Saturday, August 24th @ 6:45pm: NYXL
Sunday, August 25th @ 4:45pm: Atlanta Reign
It hasn't been the best time to be an Uprising fan. Sure, Colourhex showed himself to be a human highlight reel last week. Also, Persia performed what may be the play of the year in that backline sneak/Hanzo pick. But by and large, there's nothing like a winless stage to knock the steam right out of your engine. Well, there's one week of matches left. Still time to make something out of nothing. An opportunity to play spoiler, gain some pride, and go out on a high note. Is that too much to ask?
New York Excelsior
Well what do we have here? The overlords of the Overwatch League and all their cocky fans waiting to scrub out the boys in blue, right when they're at their lowest. Or so they'd tell you. Any other time in the history of OWL and you'd be right to be scared. These guys have been a top team since day one. Yes, they gagged in the season end playoffs last year. They haven't won a stage playoffs this year. But they've been in the conversation. Well, no more.
New York is 2-3 in Stage 4, the first time they've ever had a losing record in a stage. In fact, these behemoths of Overwatch had two perfect stages this year. What gives? Well, they were swept by Chengdu and Guangzhou, and lost 3-1 to the Gladiators. Let's not forget they won on Map 5 against Hangzhou. Maybe it has something to do with playing against Chinese teams?
Regardless the reason, here's an opportunity for Boston to show up their perpetual rivals. Remember this season's opener when everyone thought with the turnover in Boston's roster that NY would crush them? That match ended up extremely tight and drove Boston to their only stage playoff appearance this year. We already know that next year's season starts with a Boston/NYXL matchup. Those clowns are already trolling Boston. There's only one thing to do. They may have won the division and punched their ticket for the playoffs, but we know how they'll do there. Let's send them to the playoffs with their heads down. Time to join the pile on. Embarrassed.
In a rather anticlimactic fashion, Boston has to play Atlanta to close out the season (come on OWL - why'd you schedule it like that?). There isn't much to write about here. Atlanta is already locked into the post-season, so there's no spoiler angle in play. There's no Atlanta/Boston rivalry or history. The only interest will be if Boston loses against NY and has a winless stage on the line. I'm drinking too much of the Kool-Aid to entertain that possibility. It'll just be a pointless match. Sad.
Boston has underwhelmed in Stage 4. But, there's been progress. Colourhex has gotten progressively better each game. Stellar showed a world of difference between his debut on the Uprising and last week. The team plays better each week. That reverse sweep was on the table against the Valiant last week! Can that momentum keep up and carry Boston to a win over all of New England's sworn rivals?
For their sake, I sure hope so. Otherwise, it's going to be a long off-season. Even longer if they complete the collapse and drop the last match against Atlanta. I'm sure the internet and all us Uprising fans can be rational going into an off season following a winless stage. Especially on top of all those other issues. You know, rCk going absent the last few games. Aimgod missing for the last few months. Huk's habit of shaking up the roster in the offseason regardless. So Boston better pull it together. Go out on a high note. Show some pride. Because otherwise - it's going to get ugly. The internet will feast, the memes will write themselves, and the saltiness will shake out. Let's not do that.