October 17th, 2018

Overwatch League tweaks schedule, playoffs for 2nd season


By Jake Seiner, The Associated Press on October 10, 2018.

The Overwatch League is adding a play-in tournament to its playoffs and moving its All-Star Weekend to the middle of the season in a series of changes for its second year.

The global esports league will open the 2019 season on Feb. 14. Each of its 20 teams will play 28 matches over four five-week stages at Blizzard Arena in Burbank, California.

The league added eight expansion franchises after its inaugural season and has assigned them to existing divisions. Paris, Toronto, Washington, D.C., and Atlanta will join the Atlantic Division, while Vancouver, Chengdu, Guangzhou and Hangzhou will join the Pacific Division.

Each division winner will make the post-season, as will the next four top teams regardless of division. A play-in tournament will determine two more playoff participants immediately after the regular season.

All-Star Weekend has been moved from after the championship to between Stages 2 and 3.

The Overwatch League is the first global, city-based esports league. It sold out its two-night championship at New York’s Barclays Center in July and aired the opening match of the finals on ESPN, a first in prime time for the traditional sports network.

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