Hadi: 'Nobody in the world could keep me alive except Landon'
In a stunning upset at the Overwatch League playoffs, the London Spitfire beat the favourites Atlanta Reign with an unexpected, yet decisive 3-0 scoreline, sending the favourites home early.
In a post-match press conference, Hadi "Hadi" Bleinagel and Landon "Landon" McGee shed light on the team dynamics and strategies that played a pivotal role in the win during their post-match press conference.
Mindgames and synergy
During the season and especially for the Play-Ins, the Spitfire took to match chat to engage in psychological attacks, trying to get a rise out of their opposition.
In the match against the San Francisco Shock during the qualifiers, Overwatch season 5 MVP Kim "Proper" Dong-hyun appeared to be impacted after his team stepped off the objective which caused his team to lose a round. The Spitfire players were quick to respond in mocking fashion and the momentum of the series appeared to shift. They would best the Shock by a 3-1 scoreline.
Once again during the playoff matches in Toronto, the match chat was lit up by Spitfire’s players. Hadi opened up about his psychological tactics during matches: “I just love to stare down the enemy, give them a little look, talk to them before the game, try to get into their head. A bit of match chat between rounds the camera couldn’t see. But not too much, it’s kind of sad. They barely typed back.”
Recalling a particular moment from the first map on Blizzard World where Hadi found himself separated, Landon explained, “It’s super hectic with the style of composition we play with everybody trying to coordinate a plan. Normally, it’s just Hadi screaming ‘CARE ME!’ and then it’s my job to find where he is and help him out.”
Hadi further emphasized their synergy, saying, “I feel bad for Landon because we’re playing this comp and every time I pull Landon through seven depths of hell and he has to put so many resources into me and still carry. I don’t know how he does it but he gets the job done. Nobody in the world could do it except Landon: Pocket me like this, still frag out, have the perfect lamps, listen to every rotation.”
Future Matchups and Recognitions
When contemplating upcoming challenges, Landon voiced his concerns: “I think historically Florida Mayhem have always squared up well into our Reinhardt composition but we’ve improved a lot. If possible I would like to avoid playing them.”
Hadi echoed this sentiment but remained defiant: “If I could choose one to avoid it’s Florida. But still, I really don’t mind playing them. Almost every team that’s here is a different challenge and they’re going to have a different plan and a different way to beat the challenge we pose.”
Given the incentive to not practice against direct opposition, the Spitfire’s scrim schedule afforded them additional insights into the power levels of the other side of the bracket.
When asked about the most underrated team at the event, Hadi shared: “We always feel confident whenever it’s a Zarya meta because Reinhardt is really good against her. When that was said to be meta we weren’t worried at all. But Zarya is pretty good right now and if someone can make it work, it’s Hanbin. The most underrated team right now is for sure Dallas.”
The Spitfire is set to rematch against the Boston Uprising who had sent them to the lower bracket of group play during their first match of the competition.