OWL Week 5: The first week with Hero Pools sees multiple upsets

Week 5 of the Overwatch League (OWL) has come and gone, and it was an exciting one. It was the first week of the season with Hero Pools, and they had an immediate impact on the Overwatch games. Here are some takeaways from this week.

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          Houston Outlaws heating up

          The Houston Outlaws looked like a completely different team this weekend. They had a dominating win in their match against the Paris Eternal after picking up their first win against the Toronto Defiant last week.

          The first Hero Pool seemed to give Houston a leg up. Austin “Muma” Wilmot was able to play Winston since Reinhardt was unavailable and Paris couldn’t seem to find an answer to their dives.

          Philadelphia Fusion get their first loss

          What made the Paris Eternal’s loss to Houston even stranger was the fact that they would go on to hand the Philadelphia Fusion their first loss of the 2020 OWL season. Paris got off to a hot start, taking Ilios 2-0 and Junkertown 3-2. Philly was able to make a game of it, getting two maps back, but would go on to lose in an intense game on Oasis.

          It seems like Paris was able to learn from its loss against Houston and adjust its strategy against Philadelphia. Ki-hyo “Xzi” Jung looked like a completely different player in the two games. After having a questionable performance against Houston, he got it together playing Soldier 76 and Hanzo to take down the top team. This should be a great sign for Paris fans, especially after such a disappointing loss to Houston.

          Toronto and Boston’s woes continue

          The Toronto Defiant looked like they had some potential at the start of the 2020 OWL season after making some aggressive roster changes during the offseason, but they have been nothing but disappointing so far. A 3-1 loss to the Florida Mayhem didn’t do anything to help their cause this weekend. They attempted a dive team but were unable to make it work against Florida.

          Boston Uprising continue to look weak. They lost 3-1 against the Washington Justice on Saturday and 3-0 against the Atlanta Reign on Sunday. Walid “Mouffin” Bassal continued to make efforts to play Sigma, despite its not working. Perhaps they will be able to find success in a future Hero Pool where Sigma shines, like if D.Va is banned.

          Week 5’s Hero Pool gave OWL players many opportunities to play different compositions and heroes. Soldier 76, Tracer, Winston, and Orisa saw a lot more play this weekend due to the Reinhardt, Widowmaker, and McCree bans. It will be interesting to see what future Hero Pools will bring and which Overwatch teams they benefit.

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