It’s been a long weekend of tense matches, but the Overwatch League’s play-in matches have finally produced three winners who will advance to the official playoffs bracket.
The San Francisco Shock, Washington Justice, and Philadelphia Fusion all fought their way to the top during this weekend’s games. They’ll be joining the five higher-seeded teams that already earned a spot in the double-elimination playoffs bracket, which begins on Sept. 21.
Overnight, the Philadelphia Fusion clawed their way through two opponents to claim the final playoffs slot in the East Region. An initial play-in match against the Hangzhou Spark ended in a 3-1 win, while a much more difficult throwdown with the Seoul Dynasty also resulted in a 3-1 victory. Philadelphia joins the Shanghai Dragons and Chengdu Hunters as the East Region representatives in the playoff bracket.
Back in the West Region, last year’s champions looked for an opportunity to repeat their success. The San Francisco Shock toppled the Toronto Defiant in a 3-0 sweep. Despite the best efforts of DPS Jeong “Heesu” Hee-su, who impressed fans yesterday during the initial play-in matches, the Shock’s coordination outpaced Toronto’s talent.
Many of the play-in matches were clean sweeps, but the Houston Outlaws and Washington Justice took the fight for the final playoffs slot all the way to the bitter end. Houston had a lead by the halfway point of the series thanks to impressive support line play, but Washington’s DPS line took it into high gear to close out the match.
In a tense map five scenario, rookie DPS Kim “Assassin” Sung-won brought the heat alongside perpetual carry Jang “Decay” Gui-un. The Outlaws couldn’t stand up to the constant assault from the Justice, and Washington clutched it out in a 3-2 throwdown.
These three victors will join the Shanghai Dragons, Dallas Fuel, Chengdu Hunters, Los Angeles Gladiators, and Atlanta Reign in the double-elimination playoffs bracket. All of the West Region teams will travel to Hawaii to compete with their East Region counterparts on the lowest possible ping.