OWL Power Rankings: February 26
OWL Power Rankings: February 26

This article is part of our OWL Power Rankings series.

Stage 2 is upon us! With the new stage and new meta, we've got a new set of power rankings. While the number one team hasn't changed from the end of Stage 1, there was plenty of movement in the rest of the standings. From Seoul moving back towards the top to Dallas finally looking like a strong team, this week has it all. Without further ado, let's get right into it.

1. London Spitfire (Stage 1 Ranking: 1)

London dropped a series against Houston in what can be said was extremely hard-earned win by the Outlaws. It was a series that also made it a bit hard to rank the top-four this week. If they’re all so close to each other here in Week 1, is a week’s worth of performances really enough to rank these teams? At the end of the day, though, London showed off the most consistency between their two series against Houston and New York. This can easily change soon, so we must be patient for now. -- Steven Nguyen

2. Seoul Dynasty (Stage 1 Ranking: 4)

New meta, new Dynasty. With Yang “tobi” Jin-Mo and Ryu “ryujehong” Je-Hong free from Mercy jail, and tobi able to play his Lucio, which is arguably the best in the world, this team looks lethal, similar to the Lunatic-Hai of old. In addition, Tracer specialist Chae “Bunny” Jun-Hyeok stepped up in a huge way for the team, taking some of the pressure to carry off Kim” Fleta” Byung-Sun, which was one of this team’s biggest problems in Stage 1. It might be presumptive to say that Seoul is ready to dominate, as it still made some mistakes in Week 1, but Seoul playing this well early in a new patch is a good sign. -- Noah Waltzer

3. Houston Outlaws (Stage 1 Ranking: 3)

While I was tempted to place Houston higher for myself personally, I might need another week or two to convince me to put them in the top-two. However, it is now acceptable to say that Houston is consistently going to be able to beat the South Korean teams, but the question is how long this will be a true statement since the South Korean teams are more than capable of adapting to learn from their mistakes. Still, Houston is right on the cusp of greatness as a team and the next few weeks will tell if they can break inthe the true upper echelons or if they’ll be doomed to trail the South Koreans for another Stage. --Steven Nguyen

4. New York Excelsior (Stage 1 Ranking: 2)

The New York Excelsior were cream of the crop in Stage 1, with their players being particularly well suited for the Mercy-centric meta, but Stage 2 has gotten off to an...interesting start. The Excelsior dropped a game to the Florida Mayhem, making the struggling squad look much better than they are, and even looked to be on the verge of heading to overtime at one point. The Excelsior then lost a close contest with the London Spitfire. The Excelsior are still strong, but could be prone to some embarrassing stumbles throughout this stage. -- Travis Elliott

5. Dallas Fuel (Stage 1 Ranking: 10)

A roster change and a new meta later, and suddenly Dallas has jumped up several tiers. Not only did they easily handle the Shanghai Dragons, but they stomped the Los Angeles Gladiators thanks to the OWL debut of Dylan “aKm” Bignet and re-debut of Felix “xQc” Lengyel. The two players gave Dallas some much needed muscle and focus after an abysmal Stage 1. The infamous xQc was especially key in the team’s victory over the Gladiators thanks to his Winston that helped his team bully and zone their opponents. The best part is that Dallas feels like they are just beginning to warm-up for Stage 2. -- Christiaan Kutlik

6. Philadelphia Fusion (Stage 1 Ranking: 7)

In Stage 1, Georgii “ShaDowBurn” Gushcha was Philly’s greatest strength, but removing him from the starting lineup has done wonders for this squad. Josue “Eqo” Corona has shown that he is a more than capable replacement for SDB, but he brings much more than just a mechanically good Genji. For the first time in a while, this team looks coordinated when they dive, ensuring that Joona “Fragi” Laine doesn’t immediately feed on engages. What’s more, the meta shifting away from Mercy seems to have rejuvenated Alberto “neptunO” Gonzalez Molinillo, who is more than capable on Lucio. The Fusion didn’t face too much stiff competition, with Boston struggling of late, so it’ll be worth keeping an eye on the Fusion to see how it fares later in the Stage once all the other teams settle into a routine. --Noah Waltzer

7. Los Angeles Valiant (Stage 1 Ranking: 5)

The Valiant have fallen far over the course of our rankings, working their way from the #4 spot in Week 3 of Stage 1 to here at #7. The Valiant were utterly decimated by Seoul Dynasty to kick off the season, which was a far cry from their previous meeting in which the Valiant made Los Angeles’ case for being true Stage 1 contenders. After being embarrassed in the opener they took out their frustration on Shanghai, but even that was not without its miscues for LA as they drew one game with the winless squad. There is plenty of time to see what the Valiant truly brings to the table in Stage 2, but if they want to contend they will need to show it quickly. --Travis Elliott

8. Boston Uprising (Stage 1 Ranking: 6)

At the end of Stage 1 the Boston Uprising were a contender for playoffs. Coming into Stage 2 one might have expected the same thing. Unfortunately, it seems like the team is struggling to adjust to the new meta. Uprising played team compositions similar to those it did last stage, while other teams seemed to have adapted to the new meta more quickly. In turn, this has significantly lowered the power ranking of the Uprising for Week 1. If it takes the same trajectory as last stage, we may see Boston adapt to the meta in time for Stage 2 Playoffs. -- Liam Craffey

9. Los Angeles Gladiators (Stage 1 Ranking: 9)

All things considered, this wasn’t the worst start the Gladiators could have had. They started by decimating the Shock in a true battle between two lower-tier teams before running into a rejuvenated Dallas Fuel. Had this been in Stage 1, I would have knocked the Gladiators for this loss. But Dallas is much-improved here in Stage 2. And the Gladiators did a game, so it wasn’t all bad. Time will tell if Los Angeles will build on the win against the Shock or if the cracks they showed against Dallas will continue to grow. -- Wyatt Donigan

10. San Francisco Shock (Stage 1 Ranking: 8)

Well, they took a map off Seoul! That was about the only highlight for this struggling San Francisco squad. At just about every turn, they look dazed and confused no matter the opponent. While winning anything against a Seoul team that looks better than ever was well and good, getting obliterated by the Gladiators to start the week was quite the low point for the Shock. Now sitting at just 3-9 on the season, the question becomes whether Matthew “Super” Delisi and Jay “sinatraa” Won will be enough to dig this team out of the gargantuan hole they have dug? -- Wyatt Donigan

11. Shanghai Dragons (Stage 1 Ranking: 12)

The Shanghai Dragons still haven’t been able to pick up a single win in the Overwatch League. However, at the start of Stage 2, they seem to be in a better spot than we’ve seen before, although that was an admittedly low bar. The team is really be coming into their own aggressive identity. Players are coordinating with each other more than before, and this has allowed them to push back somewhat push back middle pack teams. None of this, though, changes the fact that they still haven’t obtained a single victory. Thus, it still takes one of the lowest ranks. -- Liam Craffey

12. Florida Mayhem (Stage 1 Ranking: 11)

Even in the new meta, Florida Mayhem just continue to struggle. Granted, they were able to take a map of off New York, but that was only when New York was down a player and after a tight Lijiang Tower. Mayhem’s woes are surprising since the current meta only favors Mayhem’s blitzkrieg strategies of just rushing the enemy team. But the team’s lack of hero diversity and limp firepower meant that Florida could hardly follow-up on any of their advantages. It speaks volumes that the most notable thing for Florida Mayhem this week was the lack of any memes in their entrances. -- Christiaan Kutlik

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