The June Joust qualifiers conclude this weekend before the Knockout Round on Sunday. Check out the four matches Overwatch League fans should watch this weekend for the best bang for your buck.
Limited hero pool in the Overwatch League for June Joust
The Overwatch League is entering into the final weekend of qualifiers for the June Joust tournament. We will know the four teams who will compete for the championship after the knockout stage on Sunday.
Unlike the May Melee tournament, the June Joust has Hero Pools for all matches in qualifiers and the bracket. The Hero Pools ban 4 Heroes from the tournament, which affects the meta for the Overwatch League qualifiers. The heroes banned from the June Joust are Tracer, and Sombra on DPS, Reinhardt on Tank, and Zenyatta on Support.
The Hero Pools have changed the outlook of teams wanting to redeem themselves from their May Melee performance. While other favorites, like the May Melee champion Dallas Fuel for example, are not doing so well. The Dallas Fuel are on the brink of not qualifying for the knockouts with a 1-1 record going into this weekend.
The only results set in stone are the Atlanta Reign and the Houston Outlaws in the West, and the Shanghai Dragons in the East. All three of these teams have qualified for the knockouts with 3-1 records, respectively. The Toronto Defiant and the London Spitfire are both eliminated from contention with a 1-3 record and 0-4 record respectively. Every other team, while not mathematically eliminated yet, has a chance to qualify this weekend into the knockouts. Some teams have an easier road than others.
Four matches you should not miss from June Joust
Again, the Atlanta Reign and Houston Outlaws are in the knockout round, but their respective positions have yet to be determined. They will be watching closely at the results of the next few days to see where they end up on the ladder on Sunday.
Dallas Fuel vs Florida Mayhem – June 3rd 13:30 PDT / 16:30 EDT – youtube.com/overwatchleague
This Overwatch League match is a little bit of a deja vu for both teams. Considering Dallas and Florida were the two teams that qualified for the May Melee tournament. While Dallas did not eliminate Florida from the May Melee tournament, this match has substantial implications for both team’s chances to make it into the knockouts on Sunday for the June Joust.
Both teams are at 1-1, with Dallas holding a one-map differential lead. Ironically both Dallas and Florida’s win came against the 0-4 London Spitfire. A win here for Dallas would give them a decent shot to qualify for the knockouts. Their final match would be against the Vancouver Titans, which should be an easy win considering the Titan’s 0-2 record.
Florida is under similar circumstances. A win here would set them up for their final match against the Washington Justice, also 0-2 at the bottom of the standings.
Either way, we’ll see if Dallas’s recent acquisition of Pine out of retirement, and Fearless ability to step up and take charge can work again here to qualify their team for the knockouts.
Boston Uprising vs Los Angeles Gladiators – June 4th 12:00 PDT / 15:00 EDT – youtube.com/overwatchleague
Speaking of teams that benefit from the current Hero Pool meta, the ‘surging’ Boston Uprising are currently sitting at 2-0, along with the Los Angeles Gladiators.
The Uprising will have their match against the Paris Eternal the day before. Depending on the result, the Uprising will either have locked in a spot in the knockout stage or look to preserve their place against the Gladiators.
The Los Angeles Gladiators will be playing their first match of the weekend against the Boston Uprising. The Gladiators will also be looking to qualify into the knockout stage with a win here in this match. The Gladiators are somewhat in control of their destiny.
Also, a 3-0 win would put them real close to getting a bye in the knockouts for Boston and LA. The only other team within striking distance would be the San Fransisco Shock, which are within two map differential points from overtaking both teams.
Either way, we could see a new team qualify for the knockout stage.
Bonus West Region Match: Paris Eternal vs. Los Angeles Gladiators on June 5th.
This Overwatch League match will probably be a Last Chance Qualifier for the knockouts on Saturday, barring some massive tiebreaker scenario before this game gets played. Remember, for the May Melee tournament, there could have been a 3-way tie with 2-2 records and map differentials, so I’m just making a bet there will be more drama for this event.
The only team set in stone for the East is the Shanghai Dragons, who have qualified for the knockout round on Sunday. Their 9-4(+5) Map differential record doesn’t leave them safe in the first place, as they will probably slip in the standing after the matches this weekend.
Only four teams can qualify for the June Joust out of the East Region because of fewer teams. From past results, a 2-2 record will not cut it to qualify into the tournament. The New York Excelsior find themselves in this position going into the weekend with a 2-2 record, and no games left to play. They will have to watch as three other teams will be gunning for their qualification spot.
Here are a few Overwatch League East Region matches to watch for this weekend.
Philadelphia Fusion vs Guangzhou Charge – June 4th 02:00 PDT / 05:00 EDT – youtube.com/overwatchleague
While this is early in the morning for us Westerners, this match could throw the entire East into Chaos.
The Philadelphia Fusion were in 1st place in the qualifiers for the May Melee, only to lose to the Shanghai Dragons in the knockouts. They find themselves 0-2 right now for the June Joust, but this is where chaos theory comes into play.
Guangzhou has a 1-1 record going into the weekend and a +0 map differential with a 4-4 record. So hear me out here, if Philly can pull off a 3-0 here, that moves them to 5-6 and Guangzhou to 4-7 in map differential. The potential for a massive tiebreaker becomes possible as the weekend rolls on. Also, the next Philly match would be against the LA Valiant, which seems to be a perenially losing team for all intents and purposes. Almost replacing the Inaugural Season Shanghai Dragons of lore.
I’m saying that there is a chance for Philadelphia, and their Rocky-like training montage comeback story can start here.
Guangzhou could also win here, but they would have a tough match against Seoul the next day, the other 1-1 team looking for the last spot.
Either way, I’m rooting for Philly to make this weekend enjoyable.
Guangzhou Charge vs Seoul Dynasty – June 5th 03:30 PDT / 06:30 EDT – youtube.com/overwatchleague
The match is also part of my whole Chaos Theory for this weekend. Hangzhou Spark will more than likely win their match against the Valiant, qualifying them for the knockouts. That leaves Guangzhou, Seoul, and Chengdu, with 1-1 records to battle it out for the last two spots, assuming that the New York Excelsior’s 2-2 result doesn’t stand.
HOWEVER, what COULD happen is that we could have four teams with 2-2 records and a massive tie-break scenario. Making this match critical to whomever team wants to qualify into the knockouts on Sunday.
Either way, I’ll be watching for the most dramatic result possible.
Bonus East Region Match: Chengdu Hunters vs. Seoul Dynasty on June 4th
The Chengdu Hunters are the only other team with a 1-1 record, and only one map point differential separates them from Guangzhou and Seoul. The result of this match will determine how crazy the rest of Saturday will go.
Regardless of the results from the Overwatch League this weekend, the knockouts will take place on Sunday, June 6th, and we will find out which 4 teams will qualify for the June Joust double elimination bracket the weekend after. Keep an eye out for our recap of the weekend and bracket predictions next week.