This weekend Overwatch League had their first Stage Finals. The season is broken down into four Stages leading into an overall playoffs and Grand Finals. Stage One ended with an amazing run by the London Spitfire. All of the teams in the finals had a lot to say as the tournament rolled through a long extended play session on Saturday. Here are some of the take aways from the teams.
NYXL – Post London Spitfire Match
NYXL had their victory over the London Spitfire early in the day. It was a great battle giving NYXL the top spot in the tournament. During the press recap, NYXL expressed which team they wanted to face in the finals. Team members all expressed wanting to face Boston. Boston did not make the playoffs but had a fantastic run leaving them on the edge of making it into the tournament. NYXL is looking forward to matches against them. Our own Taco was on hand and asked the team what the keys to victory were for NYXL. They studied their rivals a lot which led to a strong counter against comps they were not used too. The team was able to adjust.
London – Post-NYXL Match
Despite losing the early game. London was able to come back and battle all the way to the end. Some of the things the team mentioned. Before the finals, London explained that they reviewed the game against NYXL from earlier in the day. They used that to plan for the finals at night if they met them. Going into the 2nd and 3rd place game, they were most worried about Houston. However, they were able to get through both teams. Going into the finals the team had played a long marathon of maps. Their plan was to simply to nap and take some rest. Recharging after the NYXL game was critical for them. London went on to win the Stage One Finals.
Houston – Post London Spitfire Match – Semifinals
Houston spoke about their loss to London in a press conference and explained that London did a solid job of guarding their flanks. They also switched their targets well moving from support to DPS. Houston was able to beat up on London when they went for supports, so London changed tactics on them. The team also said that fatigue and focus were factors in their loss and they learned the lesson to stick together during these long matches.
Taco asked about Stage Two. The team said they overcame a lot of challenges starting off at 0-2. The meta is going to change a lot which will give everyone a fresh start. The lessons they learned about roles and gameplay will carry over well. They were looking forward to seeing how teams will change in Stage Two. The team adapts well and is ready to come back. Their biggest take away was “tenacity” for the team.
London – Post Finals Press Conference
After the final match, London was extremely excited. The press conference was a whirlwind, but the team had a few great insights on the win. The long day wore on them. They really wanted the NYXL win early in the day. Houston they were confident against. Going into the finals, the team was exhausted. They definitely rallied after the first two maps. It led them to compete in the third map and get the win. They came together after that and pushed for the victory.
Taco asked about substitutions. The team said that over stage one they really tried to find the best comps for their six-man teams. It is not just that we swap in players, it is all about strengths and resources. When the starting six are trying something new, often they go to subs for their strengths in that situation.
Overall, the Stage One Finals were a huge day on Saturday. Many of the players expressed playing the finals on Sunday as an option because including both the final matches and playoffs all in one day was a lot. London really came together and showed how dangerous they can be, it will be interesting to see how Stage Two shapes up in the coming weeks.