It’s safe to say that most of us did not see this Grand Finals matchup coming. But maybe we should have. Despite these two teams being the sixth and fifth seed respectively, the writing was on the wall the entire time.
At the Los Angeles Gladiators quarterfinals post game press conference, many players from LAG casually predicted the Philadelphia Fusion to defeat the New York Excelsior. That’s the bottom seed in the OWL playoffs being chose over the NYXL, aka the most dominant team in the Overwatch League. The NYXL did suffer three losses in Stage 4, and an additional one in the Stage 4 finals versus the Los Angeles Valiant. But many chalked those losses up to “sandbagging“.
It did seem like the NYXL took their foot off the gas. This was highlighted in their match versus the Valiant, when Pine repeatedly went for the same flank on Watchpoint: Gibraltar multiple times to no avail. Frankly, it appeared this is how the NYXL treated Stage 4. Once they were locked in as the first overall seed early in the stage, they coasted from there. This was supposed to lead to being better prepared and better rested come league playoffs.
But when the playoffs did come, the NYXL lived up to their former APEX name, LW Blue. They didn’t win a single map in the first series versus the Fusion and then lost on a map 5 in the second series for a swift 0-2 defeat. Just like that, the team that had gone to every stage final and sat atop the standings at 34-6 was bounced from the playoffs and their season was over.
In the new meta, the Fusion just looked better. NeptuNo outplayed his Mercy counterparts in ArK and Anamo. Neither Mano nor Janus looked up to the task versus SADO. Boombox quietly performed in a bigger flex role and rarely made mistakes. Eqo, the most underrated DPS player in the Overwatch League, continued to shine. And Carpe looked like the best player on either team in this series, including JJoNaK. Saebyeolbe looked a lot like just a Tracer one-trick and Libero completely disappeared. Perhaps the biggest surprise was also Philly’s biggest question mark leading into the series. HOTBA, the flex god, played each Overwatch role in the series: DPS, Tank and Support.
In all sports it’s important to get hot at the right time. Often a team seems mediocre or fledgling early in the season, and then in the playoffs they flip a switch. That’s what happened with the Philadelphia Fusion, and they deserve to be in the OWL Grand Finals.
The London Spitfire are a different story. Defeating the NYXL in the Stage 1 Final, the Spitfire were poised early on as a potential favorite to hoist the Overwatch League trophy. But soon after the stage final, things took a turn for London. Some key players were released to other teams and the rest were constantly shuffled between the bench and the starting lineup. This is a downside to signing two full separate teams and combining them to create one roster. This led to a defeat in the Stage 2 semifinals to the Fusion and it only got worse from there.
An injury to star DPS birdring clearly affected his play, and with it the Spitfire’s. Combining that with the continued shuffle of London’s roster led to a 5-5 Stage 3 and a 4-6 Stage 4. Luckily, their strong Stage 1 and Stage 2 records bought them a low seed in the OWL Playoffs. To their credit, the Spitfire’s staff recognized the problem. They released their entire roster, bar the six starters and one reserve player. This allowed the team to focus on the set group that would actually be playing and helped them build a better overall synergy. London have always had the talent, they just haven’t had the teamwork. They had not lived up to their potential.
In the playoffs, London’s full potential was realized. They started out slow, losing 3-0 in their first playoff series versus the Gladiators. But on the following Saturday, London won six consecutive maps to knock LAG out of the playoffs. Their semifinal matchup versus the other OWL Los Angeles team went even better, and they made quick work of the Atlantic Division-winning Valiant 2-0 (3-1, 3-0).
Gesture returned to his dominant form on Winston, aided by the underrated off-tank Fury. Profit was silently consistent as always in his flex role, especially on Brigitte, and birdring returned to his elite form post-injury. Bdosin began taking over games again as Zenyatta and Roadhog again, with NUS proving his name belongs in the best Mercy conversation. You would be hard-pressed to find a weakness in this London squad.
Now, for the Grand Finals prediction. As I said before, the London Spitfire don’t seem to have a chink in their armor. In this meta, the team is an unstoppable machine. The Fusion on the other hand are very streaky. They can get hot, like in Stage 2, and seem like the best team in the world. Other times, Philly seem mid-tier at best. The Fusion are an emotional team and it affects how they play, positively and negatively.
Right now, the Philadelphia Fusion have the hot hand. I think they’ll come out nervous in the first series though, and lose the opener versus London. But then:
Carpe. Also known as (hot take incoming) the best player in the Overwatch League. Bar none. I think he makes a play in the second series that turns the tide and flips the momentum. Philly will ride this momentum all the way to a 2-1 victory and championship.
Pregabalin buy from uk Prediction: Philadelphia Fusion 2-1