladiators- 3
With the series in hand, the teams met one final time on Rialto. Once again starting on attack, Los Angeles continued with their standard 3-3 composition. The first corner proved to be an opportunistic choke for Atlanta, as the Reign slowed LA for a large majority of their push. With 30 seconds remaining, the Gladiators were able to win the fight and reach the cart to keep their chances of a clean sweep alive.
LA cruised across the second bridge of Rialto and easily reached their next checkpoint. With 17 seconds remaining in the time bank, they avoided overtime and once again finished the map with another completed map.
On defense, a quick boop from BigGoose sent Pokpo swimming, but the second attempted boop from the Goose was sought out by Masaa and forced the swooping Lucio back with the rest of his team. Despite giving up ground, LA’s ultimate usage remained potent compared to Atlanta’s disjointed usage. After things looked grim for the Gladiators defense, another Goose boop on Pokpo swung the fight for LA and closed out the 4-0 victory over the once surging Atlanta Reign.
Dafran’s final wasted Graviton Surge on his defense of Rialto was a perfect representation of Atlanta’s performance today. Many of their pushes seemed disconnected and easily countered by the improved synergy from the Gladiators. With their communication issues fading, the Gladiators secured an impressive win over a team competing for top seeding in the Stage 1 playoffs.
Featured/ Player Images Courtesy of the Overwatch League
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