London Spitfire vs Los Angeles Gladiators: Esports Betting Analysis @ Overwatch League Season 1

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Introduction

The Overwatch league is a push into establishing a structured esports league for Overwatch. Blizzard first announced the Overwatch League at Blizzcon 2016 and followed it up with almost a year of planning. The gap left in Overwatch esports during this time left a lot of dismayed fans. But the community’s response to the Opening day of Overwatch League has been nothing short of impressive. With over 400,000 fans tuning into Twitch for the first day, one can definitely call the League a success.

The Overwatch League consists of twelve teams in its first season. Slated for expansion in subsequent seasons, the League bears a strong tilt towards North American teams. There are nine teams from North America, One from Europe, One from South Korea and finally a Chinese team from Shanghai to finish the lineup. Each team is allowed a maximum of twelve players, with teams being allowed to substitute players after each map. The Overwatch League has seen investments from several non-endemic to esports investors such as the Kroenke family, Robert Kraft, Hersh Interactive amongst others. At the same time, we have some well-known esports organizations involved in the regular handling of the teams. EnVyUs, Misfits, Immortals, and Cloud9 are some of the most well-known esports organizations with rosters in multiple titles.

We are now in the Season 1 playoffs for the Overwatch league. There are only six teams remaining and they will compete against each other starting on July 11th. The six teams are Boston Uprising, London Spitfire, New York Excelsior, Philadelphia Fusion, Los angeles Valiant and Los Angeles Gladiators. These six teams will play in several match series. Each series comprises of multiple maps as we decide which team is the best.

You can check out more information on the official website at Overwatchleague.com.

Format

Credit to Liquipedia

Regular Season – January 10th – June 16th, 2018

  • Matches in the Atlantic and Pacific Divisions will play out live from the Blizzard Arena each Wednesday through Saturday. Though the season is divided into four stages, wins and losses will count towards teams’ full-season records and all-important seeding for the postseason. On the last Saturday of each stage, the top teams will compete for hefty bonuses and the title of stage winner.
    • Stage 1 – January 10th – February 10th, 2018 [2]
    • Stage 2 – February 21st – March 24th, 2018
    • Stage 3 – April 4th – May 5th, 2018
    • Stage 4 – May 16th – June 16th, 2018
  • All matches in the Regular Season will consist of four-map sets
  • Each Stage of the Regular Season will have its own 8 map pool.
  • The top team in each Division, and the next top 4 finishers from the entire league, advance to the Championship Playoffs in July.

London Spitfire vs Los Angeles Gladiators

London Spitfire

London Spitfire Roster:

  • Birdring
  • Profit
  • Fury
  • Gesture
  • Closer
  • Bdosin
  • NUS

The London Spitfire is owned by one of the most well-known esports organisations. Owned by Jack Etienne of Cloud9, London Spitfire has a great backend staff working to ensure the best performance by the players.

London Spitfire started the Overwatch league with one of the strongest teams on paper. They had the crux of GC Busan and Kongdoo Panthera, two of the strongest teams in the Korean region. These teams had managed to defeat Korean giants such as Lunatic Hai in the past and were seen as better in form than them. They had 12 players, which is the upper limit for a team at the start. This was in stark contrast to the rest of the teams which had less number of players, some even competing with just 6 players.

The DPS players on the team are Birdring and Profit. These two youngsters dominated the scene for the first two season, especially buoyed by their coordination with Gesture. The two DPS players were able to counter any opponent lineup simply cause of the way they can change heroes. Their wide hero pool definitely helped the team rise to prominence in the early parts. They were strong during Stage 1 playoffs to bring home the victory for the London Spitfire. Quickly ensuing a huge fan base partly because of their ‘cute’ factor, Birdring and Profit were the stars of OWL stage 1.

But their performance cannot be complete without mentioning Gesture. The London Spitfire team had Fissure as the best tank player on the team, however Gesture had a greater coordination with the team. This was the sole reason for Fissure remaining on the bench. Also, the London Spitfire management probably did not want to tinker with a working formula. That being said, the London Spitfire suffered from an inexplicable loss of form as we saw them in the Stage 2 Playoffs. The reasons for this loss of form can be varied, but the loss of their coach and certain players from the team definitely had an impact.

The supports on the team are not really superstar players, but they have been extremely consistent at a very high level. Maintaining one’s performance at such a high level is extremely difficult for any player. The Overwatch league is the pinnacle of the skill cap for the players and Nus and Closer are two of the most consistent players.

Los Angeles Gladiators

Los Angeles Gladiators Roster:

  • Surefour
  • Hydration
  • Asher
  • Fissure
  • Bischu
  • Iremix
  • Shaz
  • Void
  • Silkthread
  • BigGoose

The Los Angeles Gladiators is owned by Kroenke Brothers. This is probably their first investment into esports, a growing, and rapidly rising industry. The Los Angeles Gladiators team has some really well-known Overwatch stars on their roster. They are one of the two teams based off Los Angeles.

 


Despite having some really strong members on their roster, the Gladiators were not able to rise to the occasion during Stage 1. Fortunately for them, there were teams such as Dallas FUel, Florida Mayhem below them in the rankings. The Gladiators had the individual skill level, but they lacked a good leadership amongst the team.

The biggest change for the team came when Fissure joined the team from London Spitfire. The Spitfire probably viewed the Gladiators as a non-contender and they decided to trade Fissure to the team. However, immediately upon arriving Fissure was quick to take it upon him to reform the team. He spoke to the Gladiators GM and ensured that the team was quick to reform its ways. The results speak for themselves as the Gladiators are one of the strongest teams since then.

The Gladiators always had a strong DPS lineup in Surefour, Asher, and Hydration. The three players represent a different class of DPS and as soon as Fissure joined the team, we also witnessed a big boost in Surefour’s performance. The two factors combined helped the team to rise through the leaderboards. Soon they were challenging and even defeating the best teams in the league.

The tank play for Gladiators includes Fissure and is obviously the backbone of this team. It is not limited to their performance in the server, but Fissure is a great In Game Leader. His mid-round calls to change heroes and certain playstyles have helped the Gladiators to win crucial matches. Ofcourse Fissure is never shy of boasting and taking credit ( and rightfully so).

Shaz was one of the players comparable to JJonak of NYXL cause of his Zenyatta performance. The young player has some really strong right click aim which helped the Gladiators take down one opponent even before the team fight began. Of course, this helped them win team fights, sometimes, even at an ultimate disadvantage.

Prediction

The London Spitfire team has barely made an impact in their last two stages. They finished with just 9 wins over the course of the last two stages, which is the worst when compared to all the rest of the teams. The change in their coaching staff and limited roster for the Season playoffs is going to hurt them the most. They have just six players right now and that is bound to come into effect as we proceed deeper in the playoffs. The first quarterfinal is a BO3 series with each game featuring 5 maximum potential maps. This definitely puts the onus of performing better on the team with the most endurance.

London Spitfire might be a great team when it comes to their individual performance and their team coordination. But they have not really adapted well when it comes to the new meta. With their substitution players removed, it remains highly unlikely that they will be able to win their match against the Gladiators.

The Los Angeles Gladiators is led in team morale and performance by Fissure. Considering the fact that he is playing against his former team, it definitely raises the stakes for the Korea player. He will attempt to win this match against London Spitfire and eliminate them from the Season 1.

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