Florida Mayhem go 1-1 in their first weekend of the Overwatch League

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The Mayhem's new color scheme going into the OWL's third season. Photo from Florida Mayhem.

André González Rodríguez, Contributor

The Florida Mayhem started off their third Overwatch League (OWL) season with a 1-1 record, sweeping the Houston Outlaws on the first day but falling on the second day to the Philadelphia Fusion – who hosted the matches.

In the OWL, the matches are first to three – three games or maps. The first team to win three maps wins the series. Each map is a different game mode, with the maps and game modes being predetermined by the league at the start of the season. 

Game one of the series is Control. There are three neutral points that get cycled every round that the players must fight to control. Game two is Escort (aka Payload), which puts an attacking and a defending team against each other. The attacking team must push a cart to the end of the map or as far as they can while the defending team must stop them. Game three is Hybrid, which is a combination of the assault portion of Control and the pushing of Escort. The offensive team must first gain control of the payload while the defending team has to stop them. Once the offense takes control of the payload, they must push it to the end of the map or as far as they can.

Each team is comprised of six heroes – two tanks, two DPS (damage dealers) and two supports. Each player plays their own character and each character has their own set of abilities as well as their own ultimate ability. Ultimates are abilities that the players build over time by either dealing damage to their opponents or healing their allies.

The Florida Mayhem are coming into the third season of the OWL, hoping to turn themselves around after mediocre performances in their first and second season. Heading into the Philadelphia homestand, the Mayhem looked to start the season off on the right foot. 

Day 1: Florida Mayhem vs Houston Outlaws

The Mayhem, a squad that mostly stayed intact throughout the off-season shuffle, faced off against the Houston Outlaws who made a lot of key additions to their roster going into this third season of the OWL. 

In game one of Busan Control, the Mayhem made quick work of the Outlaws in Round 1, having had 18 eliminations to the Outlaws’ 1, only allowing the Outlaws to reach 18 percent. In round two, the Outlaws fought back to start the round but the Mayhem managed to retake control of the point and closed it out winning the map 2-0.

Even with a strong start to the Mayhem’s offensive push in game two of Havana Escort, the Outlaws managed to hold off the Mayhem, preventing them from advancing the point in round one. In response to the Outlaws’ defensive efforts, the Mayhem played even better defense, closing round two off of the back of  Beom-jun “Gargoyle” Lee, and his huge denial of João Pedro “Hydration” Goes Telles’ Mei ultimate, winning the second game on a score of 2-0. 

In the third game of the series, Eichenwalde Hybrid, the Mayhem were able to get past the Outlaws’ defensive hold on checkpoint B, leading into a good combination of ultimates to close out the map in overtime on checkpoint C getting three points on their offensive push. Similar to the Mayhem’s offensive push, the Outlaws mirrored it by getting the first two checkpoints but were unable to complete the map, leading to the Mayhem winning game three and their first series of the OWL’s third season. 

“It feels great – it feels like I was flying and also I was slightly worried like in the corner of my mind about how my debut match was gonna go but now that it’s gone smoothly it feels great,” Jun-Ki “Yaki” Kim, one of Florida’s DPS, said during his post-game interview with Alex “Goldenboy” Mendez. “I was worried that our conditions weren’t at a hundred percent then we wouldn’t have played so well, but thankfully we felt good going in so we did well, as for the meta we might’ve not played the most ideal meta for what’s strongest but it still worked out so for that I’m grateful.

Day 2: Florida Mayhem vs Philadelphia Fusion

On the second day of the Philadelphia Homestand, the Florida Mayhem faced off against the Philadelphia Fusion. Coming into the match, the Mayhem had a different line-up compared to the previous day, substituting out DPS Jung-woo “Sayaplayer” Ha, off-tank Beom-jun “Gargoyle” Lee and support Nam-jin “Gangnamjin” Gang.

They took two key pieces away from yesterday’s win, with Gargoyle playing D.Va and Gangnamjin playing Ana as well as removing Sayaplayer. In place of these players, Seong-ju “Byrem” Lee came in to play Baptiste, replacing Gangnamjin and Pan-seung “Fate” Koo came in to play Orisa, replacing Gargoyle. 

Game one started off with a mirroring of tanks and DPS between the two team’s compositions, with the Fusion controlling the first round off of the backs of the players Jae-hyeok “Carpe” Lee and Seung-hyun “Ivy” Lee leading into a round one loss for the Mayhem. Replying to the strong showing of round one by the Fusion, the Mayhem quickly fired back with a 100-0 win in round two. Even with Sang-bum “BQB” Lee’s last-ditch attempt with a flanking McCree ultimately eliminating two players, the Mayhem fell in round one, losing  2-1.

In game two of Junkertown Escort, the Mayhem brought back their key players from day one in Sayaplayer, Gargoyle, and Gangnamjin. The Mayhem started off the first section of the map on defense. The Fusion quickly dealt with the Mayhem, reaching every single point of Junkertown and obtaining one minute and 45 seconds in the timebank which is the time allotted to teams in their second offensive push after their performance in their first offensive push. Florida played their offense more up into the Fusion’s spawn door with Gargoyle playing blocker against the Fusion’s Carpe, trying to block his sightlines. 

On offense, even with strong resistance from the Fusion, the Mayhem were able to get point A. Going into point B, the Mayhem dominated the push all the way, thwarting any defensive attempt by the Fusion. Even with the Mayhem’s strong start to their push, gaining the first two points, it still wasn’t enough and the Mayhem fell 3-2.

Game three was Blizzard World Hybrid. Even with BQB’s attempt to suppress the Fusion’s big guns of Carpe and Gael “Poko” Gouzerch with his Sombra play, the Mayhem fell to the Fusion 3-0 – losing their second match of the weekend. 

The Mayhem are currently eighth in the standings and will be looking for more wins during the fourth weekend of the OWL in Houston on February 29.