Someone must have told the teams to turn up the excitement, because week three of the Overwatch League was the best one so far.
All three teams at the top of the standings lost their first match of the season, keeping things close as we pass the halfway point of Stage 1.
Mail Esports’ Matt Porter had a tough time picking between the top two teams this week, as things are incredibly close after week three.
Overwatch League fans saw a week of major upsets as the all-Korean teams lost a match each
1. New York Excelsior +1
New York Excelsior take over from Seoul Dynasty at the top of the rankings after a big win
In case you missed it, New York Excelsior beat Seoul Dynasty this week, and as such, the Koreans in blue have knocked the black and gold tigers off their throne at the top of the Power Rankings.
But, the decision to swap these two powerhouses around wasn’t as easy as it seems. Especially when you consider New York also lost this week, against a much weaker opponent in the Philadelphia Fusion.
Plus, Seoul are still clearly a better team tactically than New York Excelsior, which was shown on multiple occasions throughout their match.
The scary thing is, if the aggression and pure execution for NYXL was enough to beat Dynasty, and they still have areas to improve on, perhaps Excelsior are even stronger than we think right now.
For this week, we’ll put down their loss against Fusion as a momentary lapse while the bulk of their attention was focused on their upcoming match against Dynasty.
2. Seoul Dynasty -1
Seoul Dynasty slip down one spot, but it was still a very close match against New York XL
As mentioned above, the decision to move Seoul Dynasty down to second place was not taken lightly.
They lost against NYXL, and they even lost one map against Shanghai Dragons. Again though, doubtless most of their attention this week would’ve been focused on the match against New York.
It’s possible that Seoul Dynasty are still the best team in the league, and they’ll probably still easily win the Pacific Division.
But, when you compare the upcoming schedules of New York and Seoul, it’s clear that Excelsior have the easier run going towards the end of Stage 1.
It’s going to be close, but it’s entirely possible New York will end the Stage with a better record.
3. London Spitfire =
London Spitfire lost a match this week in surprising fashion, but they remain in third place
It should’ve been a week with a couple of routine wins for London Spitfire before heading into their massive match next week against Seoul Dynasty.
They handily beat San Francisco, although they lost again on Oasis, a problem which will only get worse as time goes on.
However, whether through over-confidence or lack of concentration, they let the game against Boston Uprising slip away from them.
Control maps have been a serious issue for London throughout the season so far, and when the tiebreaking map of a five game series is always going to be Control, it’s scary.
Usually, they can win matches despite losing on Control, but if they let just one other game go, we’re going to get to the point where Spitfire go into tiebreakers thinking they’ve already lost.
Still though, London has a very good team, and probably aren’t too far off New York and Seoul.
4. Los Angeles Valiant =
Los Angeles Valiant recovered from a hard week in week two to pick up an extra couple of wins
After an incredibly tough schedule last week against both New York Excelsior and London Spitfire, Los Angeles Valiant are back on track with two more wins.
Valiant won the battle for Los Angeles for the second time, although the first was in the preseason, so the stakes were a little higher this time.
It was a close match against the Gladiators, and Valiant had to pull off the reverse sweep after heavy defeats in the first two games.
They pulled it off though, and easily got through the Florida Mayhem as expected to finish the week on a very healthy 4-2 record.
Next week’s matches will be very telling, especially the one against the Philadelphia Fusion.
5. Philadelphia Fusion +2
Philadelphia Fusion have performed above expectations since arriving in the league
Once again, the Philadelphia Fusion climb up the Power Rankings, and the strength of their roster is really beginning to shine through.
Knocking off the New York Excelsior is massive, as it’s something not even the mighty Seoul Dynasty could do in week three.
The match against Shanghai Dragons was surprisingly close though, which stops Fusion getting an even higher placement this week.
Fusion were embarrassed by London in week one, but if they can pull off wins against Valiant and Fuel next week, they’ll have Spitfire firmly in their sights.
6. Houston Outlaws =
Houston Outlaws are on a roll right now, but they’ve been playing against fairly easy teams
Houston fans may be disappointed that their fourth 4-0 sweep in a row hasn’t pushed them higher up the Power Rankings.
They’re actually the hottest team in the league in terms of form right now, and their 4-2 record puts them close to the top of the official standings.
However, when you look at the teams they’ve played so far, they’ve only really been able to beat weaker teams.
Outlaws’ loss against Fusion in week one was a surprise at the time, but Philly have proved themselves since then, and Houston didn’t get much done against New York.
Since then, they’ve beaten four teams that have losing records, and three of them (Fuel, Mayhem, and Dragons) are sitting in the bottom three places in the standings.
They’ve got yet another relatively easy game next week against San Francisco, but after that, they’ve got Seoul followed by London.
7. Los Angeles Gladiators -2
The Los Angeles Gladiators are now firmly the second best team in LA after losing to Valiant
Rough one for Los Angeles Gladiators in week three. They were touted as the top Los Angeles based team before the league began, but they haven’t lived up to the hype as time has gone on.
A 2-4 record is a sorry sight, but they’ve got a chance to turn it around next week with some easier games against Mayhem and Uprising.
In fairness, they were looking strong against Valiant until they threw the match away, but they looked completely demoralised after losing the game on Numbani against the Outlaws.
They didn’t pick up a single point for the rest of the match, proving the Gladiators really need to work on their attacking play to compete with the better teams in the league.
Gladiators often put up strong defenses, but it seems they’re often struggling against the current dive meta.
8. Boston Uprising +2
The Boston Uprising pulled off a surprise upset this week, and beat the Dallas Fuel as well
Boston were on a roll this week after a pretty dismal start to their Overwatch League career in weeks one and two.
Beating close rivals in the standings Dallas Fuel is all well and good, but any time you can defeat a team as good as the London Spitfire is a great day.
Uprising have improved from 1-3 to 3-3 in the space of a week, but they’re still sitting just one off the bottom of a very competitive Atlantic Division.
They face both Los Angeles teams next week, and while they may struggle against Valiant, they do have a good chance against Gladiators, who are looking a bit shaky.
9. Dallas Fuel =
Dallas Fuel finally got their first win of the season, but threw away their momentum afterwards
Dallas Fuel fans can breathe a sigh of relief, as they finally picked up their first win of the season this week.
It was against the San Francisco Shock, and they did it pretty easily in 3-0, which is an encouraging sign for their future.
However, the Boston Uprising stopped any momentum they may have been gaining in the tracks though, sending Fuel to a 3-2 defeat in the very next match.
Fuel have found their way a little bit, and are starting to win more maps. The problem is, they’ve got two very tough matches against Fusion and New York next week, and it’s entirely possible they’ll stay down near the bottom of the rankings for a while yet.
10. San Francisco Shock -2
San Francisco Shock were definitely not on form in week three, scoring two heavy defeats
San Francisco Shock didn’t get much done this week, getting just one map win and one draw to six losses.
That win came against London Spitfire on Oasis though, so you shouldn’t put too much thought into that. Even the Shanghai Dragons could probably do that (in fact, we’ll probably see that next week).
Beyond that and the draw against Fuel on Eichenwalde, Shock were outclassed in most areas of play.
They’ll be looking to get things back on track with an important game against Florida Mayhem next week.
11. Florida Mayhem =
It’s tough to see who in the league the Florida Mayhem will be able to beat, other than Dragons
At this point, Florida Mayhem and the Shanghai Dragons are competing for who can get 4-0’d the most times during a season.
They were blown out of the water against Outlaws in one of the most one sided matches of the league so far, but they did at least manage to get a map win against the high-flying Valiant.
The match was already over at that point though, so it’s tough to say if Valiant’s heads were really in it, despite map score being important, as we’re often told.
Mayhem were still able to easily beat the Dragons in week two though, so that should tell you something about Shanghai’s place in the league right now.
12. Shanghai Dragons =
You can expect the Shanghai Dragons to go 0-10 in the first stage of the Overwatch League
In fairness, the Dragons were able to pick up three map wins this week, taking their grand total for the season up to… four.
Shanghai put in a decent effort against Fusion, but still didn’t manage to pick up their first win of the season.
Their map win against Seoul Dynasty was a surprise, but it did nothing to change the outcome of the match in the end.
If you’re a Shanghai Dragons fan, you don’t want to look at next week’s schedule. Maybe check back in a couple of weeks when they play against Dallas Fuel.