After nearly a year of waiting, the start of The Overwatch League is finally upon us. Before we can get into the actual season, we are being treated to a taste of what is to come with a host of preseason games to get fans hyped. As part of the build-up, we are going to be covering the preseason matches for both the Overwatch League Atlantic Divison and Pacific Division.
In this preview we will be looking at the following teams in the Atlantic Division:
Check out part 2 of the preview here.
The first game we will be looking at is the all Atlantic clash between the New York Excelsior and Boston Uprising. In this preview, we will be looking at this from Boston’s perspective. Check out part two for the New York lens.
Based out of Boston, Massachusetts, USA. Boston were announced as part of the original seven franchises announced in July 2017. The team is owned by the Kraft Group, the same group that owns the New England Patriots.
Boston is also one of the most multi-cultural teams in the OWL with players from six different nations making up the 10 man roster.
With a mixture of well-known players and up and coming talent, the jury is still out on whether the roster will perform well during season one.
One of the more interesting players on the roster is Tank, Yeong-jin “Gamsu” Noh. Gamsu has previously played competitive League of Legends at the highest level across the world. It remains to be seen whether that will translate well into Overwatch, here at Rivalry we are expecting the class of Gamsu to shine through, no matter the game.
Unfortunately for any Uprising fans, the team is widely considered to be one of the weakest in the League. Whilst it is understandable considering they have a some of the lesser known players in the league, power rankings are all just based on supposition until matches actually begin.
With that being said, it is going to be difficult for the Boston team to pull out an upset over the much favoured New York Excelsior (NYXL) in their first preseason match. On paper, the NYXL team is considered to be one of the best teams in the entire league. Uprising will be hoping to use this series as valuable practice as this is the same match-up for the first round of games starting in January.
The second game we will be looking at is another all Atlantic clash between the Florida Mayhem and Philadelphia Fusion. For this preview we will be looking at the Mayhem team. Check out part two to see the Fusion side of this face-off.
Representing the state of Florida, the Florida Mayhem are owned by Ben Spoont, CEO of Misfits. As a result, it is not surprising that the entire roster is made up of the former Misfits roster.
With a team limit of up to 12 players, most teams in the league have opted to at least 8 players on their roster. Only two teams have chosen not to do that, the LA Gladiators and Florida Mayhem.
The Miami side is boosted by the fact that they have four of the six players that made up the Sweden team that finished third in this year’s Overwatch World Cup. As a result, expectations will be high for the roster, and a lot of responsibility will fall on the shoulders of DPS player Kevyn “TviQ” Linström.
The match-up between Mayhem and Fusion serves to be a good indicator of the strength of both sides. The Mayhem team managed to finish second in EU Contenders when they were still Misfits. As a result, Mayhem is probably favourites heading into the match against Fusion and will be hoping to use the match against Fusion to build some much-needed confidence.
Our third and final game we will be looking at is between Houston Outlaws and Dallas Fuel. In this match-up we will be focusing more on the Outlaws, for the Dallas preview, check out our Pacific Division previews.
The Outlaws will be representing Houston, Texas and are owned by OpTic Gaming CEO, Hector “H3cz” Rodriguez.
Houston was one of the final three teams that were announced on September 20th.
The Outlaws have put together a roster that holds a lot of promise, but so far fans are sceptical as to the promise of this roster (or at least Reddit is).
Unlike some teams, Outlaws do have some existing chemistry. Five of the players have previously played for FNRGFE (check out our thoughts on their interesting logo…). They also have three players that played for Team USA during the Overwatch World Cup 2017.
On paper this team shows a lot of promise, however, games are not played on paper. We here at Rivalry are excited to see how they perform.
Houston v Dallas is probably the fiercest rivalry in the entire Overwatch League. Not only are these two teams fighting it out to be the best team in Texas. Their owners have a long-running rivalry, referred to as e-Classico. Fans of Call of Duty particularly will be aware of the rivalry between OpTic Gaming (Houston) and Team EnvyUs (Dallas).
Rivalries aside, this will be an interesting game that will help set the tone for Houston as they begin their quest to prove the doubters wrong. Houston is in the tougher division and will be hoping to pick up a win to help build confidence heading into league matches.
Dallas probably have a slight upper-hand over Houston, simply because the ex-Envy roster has a history of winning and have been playing together for a while.
Think you know who is going to prevail during preseason?
Let us know on Social Media (links below). We hope everyone is excited for the start of OWL as we are here at Rivalry. The preseason games will serve as both a litmus test for most teams and also a chance to hype up fans ahead of the big kick-off in January.
We hope you enjoyed, and as always keep it Rivalry for more awesome esports content.