The Los Angeles Gladiators are the Midseason Madness champions
Los Angeles Gladiators champions
Provided by Activision-Blizzard.

The Los Angeles Gladiators are the Midseason Madness champions

The Gladiators are back-to-back stage champions in 2022

The Los Angeles Gladiators defeated the San Francisco Shock 4-2 in the Overwatch League 2022 Midseason Madness finals, now champions of the stage. This marks them as back-to-back stage champions in the 2022 season, also victors of the Kickoff Clash.

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The Gladiators get an early lead

Heading into this series, the Gladiators were the team that fought through the lower bracket to the finals. The Shock came to play in Hawaii, storming through the upper bracket and beating teams like the Shanghai Dragons, the London Spitfire and the Gladiators too. However, the Gladiators fought back by beating the Atlanta Reign 3-1, setting up a rematch with the Shock to see who would win the Midseason Madness title.

For the Gladiators, the series couldn’t have started any better. Ilios proved to be really close, but the Gladiators just managed to win it. The next map of Eichenwalde proved to be better suited to the Gladiators’ strengths. The Gladiators fully completed the map on attack before holding the Shock just at the bridge. Watchpoint Gibraltar was the third map, and that also proved to be as close as Ilios was. However, the injection of Lee “ANS” Seon-chang was enough to put LA on top, with his Widowmaker play still among the best in the league.

The Shock fight back

The next two maps swung in the Shock’s favor, much like in their first matchup earlier in the tournament. On New Queen Street, Kim “Proper” Dong-hyun helped the Shock start the comeback with a great Tracer performance. Continuing into Lijang Tower, the same could be said as Proper alongside teammate Samuel “s9mm” Santos just didn’t let the Gladiators’ backline live long.

It all came down to Dorado, a map that could potentially tie the series. Both teams fully pushed the payload to the end of the map, with the Gladiators getting a better time. However, Jung “Kilo” Jin-woo started to win more of the Widowmaker duels, almost getting two checkpoints in overtime. In the end, the Los Angeles Gladiators also made a great overtime push with ANS getting crucial kills, just managing to beat the Shock’s distance pushed and become champions again.

A tough loss for the Shock, who just weren’t able to touch the cart at that time. Now, there is a small break until the next stage, the Summer Showdown, starting on August 11.

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Michael Czar
Polish-Canadian game enthusiast. I've been entrenched in gaming for as long as I can remember, with my first game being Pokemon Yellow and my most played games being Borderlands 2 and Overwatch. I have a degree in Film Studies, but writing about esports just makes my job all the better.