OWL Power Rankings: May 22
OWL Power Rankings: May 22

This article is part of our OWL Power Rankings series.

Surprise, surprise. After the Excelsior locked up another Stage Title a couple weeks back, they have now found their way back into the top spot of the rankings. After teams like the Boston Uprising and London Spitfire continue to spiral out of control, New York stands tall as the most consistent team in all of Overwatch. While teams like Houston and Philadelphia are looking solid, the chances that anyone will be able to stop New York are looking a bit low.

1. New York Excelsior (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 2)

After a few weeks out of the top spot, New York are back at their rightful place at Number 1 in the League (Editor’s note: Nice New York bias there, Christiaan). However, it was a surprisingly bumpy road as New York attempted to re-adjust to the new meta of Stage 4, almost reluctant to show off their new strategies early in the week. This caused the Excelsior to tie one map with the Florida Mayhem before winning the series 3-0 as they refused to run Brigitte. However, New York pulled out all the stops for their series against London Spitfire, finally using Brigitte and various other heroes to devastate their rivals. -- Christiaan Kutlik

2. Houston Outlaws (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 5)

The Outlaws seems to have gone to headquarters for some intensive training, and came back with revitalized muster. Not only did they blow out the Spitfire in a 4-0 sweep, but went on to close out the week with a strong finish against Stage 2 finalists the Boston Uprising. While there have been moments of greatness in the past, this new and improved Houston lineup seems to be in serious contention for playoffs. From a more consistent Jiri “LinkzR” Masalin to lethal Austin “Muma” Wilmot, don’t be surprised if the Outlaws suddenly become a contender for Stage 4 title. -- Liam Craffey

3. Philadelphia Fusion (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 7)

Despite missing the playoffs in Stage 3, the Philadelphia Fusion are right back into the thick of things at the start of Stage 4. While their 4-0 over the Florida Mayhem was nothing to write home about, their 3-1 decimation of the Boston Uprising was quite the headturner. Whereas the gameplan used to wholly revolve around Lee “Carpe” Jae-hyeok needing to pop off to keep the Fusion afloat, they got plenty of help from all angles this week. Whether it was Josh “Eqo” Corona continue to be a jack of all trades (the man even played D.Va against the Uprising), Kim “SADO” Su-min stepping in for Joona “fragi” Laine and doing a solid job at it, or Choi “HOTBA” Hong-Jun making a surprise appearance to play D.Va, Zarya, and Brigitte, the Fusion simply did it all this week. Time will tell if this will continue, but for now, things are certainly look up for Philly. -- Wyatt Donigan

4. Los Angeles Gladiators (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 3)

The L.A. Gladiators are looking like a strong team early on in Stage 4, showing a good grasp of the current meta as the team’s current roster continues to strengthen the synergy between the starting six. The Gladiators should be the only team that can prevent themself from succeeding this stage with the in-meta heroes being favorable to the current starters, with Baek “Fissure” Chan-Hyung having initially risen to prominence from his Reinhardt play. The team’s deep bench is also a large boon, giving the Gladiators the ability to run a myriad of different strategies and keep every team guessing on what lineup will be played. The Gladiators look like early favorites in the West. -- Travis Elliott

5. Los Angeles Valiant (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 4)

When we last met our heroes they were getting rocked by the New York Excelsior in the Stage 3 Playoffs. Since Stage 4 got underway, however, the Valiant have looked pretty strong, which is a bit surprising given the large meta shift between Stages 3 and 4. Last time we saw a large meta shift, the Valiant limped their way to a 5-5 finish in Stage 2. This time they look way more prepared, though. With Indy “SPACE” Halpern pulling out a solid Zarya, Terence “SoOn” Tarlier playing the new hotness in Brigitte, and Brady “Agilities” Girardi tearing up as per usual, the Valiant look poised for another deep run here in Stage 4. -- Wyatt Donigan

6. San Francisco Shock (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 9)

The San Francisco Shock are an enigma. On paper, the team looks like it should be in the top five, but in reality the team is not playing like the paper says they should. The Shock has had problems with adapting to changes in enemy lineups and problems changing their own lineup to deal with a problem that was unexpected when drawing up strategies. The team is also dealing with some of the drawbacks from having such a young squad, star players such as Matthew “super” DeLisi lack experience on the meta heroes. San Francisco is also dealing with a good problem, which is having too many options. The team has a bevy of players at all positions and thus has plenty of ways to address their problems. Once the acclimation period is over with new head coach Park “Crusty” Da-hee, the Shock should be looking like a slightly greener, L.A. Gladiators. -- Travis Elliott

7. Seoul Dynasty (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 6)

Seoul has no idea who it is and what’s going on anymore. Plain and simple, this team is ostensibly having a midlife crisis to kick off Stage 4, which isn’t even that far fetched for this team when you think about it. Captain and flex player Ryu “ryujehong” Je-hong’s time on main tank proves that this team needs a better permanent main tank, though Miro has talked about returning soon and being better than his previous poor outings. The inability to pick a lineup it likes between using both main supports is interesting as well. Hopefully, the Dynasty decides to stick with Heo “Gambler” Jin-woo in the main healer spot, move RJH back to flex support, and start figuring out this new anti-dive world they must now contend with. -- Noah Waltzer

8. London Spitfire (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 8)

Honestly, what even happened? This team hasn’t looked good at all since Stage 3 began and despite even incremental improvements to team cohesion by the end of Stage 3, the team took a leap back into the trash for the premiere week of Stage 4. And somehow, look even worse than Stage 3, if that’s even possible. Choi “Bdosin” Seung-tae didn’t look like his usual self, Park “Profit” Jun-young was sloppy as well. Both were usually still high on the individual levels of looking good despite a failing team but it seems like the two have finally fallen to lower standards. Both had awful moments where they were either ineffective or just straight up feeding ultimate meter to the opponents. Team’s falling from grace however doesn’t seem new, just more of the same these days. -- Steven Nguyen

9. Boston Uprising (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 1)

Similar to Stage 2, the Boston Uprising have been struggling to adapt quickly to this new meta. While they have sparks of greatness, such as Noh “Gamsu” Young-jin’s Reinhardt, Shin “Kalios” Woo-yeol’s Zarya, and Kwon “Striker” Nam-joo’s Hanzo, Brigitte seems to be a major thorn in their sides. With Striker’s star hero, Tracer, practically nullified in this meta, the Uprising will need to undergo some major restructuring. Hopefully this happens sooner rather than later, but the current forecast predicts a hurricane ahead. -- Liam Craffey

10. Florida Mayhem (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 10)

Florida’s permanent residence in the bottom three might not be too bad, considering they can reliably take wins over a few teams and can genuinely be a threat on very specific maps if the mood is right. That being said, DPS and salvation Ha “Sayaplayer” Jung-woo can’t do this alone. Florida will need to invest in acquiring better supports and potentially look at upgrading its frontline, since its DPS slot is solid. Maybe I’m overrating the DPS on this squad apart from Sayaplayer, but it’s not like the rest of the team give that unit any help in carrying anyways. -- Noah Waltzer

11. Dallas Fuel (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 12)

The Dallas Fuel is in the dumpster along with the Shanghai Dragons, but at least they aren’t that bad, yet. Looking the worst since it became a team for the Overwatch League, it’s almost a wonder it doesn’t crash and burn in comically loud fireworks but them’s the works. The team is uncoordinated, Pongphop "Mickie" Rattanasangchod only happened to look acceptable for once due to the fact that Brigitte’s existence thrashed the Shanghai Dragons while Timo "Taimou" Kettunen getting beat in 1-on-1 Widowmaker duels by Lu “Diya” Weida shows that the once top dog DPS is still falling fast. They need a lot of work before they become a presentable team again. -- Steven Nguyen

12. Shanghai Dragons (Stage 3 Final Ranking: 11)

So close, yet so far. The Shanghai Dragons likely had their best chance to finally pick up a win, 30 straight losses, as they went up against a crippled Dallas Fuel in a brand-new meta on the very first day of Stage 4. Everything was stacked in their favor. Unfortunately, that still wasn’t enough for Shanghai pull in a win. Their limp support players continue to weigh down and mire the Dragon’s DPS and tank players with weak healing and an inability to time ultimates. -- Christiaan Kutlik

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