The 2020 Overwatch League has been a long road. What started in front of a live audience in New York and Dallas way back in February has now concluded. The four best teams in the league have met online to determine the 2020 Champion of Overwatch League. After blood, sweat, and tears have been shed from all four teams, only one could be crowned the Champion. Emerging from the smoke and ruins of a tense weekend of Overwatch, the San Francisco Shock are now back-to-back Champions.
The first match of the weekend set the stage for what would be some of the closest matches ever. The San Francisco Shock versus the Seoul Dynasty proved that despite a shaky start, the Dynasty deserved to be here. But, the San Francisco Shock had the edge. They proved why they were the number seed taking the first two maps on control and payload. It was on Volskaya that the Dynasty started to push back. And again on Rialto where they paid the Shock in kind for the full hold on Hollywood. Ultimately, in-game 5 the Shock shut it down with a 2-0 win on Busan. That victory for San Francisco sent the Dynasty to the losers’ bracket.
The Philadelphia Fusion’s match against the Shanghai Dragons was not as competitive as the Shock verse Dynasty. The Dragons and the Fusion were both ranked number one in their respective regions for the regular season. But the Dragons came out with a clear advantage over the Fusion. Busan was a 2 – 1 victory in favor of the Shanghai Dragons. But the rest of the series was a steal for the Dragons. They fully held the Fusion on both map 2 in King’s Row and map 3 at Volskaya. In the end, the Dragons send the Fusion to the losers’ bracket to face the Dynasty.
The first match of the semifinals was the match everyone has been waiting to see all season long. The former champs the San Francisco Shock versus the league Darlings, the Shanghai Dragons. It went the distance to a game five setting the Dragons up for a reverse sweep. Both teams ran mirror compositions nearly the entire series. It was Snipers against Snipers, Roadhog and Wreckingballs, and flanking Tracer and Sombra’s. The first two matches, despite going in the Shock’s favor, were down to the wire. But Shanghai turned it around on Volskaya with a quick round 1 and win in round 2. Despite nearly pulling off the reverse sweep, the Shock finishes the win and send the Dragons to the losers bracket. The San Francisco Shock is one step closer to their back-to-back Overwatch League Championship.
The Seoul Dynasty continue their impressive run since the start of the play-offs by sending the Philadelphia Fusion home. Philly’s season unfortunately ends with two complete 3 and 0 sweeps. This after a phenomenal regular season that included only 2 losses is heartbreaking. Meanwhile, the Dynasty then faced off against the Shanghai Dragons. The winner would get the rights to play the San Francisco Shock in the grand finals.
Seoul v Shanghai
Shanghai had the upper hand at the beginning of this series, outplaying the Dynasty at almost every turn. Whether it was the tanks Ji-won “Stand1” Seo on the Roadhog and Jun-woo “Void” Kang on the Sigma. Or Jae-won “LIP” Lee Sombra in the backline, or Min-seong “diem” Bae clicking heads on the Widowmaker. Shanghai had Seoul’s number in the first two matches of the series. However, Joon-yeong “Profit” Park on the side of Seoul carried more than his fair share to make it as competitive as possible. He’s one of their star DPS for a reason and put as much on his back as possible to keep them in the game. Between him and a backline Roadhog courtesy of Jae-hee “Gesture” Hong the Dynasty were able to take a win on King’s Row.
In the second half of the series, both teams continue to play at the top of their games. Seoul mounted a strong defense on Volskaya but the aggression from Diem and Lip won the Dragons point A and C. On defense, Shanghai gave up the first point but held on point B for the win. Seoul responds back on Dorado with a point A hold off the backs of amazing performances by Profit and Fits on the Hanzo and Widowmaker. The Seoul Dynasty steals the win in game five with incredible plays from the whole team, but Profit and Gesture leading their team to dismantle the Shanghai Dragons on the eve of realizing their anime finish to the 2020 season.
The San Francisco Shock were playing to become the leagues first back to back champions in the Overwatch League and truly cement their legacy. The Seoul Dynasty have been reaching for the top since season one, but always fell short. This was their chance to seize glory and create a true dynasty.
San Francisco Shock v Seoul Dynasty
The first round starts with the two titans locked dead even with the first round on Oasis going 99% to 99% into overtime. Every single player on both sides proving they’re championship-caliber players with individual and team plays. But, the Shock eventually pulls ahead and take control of map one 2 – 0. The Shock has a strong attack on King’s Row but the Dynasty mounts a solid defense on point C before giving up the map. On their attack though, the Dynasty is nearly full held but takes a point by the skin of their teeth. Ultimately, it’s not enough to finish the map. The San Francisco Shock goes up 2 to 0 in the series.
A slow and methodical approach helps the Dynasty to finish Hanamura points A and B, but they do so with only 11 seconds in the timebank. The Shocks attack is chaotic and aggressive and they take point A with 4 minutes still on the clock, but the Dynasty hold fast and keep point B, allowing them to take Hanamura. The Dynasty’s attack on Gibraltar is a close game between both sides as Widowmakers and Hanzo’s dominate the feed. Seoul is able to finish the map with sub 30 seconds on the clock. On Seoul’s defense, they pull Profit off the Hanzo and put him on the Genji. They’re able to hold the Shock just before point A and tie up the series 2 – 2.
On map five at Busan, the Shock take a commanding lead with a 0 to 100% first-round take. The Dynasty stands back up and on Profit’s Ashe, they take the Shock to the edge with a 99% to 99% before ANS puts Profit down. The Shock retakes the lead in the series 3 to 2. Dynasty is able to hold the Shock before point C on Hollywood, giving them a win condition to keep the series alive. The Dynasty is nearly full held on point A, but in overtime get the point but it’s not enough. The San Francisco Shock hold the Dynasty and take Hollywood. The San Francisco Shock with the win become back-to-back Overwatch League Champions.
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Feature Image Photo: Robert Paul for Blizzard Entertainment