The West Coast Meets Texas Justice in the Overwatch League’s Grand Finals - Prima Games

The West Coast Meets Texas Justice in the Overwatch League’s Grand Finals

It's a shootout for the ages

by Daphne Fama
Overwatch League Main Logo

It’s been an intense few days! Starting on October 30, the best Overwatch 2 players in the twelve best teams vied for supremacy in the playoffs. Major upsets, incredible plays, and dramatic finishes have marked the days, and the teams that have made it to the semifinals did so with some major wins under their belt.

Rising above all others was Dallas Fuel, who won every match they competed in and secured themselves a spot in the Grand Finals.

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But the two remaining teams, who climbed their way to the semifinals, are fan-favorites. San Francisco Shocks and the Houston Outlaws proved themselves better than the 9 other teams, and were set to square off at 5pm PT.

The Overwatch League Semifinals Breakdown

San Francisco Shock was the Overwatch League Champions in 2020, but they entered 2022 with a team composed primarily of rookies looking to prove themselves. Especially after suffering such a close loss to the Houston Outlaws several days earlier.

The Houston Outlaws have proven time and time again that they’re capable of going toe-to-toe with some of the best players in the league, but have yet to bring home a major tournament win. Both teams went into the semifinals determined to win.

The Houston Outlaws were the first to select the map, and they chose Nepal, a Control map. It’s well known that San Francisco Shock has never won a Control map. There’s even a meme about it. It’s likely that the Houston Outlaws were attempting to net themselves an easy early win, but San Francisco Shock shocked the stadium by absolutely dominating.

Proper, San Francisco Shock’s DPS on Sojourn assassinated everyone in his way, dealing insane damage while only taking three deaths.

The San Francisco Shock was quick to post this meme.

Houston Outlaw didn’t fare much better on Kings Row, as the San Francisco Shock claimed an early team kill while on attack, and aggressively pushed back the Houston Outlaws, snowballing them until the very end of the map.

While Houston Outlaws were able to claim the first checkpoint in King’s Row, they weren’t able to take the second, as Striker, San Francisco Shock’s Reaper, was able to clear the checkpoint with a well-placed Death Blossom and ended the game.

The final map, Route 66, was the Houston Outlaw’s last chance to stage a comeback. Fortunately, it proved to be a closer fight. Houston Outlaws began on attack and MER1T, Houston Outlaws DPS on Sojourn, was able to take some vicious kills before the last push, ending the first round just before the second checkpoint. And while the Houston Outlaws were able to claim the first checkpoint on attack, they simply couldn’t bring the payload as far as the San Francisco Shock. With only a meter to go, San Francisco Shock wiped out the Houston Outlaws with well-placed ultimates from both Proper and Striker, ending the match in a flurry of bullets.

Proper has distinguished himself as the MVP of the playoffs, if not of the year.

Redeemed after their last loss to the Houston Outlaws, the San Francisco Shock moved forward into the Grand Finals to meet Dallas Fuel.

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The Grand Finals!

San Francisco Shock enters the Grand Finals as the clear underdog. They were seeded at a much lower bracket, but Dallas Fuel has been the team to beat the entire playoffs. The winner is determined by the first to four points, or four map wins.

The OWL Grand Finals: Lijiang 0-0

The first map was Lijiang, a control map. Dallas Shock dominated the first round of Lijang, only to C9 on the second. On the next round, Proper makes an embarrassing fumble and throws himself off the map right after a Kitsune Rush from their team’s Kiriko. It’s possible that this fumble might have cost the San Francisco Shock this map, as Dallas Fuel is just able to hold it, securing the point.

San Francisco Shock’s Sojourn, Proper, and Dallas Fuel’s Sojourn, Edison, prove to be almost equally matched. The two DPS players were neck-and-neck in damage and accuracy.

The OWL Grand Finals: King’s Row  

The second map was King’s Row, a hybrid map. Dallas Fuel started on Defense but couldn’t keep San Francisco Shock from taking the point. Dallas are briefly able to hold outside of the second choke, but San Francisco Shock is able to push through, taking the payload to second point. But this is as far as they get before Dallas Fuel shuts down their every push. On attack, Dallas Fuel quickly takes first point. But San Francisco Shock is able to hold it, with Proper taking three kills with only one minute left on the clock. In the final push, Proper takes the most important kill, knocking out Edison, and the team clears out the rest of Dallas Shock, claiming the first point for San Francisco Shock.

The OWL Grand Finals: Dorado

Dorado, a push map, is next. San Francisco Shock is on attack, and they snag a few quick kills, forcing Dallas Fuel to retreat and regroup. They gain the first point, and while Dallas Fuel is able to hold the second for a time, Striker on Reaper pushes them through with a triple kill. But right before San Francisco Shock can take the payload those final few meters to the end of the map, Dallas Fuel’s Sp9rk1e Death Blossoms as Reaper, taking three major kills.  

On defense, Proper flexes his accuracy with some early headshots. But Striker shows he’s no slouch by helping secure a teamkill on Dallas Fuel’s next push. Dallas Fuel is able to push through, taking the map to the second point, where Sp9rk1e is able to secure a quadruple kill that bleeds into a teamkill of his own. But this isn’t enough, as San Francisco Shock brings it back, holding the payload just outside of the second point. This earns them the second point, leaving the scoreboard at San Francisco Shock 2, Dallas Fuel 1.

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The OWL Grand Finals: Esperança

The fourth map is Esperança, selected by Dallas Fuel. Dallas Fuel takes an early lead, and while San Francisco Shock is able to briefly bring it together, they’re unable to get value out of their ultimates, and Dallas reclaims the robot. For every Death Blossom Striker puts down, Sp9rk1e does it better, and Dallas Fuel are able to claim the map and tie up the game 2-2.

The OWL Grand Finals: Oasis

The fourth map is Oasis, a Control map, and it’s exceptionally close. Both teams make exceptional plays, with both getting 99%. But in overtime, Dallas Fuel is able to take it, securing the first round, though that’s the only round they’ll take. San Francisco Shock shuts them down hard in the second round, refusing to let Dallas Fuel control the point for even a second. And then they do it again in the third round, with the final seconds ending with Proper going head-to-head with Edison and knocking him out of the water. San Francisco Shock secures the map and the point, leaving the game at 3-2.

The OWL Grand Finals: Route 66

The sixth map is Route 66 again, and there are many who are shocked it got this far. It’s been a close match, and Dallas starts strong on defense, putting San Francisco down over and over. But in the last minute, San Francisco is able to take the payload, getting it close to halfway to the second point, very similar to the last match on this map. But Sp9rk1e drags them off of it, clearing it in Overtime with a Death Blossom.

On attack, Dallas gets that early win and then guides the payload to first point, playing close to Big Earl to force San Francisco to give up the high ground. Once they do, Dallas is able to wipe them and take the checkpoint. With ample time, Dallas clears San Francisco and takes the point, tying up the board again at 3-3.

The OWL Grand Finals: Colosseo

This is the first time in Overwatch League history a team has made it all the way to the seventh map. This is also the first time Colosseo has ever been seen in the League. But it’s this map that decides the winner, and both teams bring everything they have. It’s a tight back and forth, but Dallas is able to take the second checkpoint after some precision shots from Edison on Sojourn. But before they can take it much further, Striker is able to decimate half of Dallas Fuel, turning the robot around. That doesn’t last for long, as Edison uses Sojourn’s Overclock to get the kills they need to secure the robot.

But just as Dallas Fuel is about to bring it into the final stretch, Striker secures it again with a juicy Death Blossom that buys San Francisco time and distance. But the clock’s in overtime, and just as the San Francisco gets the robot to the second checkpoint, Dallas Fuel rallies and wipes San Francisco Shock for the last time, securing the map and the Overwatch League Grand Final trophy.

Yes! It’s a match that will go down in Overwatch League History. These two teams were an equal match, but Dallas Fuel was just able to secure it. Congratulations to Dallas Fuel, and Fearless for being crowned the Grand Finals MVP!