The 2021 Overwatch League Grand Finals, the last professional match before the switch over to Overwatch 2 in 2022, ended with the Shanghai Dragons sweeping the Atlanta Reign 4-0 on Saturday.
From 0-40 to 4-0, the four-year redemption arc for the Shanghai Dragons has seen a team that spent the first year of the league winless completely dominate the landscape.
Since the June Joust, the Dragons have been widely regarded as the best team in the league. From their star-studded lineup to their unshakable confidence and unbreakable synergy, Shanghai has been the team to beat, which they showcased in the last ever professional Overwatch series.
Atlanta, to its credit, played well; it simply wasn't enough to stop Shanghai.
As they have all season, the Dragons were in firm control of the pace, going faster than the Reign when they wanted to turn up the heat. Then, on a dime, the Dragons could slow down and find incremental value wins to lead up to eventual victory.
Shanghai started with a 2-0 win on Ilios, then took Hanamura 3-2 on the back of some of their tried-and-true dive and Pharah-led poke compositions. The Reign finally looked like they were fighting back on King's Row, a map Atlanta has been stellar on this postseason, but the Dragons were ready for them, taking the map 6-5 to go into halftime with a 3-0 lead.
Atlanta tried several different compositions and looks, but none of those mattered in the face of Finals MVP Jae-won "LIP" Lee, who took the title of "Best Sombra in the World" with his immaculate performance in the Finals, capping what has been a sensational year.
LIP's ability to deal high damage while finding value out of his Hacks is something Shanghai has rode to success all year, pummeling enemy frontlines and halting opponents in their tracks.
Just one 3-2 win on Havana later, and the Shanghai Dragons took home the final professional title in Overwatch in dominant fashion, rightly taking their place as the greatest team shortly before the League and the world transitions into Overwatch 2.
--Field Level Media