It has been about 6 months since the first season of the Overwatch League kicked off, and only one week is left until the season’s grand finale.
Stage 4 of the first season of the OWL will end this week, and the Title Matches will be held on June 17th. Also, the top teams in each division and the top four teams will move on to the playoffs which will be held from July 11th to July 21st.
The 5th week of Stage 4 Season 1 will finally determine the teams that will advance to the Title Matches and the playoffs. Which teams have a better chance of winning the season, and which teams could do better at the moment?
■ Title Matches - LAV secured its place, and the competition for the remaining three places is still ongoing.
The Title Matches are only a week away from now. First, the LA Valiant will be playing in the Title Matches, regardless of if they win or lose the rest of the matches. The LAV has won all 8 out of 8 matches so far, and has three more wins than Dallas, Philadelphia, and Houston. Even if LAV loses all remaining matches, the team will at least be in third place.
The LA Gladiators, another team from Los Angeles, is in second place next to LAV with 7 wins and 1 loss. There is a chance that the LAG might not make it. If the team loses with big score differences in the two remaining matches this week, plus the NYXL get one win, and two teams out of the three teams that have 5 wins (Dallas, Philadelphia, and Houston) get two wins with big score differences, the LAG might not make it to the Title Matches.
Fortunately for LAG, this is unlikely to happen. The LAG only needs to get one more win to make it to the Title Matches, and the remaining matches are against the Shanghai Dragons and the Seoul Dynasty, the teams that are currently in the lower rankings in the OWL.
5 teams, from NYXL (3rd place) to SFShock (7th place) are fiercely competing for the remaining two places in the Title Matches. New York is up against Boston and Houston this week. New York has the most points (+16) in Stage 4, and needs only one more win to secure its place for the Title Matches.
The lowest points that New York can have is 13, which could happen if the team gets one win and one loss this week. This is still higher than the most points that Philadelphia can get, so there is little chance that New York will not make it to the Title Matches.
The worst possible case that can happen to New York is if New York loses in both of the two matches this week, and two out of the three teams that have 5 wins get two wins. In this case, New York won’t make it to the Title Matches.
We are unsure of how the matches among Dallas (4th place, 5 points), Philadelphia (5th place, 4 points), and Houston (6th place, 3 points) will turn out. Houston is up against New York and Philadelphia this week, and the matches will likely to determine which teams will be playing in the Title Matches.
Dallas will be playing against Seoul and LAV this week. Although Dallas has been a whole different team in Stage 4, the team has never won against Seoul in this season and LAV is by far the best team in Stage 4. Dallas is in 4th place, but the gap between Dallas and the 5th and 6th place teams is very small.
Philadelphia is up against Houston and London, and Houston will have to play against New York after Philadelphia. It seems like the path towards victory will not be rough for Philadelphia, since London is not performing very well in Stage 4 and Philadelphia has already defeated Houston in Stage 2 and 3.
The San Francisco Shock is also in the running for the Title Matches. However, what San Francisco needs most is luck. To make it to the Title Matches, San Francisco must defeat LAV and the Shanghai Dragons with big score differences, and the other two teams must not have two wins. However, LAV is not planning to lose this week. The match against LAV on June 13th will determine the fate of the San Francisco Shock.
■ Playoffs - Four teams competing for the remaining two seats
Most of the teams that will move on to the playoffs have been determined, so it is very unlikely that the underperforming teams would make a comeback at the last minute. There are only two seats left for the playoffs at the moment.
The top teams from each division are already determined. The New York Excelsior (33 wins and 5 losses; 84 points) is the top team in the Atlantic Division, and the LA Valiant (22 wins and 12 losses; 36 points) is the top team in the Pacific Division.
They do not need anymore wins from the remaining matches, and it seems like New York is saving its energy for the playoffs.
Another team that secured its place in the playoffs is the Boston Uprising, which has 24 wins and 14 losses/22 points at the moment. Boston already has three more wins than Houston and Seoul do, and will still make it to the playoffs even if the team loses all of the remaining matches. The London Spitfire (23 wins and 15 losses; 31 points) also has a good chance of moving on to the playoffs, since they only need to win one more game to have the highest points that Houston can have.
Teams from 5th place (LAG) to 8th place (Seoul Dynasty) must compete for the remaining two seats in the playoffs. The teams that have the upper hand are LAG and Philadelphia. If they can get at least one win, they will be in the top six teams regardless of the results of the other teams’ matches.
If Houston and Seoul can get 23 wins by winning two more matches this week, then they might have a chance at making it to the playoffs. If they can get two wins with big score differences and LAG and Philadelphia loses two times, they might have a chance. Unfortunately, Houston has to play against Philadelphia, and Seoul has to play against LAG.
Who will make it to the playoffs and to the Title Matches; who will be the final winner of Stage 4? Let us see how the remaining matches go and soon we will know which teams will move on to the next stage.
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