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Overwatch League 2019 Stage 4, Week 2: Top Plays, Prize Money and Highlights

Theo SalaunContributor IIAugust 5, 2019

Stewart Volland for Blizzard Entertainment

A second week of the Overwatch League's 2-2-2 role lock is in the books, and it's official: We have no idea what is going on. As teams continue moving into uncharted territory, every page of expectations, based on the preceding three stages of Season 2, has to be thrown out.

The roles may seem stable, but the meta is in flux and the league's standings are entirely subject to change. Following last week's introduction to the highly anticipated role lock, the second week of Stage 4 seemed to cement just three certainties: Everything is a mess, Corey is a carry and Erster is an absolute juggernaut.

The prize pool for the season playoffs sits at $3.5 million, and just eight of the league's 20 teams get to compete. Stage 4 is the last chance teams have to joust for placement.

Concurrent with Erster and the Atlanta Reign's emergence as a playoff contender, we break down the most surprising lineup changes, match results and highlights from Stage 4, Week 2.

         

Thursday, August 1

Guangzhou Charge 1-3 London Spitfire

Florida Mayhem 2-3 Washington Justice

Shanghai Dragons 1-2 Toronto Defiant

Los Angeles Valiant 2-3 Seoul Dynasty

            

Friday, August 2

New York Excelsior 3-1 Paris Eternal

Houston Outlaws 1-3 Philadelphia Fusion

Chengdu Hunters 2-3 Los Angeles Gladiators

Guangzhou Charge 3-0 Hangzhou Spark

           

Saturday, August 3

Atlanta Reign 4-0 Paris Eternal

Florida Mayhem 3-0 London Spitfire

Dallas Fuel 1-3 Los Angeles Valiant

Los Angeles Gladiators 2-3 San Francisco Shock

         

Sunday, August 4

Atlanta Reign 3-1 Houston Outlaws

Philadelphia Fusion 3-2 Toronto Defiant

Vancouver Titans 0-4 Washington Justice

Chengdu Hunters 4-0 New York Excelsior

           

Thursday, August 1

Last stage, the Dragons won the Stage Finals while the Defiant went winless. As perfect proof that Stage 4 is an unpredictable chasm of chaos, Toronto made quick work of Shanghai this week.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

✌️ out losing streak. The @TorontoDefiant take the series 2-1! #OWL2019 🔴 https://t.co/U6dIipgQGs https://t.co/7fq9spsCVZ

Thursday also saw Corey carrying, the first Reaper 6K in Overwatch League history and the Spitfire deploying a magical teleported sniper strat.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

Caption this. #OWL2019 Big brain strats from @Spitfire. 🔴 https://t.co/U6dIipgQGs https://t.co/d6ptl5bMrz

           

Friday, August 2

In a comforting reminder of normalcy amid the unrelenting anxiety of unpredictability, the Excelsior returned to their winning ways by outdueling the new-look Eternal.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

With that win, @NYXL has CLINCHED the #OWL2019 Atlantic Division! 🔴 https://t.co/U6dIipgQGs https://t.co/z6tx1GCx3l

In a stark reminder that the ladder of chaos is hard to climb, the well on Ilios claimed a bevy of fallen tributes from the Fusion and Outlaws.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

The Well is pleased with your sacrifice, @Outlaws @Fusion. #OWL2019 🔴 https://t.co/U6dIipgQGs https://t.co/Ooo5pS4iOG

           

Saturday, August 3

Many of us thought that the new role lock meant a resumption of glory for the DPS-inclined Spitfire.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

Which of these teams has benefited the most from 2-2-2? #OWL2019

Many—technically, 92 percent—of us, thought that this rejuvenated, sixth-place Spitfire squad would easily rout the last-place Mayhem.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

@FLMayhem Just in case you were wondering, 92 percent of you chose London to win on League Picks. The other eight percent of you were right! 😉

Instead, the Spitfire got zipped by a Mayhem squad that seems relieved by Gargoyle's substitution for xepheR and sayaplayer's return to Widowmaker.

Elsewhere, Erster erased the Eternal—alerting the league to a new member of the Shimada family.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

A strong showing from @ERSTER_ow and the @ATLReign ends with a 4-0! #OWL2019 🔴 https://t.co/U6dIipgQGs https://t.co/70DUjoeZQJ

            

Sunday, August 4

Sunday solidified the three certainties of life: mess, Corey and Erster. To start, the Reign capitalized on Erster's intimate relationship with the Shimada family, as his Hanzo and Genji prowess propelled them into a victory over the Outlaws.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

💀 @ERSTER_ow IS BACK IN THE BUILDING! #OWL2019 🔴 https://t.co/U6dIipgQGs https://t.co/o91sRcrYm6

Then, mess and Corey were proved in unison. The Justice had just four wins all season, the Titans just one loss. But nothing makes sense in Stage 4, and the 4-19, 19th-place Justice swept the 22-1, first-place Titans. Gido is back in the lineup, the Justice are in form and Corey is a certified carry. The role-lock meta is a mystery.

Overwatch League @overwatchleague

THEY'VE DONE IT!!!! 😯 The @washjustice have handed Vancouver their second loss of the season with a 4-0 VICTORY! #OWL2019 🔴 https://t.co/U6dIipgQGs https://t.co/QGVYI2Nuwr

Oh, and the Excelsior now have as many losses in Stage 4 as they did in the past three stages combined.