Overwatch League 2020 Week 16: Shanghai Dragons Top Plays, May Melee Prize MoneyMay 25, 2020
There have only been eight best-of-seven reverse sweeps in professional sports history. Four in the NHL and one apiece in the MLB, Finnish Elite League, Kontinental Hockey League and Philippine Basketball Association.
If you're willing to count esports, there have now been nine, as the Shanghai Dragons pulled off the seemingly impossible task after going down 0-3 to the Seoul Dynasty in the Grand Finals of the Overwatch League's May Melee Asian bracket.
Shanghai Dragons @ShanghaiDragons
To all the fans who never stopped believing, this win was for you 계속 우리 팀를 믿어주셨던 팬들에게 이 승리를 드립니다 Hit this with a like, RT and a reply with what your favorite part of the series was and we'll be giving out a massive amount of OWL tokens and sprays! https://t.co/HC4eDPZZ6h
The OWL decided to replace its traditional Week 16 schedule and put tens of thousands of dollars on the line in a spicy, single-elimination, regionally split tournament that allowed higher seeds to choose their opponents from the lower-seeded qualifiers.
With hero bans removed, the tournaments resulted in a diverse meta, huge upsets and riveting gameplay. While the league found out how captivating a midseason tournament format could be, the underdog Florida Mayhem found themselves on the precipice of a Cinderella story and the Dragons, clutch as can be, found themselves $65,000 richer.
May Melee Regional Tournament
North American Knockout Stage
Friday, May 22
Vancouver Titans 2-3 Toronto Defiant
Houston Outlaws 1-3 Dallas Fuel
Washington Justice 0-3 Los Angeles Gladiators
Toronto Defiant 0-3 Atlanta Reign
Boston Uprising 2-3 Paris Eternal
Saturday, May 23
Dallas Fuel 1-3 San Francisco Shock
Atlanta Reign 1-3 Florida Mayhem
Los Angeles Gladiators 1-3 Philadelphia Fusion
Paris Eternal 2-3 Los Angeles Valiant
North American Finals Bracket
Sunday, May 24
Los Angeles Valiant 0-3 San Francisco Shock
Philadelphia Fusion 1-3 Florida Mayhem
Florida Mayhem 2-4 San Francisco Shock
Saturday, May 23
Seoul Dynasty 3-0 Hangzhou Spark
Chengdu Hunters 2-3 New York Excelsior
London Spitfire 2-3 Shanghai Dragons
Asian Finals Bracket
Sunday, May 24
Seoul Dynasty 3-2 Guangzhou Charge
New York Excelsior 0-3 Shanghai Dragons
Seoul Dynasty 3-4 Shanghai Dragons
Full schedule and standings available here.
While a deep Shanghai team trotted out numerous lineups, its best six were certainly Fearless, Void, Fleta, LIP, Izayaki and LeeJaeGon. All had tremendous moments, but Fleta started off the weekend with a powerful performance as Echo against the Spitfire, and that form never dropped.
Faced with a top-tier New York team in the semifinals, Fleta's dominance on Echo continued—embodied in his casual duplication of New York's McCree directly into a 180-degree shutdown of the Excelsior's Reaper.
Finally, Fleta and the Dragons made it to the finals for a matchup with Seoul, the team that gave Fleta his chance in the OWL—before sending him off at the start of 2020 in a move that many believed was an indication of the former star now being "washed."
But as the popular saying goes, Fleta is meta, and the iconic carry proved that he still gets dirty with a filthy performance against the Dynasty. Fittingly, he shifted momentum entirely in Shanghai's favor by swapping to his trademark Widowmaker and landing four consecutive headshots to seal a third straight map win and the chance at a Map 7.
The Dragons won $40,000 for the finals victory and another $5,000 for each tournament victory. Now they leave Week 16 with less to prove but more to gain as the brunt of the OWL's $5 million prize purse is still up for grabs.