• Dallas Fuel won against Washington Justice (3-2) the last time they met
  • Washington Justice have been rounding into form
  • The current game meta could make this match much closer than expected

The 2021 Overwatch League (OWL) Playoffs kick off on Tuesday, September 21, with the opening four rounds of play featuring top teams competing for the lion’s share of the $3,200,000 prize pool. The final week of OWL action will see eight OWL teams compete in a double-elimination bracket, and if last year’s playoffs are any indication, we should expect the unexpected.

Today, we will take a look at a match between Dallas Fuel and Washington Justice, who last met in July, when Dallas Fuel edged out a 3-2 victory. As the score would suggest, the bout was very tight, and we can expect another close affair on Tuesday.

Fuel vs Justice Matchup at a Glance

  • Sport: Overwatch League
  • Teams: Dallas Fuel at Washington Justice
  • Where: Online (Hawaii)
  • Date: Tuesday, September 21, 4:00 p.m.
  • Betting Odds: Fuel -357 | Justice +250 (at DraftKings)

Fuel Preview: Individually Much Stronger

Dallas Fuel fished the regular season as Western champions, with a 11-5 record and a solid +14 map differential. Even though they ended the year tied with Los Angeles Gladiators and Atlanta Reign, the Fuel accumulated more points (17) than their regional rivals, who managed only 14 and 13.

That is mainly due to Fuel’s strong performances at the tournaments. Dallas Fuel won OWL – May Melee, placed runners-up at OWL – June Joust and pocketed a bronze medal from the OWL – Summer Showdown.

The Fuel have proven that they have a higher ceiling than the Justice, as evident from their regular-season results. However, that does not necessarily mean that they will have an easy time on Tuesday.

When Dallas Fuel clashed with Washington outfit in July, they could have easily lost and were somewhat lucky to walk away from Control – Nepal with 2-0. Some may argue that Washington overperformed on the day; I would say that it was more Justice showing that they can be good rather than it being a one-off performance.

Justice Preview: Favourable Meta Could Help

Although Dallas Fuel are a much better team overall, the current meta favours Washington Justice, making this match potentially much closer than expected. The meta effectively allows the Justice to hide their weaknesses and play around their strengths, and while the same holds true for the Fuel, situations like that usually favour the underdogs.

On the topic of Dallas Fuel fielding better individual talent, their players have shown more, but comparing the teams’ key DPS players in Yeong-han “SP9RK1E” Kim for Dallas and Gui-un “Decay” Jang for Washington, there isn’t a lot to set them apart.

Much of the same holds true for the teams’ Tank players, so when it comes to individuals who play the most critical role in the teams’ preferred style of play, you couldn’t say that one squad is stronger than the other.

Odds & Free Betting Analysis for This Overwatch League Game

This match is not so much about the teams’ strengths but rather about their weaknesses. With this, we’re mostly looking at Washington Justice’s Sung-won “Assassin” Kim, who has had some very underwhelming showings over the season but has picked up the pace during the knockout stage.

If he can keep his fire going heading into the playoffs, the Justice will be hard to beat, but if he returns to his old way, I wouldn’t be surprised if Justice stumbles at the first hurdle. Assassin’s impact on this match shouldn’t be overlooked, as he alone can make or break his team’s chances to make a deep run.

The second factor that concerns me and effectively makes Dallas Fuel a better team is Washington Justice’s support lineup, which has yet to prove that they’re at the level needed to compete for the title. If Dallas and Washington play a similar style, the game should tip in favour of the Fuel, simply because they have better support players, granted we can safely assume that the Justice will have something planned to counter that.

There are many “what ifs” for this match, and while Dallas Fuel are a safer pick, I don’t expect to see a one-sided affair. Washington Justice have the tools to put up a fight, and assuming Assassin can step up, they should be more than capable of winning at least two maps and potentially force a five-map series.

Fuel vs Justice Pick

  • KnupSports.com Free Betting Pick: Washington Justice +1.5 maps +100 (at DraftKings)

Be sure to check out our other free picks and betting plays to bet on today!