The Philadelphia flipped the form books as they defeated the season juggernaut New York Excelsior in the Overwatch League second semi-final yesterday. Carrying a 1-0 lead heading into the game courtesy of a resounding 3-0 win a week earlier, the sixth-seed Fusion had a lot in their hands as the top see Excelsior have no plans of going out early.

owl bracket

The Fusion started strongly yesterday, winning 3-2 on Junkertown which sent a huge statement that their win last week was more than just a fluke. NYXL looked as if they haven’t fully grasped the meta but that alone is no excuse as the Fusion outplayed them in every department and looked like a more solid unit overall. After going on a losing streak for four maps in the playoffs, the NYXL finally won one – in Lijiang – to tie the score 1-1 in the series.

The NYXL opted for Pine to partner Saebyeolbe on DPS duties and while both were able to pull off some kills throughout, their effectiveness was somewhat nullified by the Fusion’s tight composition which didn’t allow the rest of the NYXL to fully capitalize whenever the Fusion are down a player or two.

Any doubts as of the Fusion’s credentials going into the finals were quashed in the third map, King’s Row, as not only were they able to push the payload in its entirety, they managed a full hold the NYXL to take a 2-1 lead and just one map away from the Grand Finals.

While NYXL had the most complete DPS corps in the league, Fusion had the most complete DPS player in Carpe who at times almost single-handedly win teamfights for his side. Partnering him was the versatile Eqo, whose ability to adapt and switch heroes ensured that his team are always a step ahead of the competition.

But the Excelsior had no plans of wilting early and hit back with a morale boosting win on Hanamura  to force the fifth map on Dorado.

Sadly though, it was a perfect reflection of how their season was going to end. After successfully stalling the Fusion push right at the death, the NYXL only needed a full completion to secure the series and force a third game. Things looked well for the NYXL as they met little resistance en route to the final checkpoint. All signs pointed for a convincing NYXL victory and as they entered the final section, they had about four minutes to complete it.

This was where the Fusion showed everyone why they deserved to be in the Grand Finals as they staged an epic defense, denying the NYXL from even coming close to the payload. The built-up confidence from the earlier strong push quickly vanished as the NYXL march came to a standstill and in desperation time, they even opted to a triple tank, triple support composition to force more bodies onto the payload to no avail. The Fusion knew they had it in the bag, they dug their heels and now they are one match away from being the Grand Champions of the inaugural Overwatch League season.

The first ever Overwatch League Grand Finals will be played July 27–28, 2018 at the Barclays Center in New York City. Fifth-seed, London Spitfire who earlier defeated second-seed Los Angeles Valiant will meet the Philadelphia Fusion for a shot at the US$1Million prize money and esports immortality.

Be sure to check out our preview of this epic matchup in the coming days!

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