It’s tournament time! The Call Of Duty League 2022 Major III powered by Bell is here and it looks incredible, hosted by Toronto Ultra at the magnificent looking Mattamy Athletic Centre. Every team here needs a win to solidify their standing for Champs, and we’ve seen some of the best Call Of Duty you’ll see played in this first winners round. And to think this is only day one? Before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s take a look at what happened in these bangers.
New York Subliners vs Seattle Surge
Actual: 3-2 Seattle Surge
- There’s something oddly tentative about New York right now beyond Kismet. They let the Bocage slip away with several slow attacks that gave Seattle a ton of time, and watching the round six of the S&D with PaulEhx and Hydra taking their sweet time going after Accuracy really underlines a missing urgency you thought they had after how they looked in the qualifiers.
- New York needed every bit of Hydra’s 40 bomb to pull out the Berlin Control. Seattle has been ridiculously good in the mode, so it was a big one to keep the Subliners in this one. Hydra only died 23 times as well, and was constantly finessing Seattle with 30 of his kills non-traded.
- The final Search was definitely a heartbreaker. You just knew it’d make it to a round 11, even though New York started off hot and got the big 4-2 lead. While the final 5 rounds may have been exciting Call Of Duty, it was a mental breakdown from NYSL, with them losing man advantage situations multiple times. It was almost always 1v1 situations, and too often New York was on the wrong side of them.
- The opening Hardpoint was close, but the rookies and Mack caught fire in the second half of Bocage and took it. Pred and Mack both had 39 kills, combining for +16 kills, and Sib dropped 36 in a map the Surge won by nearly a hill and a half. What was impressive is that New York was up in the beginning by nearly 60, and before you blinked Seattle turned it completely around.
- A few phenomenal reads followed up by phenomenal gunskill gave the Berlin Search and Destroy over to Seattle. Pred was all over the place with the 12/6 statline, but Sib’s pick of PaulEhx in the 1v1 and Accuracy’s perfect read in the round six 1v2 clutched it for Seattle. They’re feeling themselves right now.
- I know we’ve already talked about the rookies, but Pred started the Tuscan S&D 0/6, and somehow ended it 6/8. That 6/2 turn in the final 5 rounds made a huge difference, including the two that started the comeback in the seventh round. He finished that one by taking a fantastic route through church and charging at Kismet who was trying to play the bomb.
Atlanta Faze vs Toronto Ultra
Actual: 3-1 Atlanta Faze
- With how some of the stat lines you saw at different points of the matches, you certainly wondered if this wasn’t Faze’s match to lose. The crowd was against them, Toronto was looking hot in the Bocage- the stage was set for the most “hated” team in the league to lose. But winners clutch up, and even if they haven’t been as clutch in recent series they dug deep and started to heat up at the right time with momentum that could carry them if they stay focused.
- The Tuscan Control may have been one of the most insane comebacks you’ll ever see. They were down 2-0 rounds and Ultra had the defense, but Faze played it like it didn’t matter. You may not see a faster offensive round, with Faze capping the second point with over 2 minutes left on the clock (for those unfamiliar with Control, that’s a ridiculous stat). The continued on to fry in the final two defenses, even if it got a little hairy a time or two.
- Cellium and Arcitys had the best stat lines with +17 and +11 kills respectively, but it was heroics by aBeZy in the Control that changed this one. He was in the blender the first two maps, dropping -15 kills between them, but turned in a 43/26 score on the Tuscan Control. He “controlled” the map in those final 3 rounds, and was a big reason Bance and CleanX were ineffective. Arcitys seven spree while sitting at 7/16 and jumping to 14/16 also gave the squad the extra umph they needed to finish everything off.
- They hung with Faze on Bocage HP, blasted them on Desert Siege S&D, and then lost full halfway through the Tuscan Control. It’s not like them to lose composure, so I’ll chalk it up more to Faze reaching deep into that championship pedigree to pull this one off, but Toronto definitely did not look as comfortable as they have in the past.
- The weird thing about this match is how ineffective Bance was. His usual style of being annoying (similar to Shotzzy without the movement), just wasn’t doing it, if he could even get into position. With Atlanta shrugging off his efforts, he finished 72/92, -20 kills, and had the least damage of any player in the lobby. He has to do more to open things up for CleanX and his other teammates.
- At least they’ve got Paris tomorrow… or is it Vegas? One plus they can take from this match was how incredibly Insight is playing in Search and Destroy. He was 10-2 and generally made Faze uncomfortable, playing really smart in running an Automaton instead of directly challenging Arcitys sniper. He also seemed to always know where Cellium wanted to be, and it paid off for the Ultra. Also a nice map from Cammy at 8/1.
Florida Mutineers vs Optic Texas
Actual: 3-2 Florida Mutineers
- There wasn’t a glide bomb controversy, and a 5-2 comeback wasn’t necessary. Florida took over the Berlin S&D, finishing off Optic Texas 6-2 and continuing to be the bane of their existence. They’re 3-0 versus Optic on LAN, and one of the few teams to have a positive record versus them.
- “Say the thing!” “As Skyz goes, so do the Mutineers. And Skyz was frying. He made his counterpart in Prolute look silly, with +36 kills to Prolute’s -29. After going down 90-3 in the opening Tuscan Hardpoint you kind of wondered if it was chalked, but Skyz went on a tear, including an insane four piece with the MP-40 where he did his best Shotzzy impression. He put up one of the best scores I’ve seen in a LAN tournament with a 1.49 KD through the 5 map series.
- You have to wonder if things would have leaned Florida’s direction a time or two if this wouldn’t have been a quicker match. Davpadie managed to quick snipe Skyz in the midst of their comeback in the Tuscan S&D, giving Optic man advantage with match point and leaving Dave in a really tough spot. The Berlin Hardpoint was also only won by 7 points and a fantastic hold at P3 by Optic, even with Skyz going off for 41/27. We often forget that big kills in big moments matter more than number of kills, and that’s going to be important as Florida advances this weekend.
- This can’t be what Optic expected after a really good looking stage, especially with Shotzzy owning the map in their final online series. The only player positive was Dashy (go figure), with only +8 kills to go along with 12k damage. The most impressive thing was blowing the opening Hardpoint, which you just wouldn’t have expected from a team that is 7-2 on Tuscan.
- For all his talk during the stage, Prolute didn’t back it up in the opening match. He has time to regain, everyone who lost today does, but he was a clear weak link in this matchup. He finished 69/96, -29 kills, and only 9594 in damage, along with a 1/7 in the Berlin S&D. Considering that is supposed to be his strength, he has to step it up.
- Another surprise in this match was watching Optic lose on Control, especially a Tuscan one where they’d been 12-2. It wasn’t even just that they lost, but how they lost, 3-1 and Florida clutching an opening offense they had literally no right in winning. Optic was up 13-6 in lives, yet managed to go four dead and the Mutineers perfectly play the point stack where they captured it with the lives suddenly at 5-5. Optic have to be more alert in this mode, because nothing was working versus Florida
Los Angeles Thieves vs Minnesota Rokkr
Actual: 3-2 Los Angeles Thieves
- Well, I guess jumping to LAN worked out. They may not have gotten the most kills, but that doesn’t matter if you clutch up when it counts. The kills were perfectly even in the Berlin Hardpoint, but the Thieves managed to keep Minnesota held back to get the points they needed off of the office hill and to force the Game 5. This team has plenty of vets on it who, similar to New York, can make the right plays at the right times.
- A similarly right play was refusing to match Attach in a sniper duel on Desert Siege. We all know that a good sniper can change a map, but playing your reads correctly can counter one. Just like Insight did earlier to Faze, LAT made Rokkr pay in the final map, and they have to feel good given they let one of the better S&D teams only take 3 rounds the whole series. Minnesota seemed stumped, and it seemed like the pressure applied by Envoy and company on the last map worked perfectly.
- As much as you have to give them credit for playing this one tough, it should have been over on the Berlin Hardpoint in a 3-1. LAT straight up blew the Control, allowing the Rokkr to win THREE offenses. Sure, they won two, but all you have to do is get one defense out of the two final rounds. It was another situation similar to Optic, where they had a (even if not as substantial) life lead in the last round yet threw it away for Minnesota to take a 2-1 lead in the series.
- They played tough, but it’s odd to see this team struggle so badly in their best mode (even if that seems to be the way things go at these crazy Majors). Search and Destroy is literally the place Minnesota should feel most comfortable, but they looked out of place and couldn’t figure out what LAT was doing, which is just as odd given the Thieves have struggled in the mode so far. Being outslayed in S&D isn’t always every indicator, but being -23 with only two of your players even during the two maps isn’t what you’re looking for.
- This squad at least does feel at home on the Berlin Control. Around a week after they made Faze look silly with a 6-15 life count capture of the A point to take away Atlanta’s chance to get back in the series, they took three offenses, including another one where they were down on lives in the final round. They’re probably going to have to get good on Tuscan or Gavutu, because people are going to start vetoing Berlin versus them.
- There’s nothing else to say beyond this was a definite disappointment. The Thieves more or less threw a tiebreaker match because they felt better playing Minnesota than Optic. This proved them right, and if they can’t rebound versus the Breach and at least make a deep run in losers, we may look at that 5-0 stage as another substitute fueled honeymoon period like LAGs.
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