Albless and Fefe have a chance to get their first win against their former team in the debut match of Season 3! The starting line up for the Defiant was Logix, Agilities, Nevix, Beast, Kellex, and Kariv. Paris started Xzi, Nicodgh, Benbest, NoSmite, Hyp, and FdGod. Paris had no flex tank since Hanbin is too young, and Smex is experiencing a visa issue. With that in mind, both main tanks NoSmite and Benbest were on the field. It is possible that Paris practiced a double shield composition going into week 1 knowing they’d be without a flex tank and considering multiple teams went with that strategy in later games.
Map 1: Lijiang
Beast had his first game on the Overwatch League stage, so fans were certainly questioning on how he would perform. Of course, any player can perform bad on debut trying to transition to a new environment. In Lijiang Night Market, he definitely made positioning mistakes when he was way out of position in relation to his team. This positioning threw off the team, as other members did not perform well as a unit. The poor team-play allowed Paris an easy win on Night Market.
The next part of Lijiang was in the Control Center. There was an unfortunate moment when Kariv gave Ana’s nanoboost to Logix, but by the time Logix teleported to try and flank Paris, The Eternal already Symetra teleported at white room. That cost Toronto a valuable ultimate, a game changing move that potentially cost the Defiant Lijiang! Kudos to Paris for acting quickly in that situation! In the end, Paris took Lijiang.
Map 2: Eichenwalde
Surefour would replace Logix on the stage, so it is back to the Canadian duo of Surefour and Agilities on Eichenwalde. Paris subbed in Greyy to replace Hyp. On Eichenwalde, Xzi was a force to be reckoned with! However, Toronto won Eichenwalde 1st point in one fight after Surefour got the early pick on Paris’s main support, FDGod. On the journey to the 2nd point, Agilities walled the Eternal off, staggered their arrival, and got Mei’s Blizzard which made it easier for Toronto to obtain 2nd checkpoint.
Kariv also had excellent reaction time to kill Xzi’s Mcree in the middle of a Deadeye on bridge high ground. Beast certainly had much better positioning in Eichenwalde. On 3rd checkpoint though, Beast got a 5 man shatter, unfortunately missing Nicodgh. Nicodgh was able to use Mei’s Iceblock on time, position the Ice Wall, and then her ultimate Blizzard, allowing Paris to turn the fight around! Toronto would eventually finish their push with 1:23 in the bank.
On Paris’s attack run, their 2nd push was successful in obtaining the first point. Xzi’s Symmetra was certainly the highlight of that moment. That was a threat until the 1st bridge from the attacker’s perspective. Xzi then switched to Widowmaker, in order to apply more high ground pressure on the Defiant. Kellex’s Lucio was able to contest the Widow however, forcing XZI back on Mcree. Toronto definitely had a strong defense and intelligent usage of ultimates in order to stop the payload from reaching 2nd point, but in the end, the team gave Xzi too much space to right click them heads. Paris slowly made their way to finish the map with less time than the Defiant.
On the Overtime push, Paris tried the Sym strategy again. Toronto was prepared for it this time, and Paris couldn’t even get one tick. Beast charged his shatter faster than Benbest putting pressure on the enemy team allowing the DPS and supports to re-position better away from Nicodgh’s Blizzard. Surefour almost charged up 2 Deadeyes on Paris’s singular push. Since Paris made no progress, Toronto could not lose the map.
On Toronto’s 2nd push, though, Kellex would be caught by Nicodgh’s Icicle which slowed the Defiant’s progress, however 2nd fight came. Surefour came for a flank, but it seemed to favor Paris when they forced Nevix out of his D.Va Mech. He got it back relatively quickly, salvaging the situation! Toronto would then team-fight better and rotate to outplay Paris, thus winning their first map of the 2020 Season!
Map 3: Horizon Lunar Colony
On Horizon Lunar Colony, Kariv definitely had more moments which reminded viewers of how great his Ana was. Every time the enemy Mcree would attempt to ult, Kariv would either outplay the Mcree by jiggle peak baiting, or he would get the sleep right when the Mcree was about to Deadeye Defiant targets. Surefour was excellent at placing Sym turrets in the right locations while the team was fighting the enemy constantly finding openings and picks. With relative ease, Toronto took the map with 3:09 remaining in their bank.
Paris on their first attack took 1st point easily using their strategy of Symetra as well. On the 2nd point defense from Toronto, the Defiant used variants of Hackfist, Monkey Dva, Zen Ana to deal with Paris’s comp. Agilities even had a moment when he got 4 kills with his Doomfist! It was unconventional for Beast to play the Winston considering that the monkey is not the traditional meta pick. Custa explained that it was excellent on getting to the back line of Paris since they had no Dva to help protect them. Paris finished the push, but had no time left; therefore, Paris did not have an attack while Toronto had 3:09 to get a single tick.
It took a while, but Toronto obtained the tick with less than a minute to spare. Beast got caught, but Nevix bought the time needed by using a D.Va self destruct on the point, forcing Paris to concede. Honestly, Benbest was under-performing this map. There were times when he would overextend, and Toronto knew how to punish him.
Map 4: Havana
In Havana, Logix substituted for Agilities. This threw the audience at first, since Agilities is known as the projectile specialist. Everyone expects him to play Mei. In the end, it was Surefour on Mei, a hero he is not particularly known for. Surefour does have the gift to play essentially any DPS hero, hitscan or projectile, proficiently on the Overwatch League stage, and that has truly shown! Logix started on Reaper, but seeing how Xzi was on Widowmaker, he countered with a Widowmaker of his own. Nevix ate a Mei Blizzard, which helped them obtain first point.
On the journey to the 2nd point, Surefour had excellent Mei Walls that helped the team constantly rotate in and out. They won fight by fight, but in a moment, Nevix and Beast executed a beautiful combo. Nevix bombed, and Beast found the opportunity to shatter Benbest allowing Benbest to die. This left the rest of Paris Eternal exposed.
In the end Toronto finished their push, but it did take a few lost fights in order to complete the map.
On Paris’s push, Toronto held for 2 minutes well, but Beast played really disrespectful at spawn door. The enemy got the pick, enabling a push of the cart to the first corner of progress. Logix, though, would certainly get picks on Paris, and he would even end the map full holding Paris with a 3k. Paris did not seem to have an answer probably due to the huge hold around the spawn door challenged by Defiant.
Toronto and Paris fans have potential strong seasons to look forward to. The season may be interesting, due to the fact that there is not one particular meta. Especially with the introduction of hero pools on the horizon. Toronto and Paris are probably middle of the pack teams, more prone to slip lower than challenge for playoffs.
Paris Players to Watch Out For
Xzi was constantly a nuisance! Paris had enough positioning to help Xzi attack from a considerable distance away from Toronto. Whether he played Symmetra, Mcree, or Widowmaker, he always put so much pressure, constantly clicking heads and rotating properly around the map. He was never a non factor! There were moments on Eichenwalde and especially Havana when he would outplay Toronto’s DPS duo. I could only imagine what would happen if Xzi’s traditional duo partner at Element Mystic, Sp9rkle were there. Nicodgh, to his credit, was really clutch for his team at certain moments and most of his Blizzards had value.
Paris also did not have a flex tank since Smex had visa problems, and Hanbin was underage, so that could have certainly changed the way that Paris wanted to play. To Benbest and NoSmite’s credit, they fought until the end.
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