What you missed in Stage 2, Week 1

February 28th
written by Moirai
2018-02-22 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment
2018-02-22 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment

The leaders hold on

NYXL, Spitfire and Outlaws all looked incredibly strong this week, though only the Outlaws were able to come out of the week with two new wins. This is mostly due to the fact that the Stage 1 Champions, London Spitfire, had to go up against the other two leaders of the pack at the time. With Spitfire’s 2-3 loss to the Outlaws, they’ve dropped into fourth place, behind Seoul Dynasty.

NYXL, meanwhile, won against the Mayhem but lost to the Spitfire. Outlaws won against both the Spitfire and the Uprising, resulting in their current second place spot while NYXL still holds on to first. NYXL is 10-2 while Outlaws are 9-3; since the teams have the same map win differential, their game against each other on Saturday, March 3 could end with a new league front-runner emerging in the Outlaws.

2018-02-23 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment
2018-02-23 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment

Underdogs continue to step up

The first perfect week of Stage 2 – where a team went 4-0 in both their matches – goes to the Philadelphia Fusion. Carpe and newly signed EQO jumpstarted the team with their DPS combination, allowing a clean sweep of both Uprising and Mayhem.

EQO’s first week in OWL started off with a bang, averaging 10.91 kills per 10 minutes. Carpe was on top as well, averaging 10.42 kills per ten minutes. EQO had the highest kills per ten minutes ration while Carpe had the fourth highest, behind Effect and newly signed Fuel DPS aKm.

Speaking of the Fuel, the team also had two wins this week, going 3-1 against the Dragons and the Gladiators. Aforementioned Effect and aKm’s DPS was put to good use with their Tracer and Soldier: 76, respectively. Their tank line also stepped up, with Mickie and xQc’s D.Va and Reinhardt giving their DPS line the chance to breathe with some top-tier space-making and general harassment of the enemy DPS line.

2018-02-22 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment
2018-02-22 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment

Down but not out

A note on the photo above: in an act of solidarity, the Florida Mayhem’s usual high-energy and creative walk-in choreography was replaced with a somber walk out. The team then linked together and stood with their heads bowed in a moment of silence. This was in remembrance of the recent mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. The new patches on their jerseys include the logo/mascot of the school. 

The Mayhem had a strong showing against NYXL, taking a map off of the league leaders, but couldn’t turn that momentum into a win, resulting in their 10th loss of the season. They also fell to the Fusion in a clean sweep.

The Dragons had similar woes, still unable to get their first win on the record, though they too had a moment of light in the darkness: they were able to tie Valiant on Hanamura and take a map off of the Fuel.

Finally, the Shock had a rough opening to the stage thanks to being swept by the Gladiators on Wednesday and losing 1-3 against Dynasty on Friday. The Shock, however, are still on top of the Mayhem and the Dragons in the standings.

2018-02-10 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment
2018-02-10 / Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment

Moving forward

The second week of Stage 2 will be a showdown for the top dogs of OWL: it is extremely possible that the fate of first place hangs on the second-to-last match of the week, the Outlaws vs NYXL. If both teams win their first game of the week – against the Fusion and Uprising, respectively – then that game could very well drop NYXL to second, resulting in Outlaws claiming the top spot for the first time. The standings could also come down to map differential – both are at 22 at the moment – so those aforementioned first games are still extremely important.

Those matches aren’t just important to the top dogs, however. Spitfire, Valiant, and Fusion are all currently 8-4; they, too, need to strive for perfection to get above their immediate competition. With Spitfire and Fusion playing each other on Saturday, this week could very well end with that three-way tie broken.

The first match starts at 7:00 pm EST on Wednesday, February 28. You can watch, as always, on OWL’s official Twitch channel.