It’s time for kickoff! The Call Of Duty League is hosting their first event of the year, and it’s an in person LAN one at that! We’re very excited for it, even being a preseason battle that won’t count in the standings, to the point we’re going! That being said, we want you to have all the info available, from where it is, to getting tickets, and of course, some of the spicy storylines. Check out all the info below, and stay frosty.
Where is it?
The 2022 Call Of Duty Kickoff Classic presented by Zenni Gaming will be taking place at the Esports Stadium Arlington in Texas.
When is it?
This event will take place over a weekend as per most Call Of Duty League matches. It will be January 21st through the 23rd, with the doors opening at 2pm and the games beginning at 3pm, except for Saturday’s and Sunday’s at 4pm.
What is the format?
This will be a single elimination tournament (lose you’re out, win you keep going), and the league is featuring all twelve teams in the matchups. The winner will be the last team standing after the smoke clears on Sunday.
Can I get tickets? Where?
You can buy tickets here. If you aren’t able to attend, you can also watch all of the matches on the Call Of Duty League YouTube channel. What’s really cool is rewards are back for watching them there, so definitely link your accounts via YouTube (instructions here).
Now, onto the spicy storylines and hot takes!
- Can Atlanta Faze do it again? This is just a preseason tournament yes, but you don’t want to show weakness. Faze finished the year 33-5 in the regular season, as well as the winners of 3 of the 5 majors and the champions of the Call Of Duty Superbowl. But, this is a new game, and even though they’ve looked disgusting in limited looks at Call Of Duty: Vanguard, some frustrations they’ve had with the game along with a rise in talent among other teams could spell a few more losses. Some may call them a dynasty already, but you get the feeling they expect more of themselves before they take that crown.
- Will the fusion of Dallas Empire and Optic Chicago into Optic Texas work? On paper this is one of the strongest squads in the league, lead by one of the premiere talents in Scump. This team should be different, but it seems like we say that every year and watch them struggle. There are a lot of personalities on this squad, so you have to wonder if things start badly if it will affect them. The last tournament they won was waaaaaaay back before COVID in London, and somehow expectations aren’t any lower than Champs winners in 2022. Starting strong in this tournament might matter more than we think.
- Is Toronto Ultra going to stay relevant? I think personally this is a disgusting lineup, but without any changes and with greater competition, will they be able to be as deadly as before? A lot depends on the evolution of Insight, their rookie of the year AR, as well as if Bance can be as effective as he was after the first stage of the Cold War season. If those two things line up, I don’t see why superstars Cammy and CleanX don’t round out a championship level team.
- After tearing it apart and putting it back together, are the New York Subliners going to live up to their potential? The team underwent quite the shakeup at the beginning of last year, with Hydra held up in joining the team and having to turn to Asim when Zooma had to suddenly retire. This year they blew it all up again (at least by choice), returning Hydra and Clayster but adding CrimSix and Neptune. These players have the chance to be an incredible team, but if things don’t go their way you have to worry about similar problems as last year when Clayster suddenly left the team because of mental health issues. Can Crim and Clay help each other stay sane?
- Both Los Angeles teams in the Thieves and Guerillas turned over their squads similar to New York, but is it going to do them any good? You have to assume Octane and Envoy add a lot to the Thieves, but is it really better than SlasheR and Huke? Similarly, does the Guerillas spending spree and bringing in a bunch of big names help them take it to the next level this season? Time will tell, but both of them feel on the verge of big shakeups if the first two stages aren’t as kind as they’d hope.
- The bottom six could really go anywhere. I fully expect the Minnesota Rokkr and Seattle Surge to overachieve at the start at least, with the newly minted Boston Breach and London Royal Ravens right behind them. Florida Mutineers seem very volatile, with a team that could completely surprise us with top four finishes but more than likely will blow up their team after multiple one and dones at the Majors. One thing I think we all can agree on, poor Paris seems doomed to sit at the bottom, bringing in a team of what seems like minimum salary veteran players who have a low ceiling but higher floor than most rookies.
Bold Predictions for this event:
- Boston surprises us all and makes it to the semifinals and takes Atlanta to a map 5.
- Optic trashes Thieves but loses to Ultra… again.
- Faze win the whole thing, 3-1 or 5-2 (I’m unsure on if the Finals are best of 5 or 7). Not sure if that’s really a bold prediction, but I think Faze may phone it in because it’s a preseason event and look vulnerable at the start.
That’s it for the Kickoff Classic! Stay tuned to Gaming Trend for our takeaways as the event takes place, and we’ll do our best to bring you content here and on our YouTube channel! You can follow the league both live and after hours on the official Call Of Duty League YouTube channel right here. If you want to jump into the game, check out CallOfDuty.com, and if you want to know more about it first, check out our review right here.