With the end of Stage 3 in sight, many teams need to clutch their final games in order to make it into the four-team playoff brackets on Sunday. The Valiant needed to win at least one map against the on-fire Uprising to ensure a win, while Uprising had their undefeated record on the line. Meanwhile, the Shock had one heck of a game against the Mayhem and NYXL once again flexed their muscles against the Fuel.
Miss anything? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered below:
San Francisco Shock vs Florida Mayhem
shock wins, 4-0
For both Anubis and Blizzard World, Mayhem failed to take down Architect or Danteh. With the two DPS players running wild on their Genji and Tracer, respectively, Mayhem couldn’t capitalize on opportune moments. This specifically stood out during a BlizzWorld push where AwesomeGuy’s Reinhardt has a clutch EarthShatter that hit multiple Shock players. It was a moment that should have turned the tide for Florida, but it wasn’t meant to be thanks to a Pulse Bomb from Danteh. That situation happened over and over again, resulting in a quick two maps. Also of note was Nevix’s D.Va; at this point of the match, he hadn’t died even once. (Overall, he only died seven times, only three more than the record of least amount of deaths in a match with London’s Fury.)
The same sort of situation unfolded on Nepal, where the Shock managed to take the map (and the match) within two quick rounds. With the pressure off, Mayhem pushed back on Route 66 thanks to some clutch plays from Sayaplayer’s Widowmaker, but ultimately couldn’t complete the map while the Shock did in the first round, locking the sweep in for the Shock.
Boston Uprising vs Los Angeles Valiant
Uprising wins, 3-2
Despite Agilities’ best efforts to hard carry, the Uprising ultimately couldn’t be denied on Anubis, thanks in part to some stellar play from Mistakes and Striker. BlizzWorld, however, was home of the tanks, where NotE’s D.Va had a devastating impact on the Valiant. NotE’s peel for his supports not only helped to secure
From there, however, the Valiant seemed to stabilize a bit, thanks in part to FaTe and Agilities’ Winston and Pharah, respectively. The latter in particular paved the way to Valiant’s necessary single-map win for the playoffs, as Uprising failed to have a hard counter to the rocket queen. With the skies clear, the Valiant took Nepal. They continued the momentum into Route 66, stopping Boston just before map completion. From there, Space lived up to his name, giving SoOn’s Widowmaker the space needed to make the clutch plays needed to hold off the Uprising and bring on a Map 5.
Oasis was a back and fourth affair, with Striker and Bunny one-upping each other on Tracer and NotE and Space battling it out on D.Va. In the end, however, the former were the victors, with the stall tactics of the Uprising just too much for the Valiant to handle. With no way to fully wipe Uprising off the point multiple times, it was a final body block from NotE onto Space’s D.Va that secured the win for the Uprising.
New York Excelsior vs Dallas Fuel
UPRISING WINS, 3-2
Anubis started out strong for Fuel thanks to Seagull and OGE leading the charge onto the first point, giving Fuel over three and a half minutes to take on second. One Point B, however, JJonak came out to play with his deadly Zenyatta, resulting in a strong hold on the second point. With the first map secured, NYXL’s defense on BlizzWorld was led by Pine’s Widowmaker once again making the big plays. Sabyeolbe, not to be outdone, also pitched in massively on his Tracer, consistently targeting HarryHook’s Mercy to deny clutch Resurrections and healing.
Nepal saw the return of Fuel’s signature Mei+Reaper+Reinhardt combo. The strategy – have Mei block off one side of a point while Reinhardt covers the other and have Reaper deal with whoever dares to trespass. Where it has subdued some teams, it didn’t seem to deter Libero’s Pharah and SBB’s Tracer, who were too quick to the punch for Fuel to deal with effectively.
From there, Route 66 was Pine’s playground on Widowmaker, completely shutting down the Fuel to prevent Dallas from having even one map in the match.
With that, the Valiant lock up their playoff spot, along with NYXL and Uprising. The Gladiators will be the ones in the hot seat with the first game tomorrow, however, going up against the Uprising in the first match of the night. They’ll be followed closely behind by NYXL and Dragons, then Spitfire vs Dynasty.