As Minnesota RØKKR hosts their first Call of Duty League event, we take a look at the players who will need to take their game to the next level as all of the big dogs take to the stage.
With the top five teams beginning to break away from the pack, the race is on to see who can bag themselves the best seed for the Call of Duty Championship at the end of the year.
Since all five of the league’s top-ranked teams are in action this weekend, the stakes are higher than ever. So who’s destined to leave their mark? We’ve rounded up the six players to keep an eye on.
Ian ‘Crimsix’ Porter (Dallas Empire)
There’s a reason Porter is Call of Duty’s winningest player. Having proven himself across multiple titles, year after year, Crimsix is considered one of the most well-rounded players to touch the sticks.
Moving into a Flex role for the Empire, the 27-year-old veteran has maintained his slayer reputation throughout the season — bested only by Cuyler ‘Huke’ Garland on his squad. Will Crim lead the Empire to a momentous victory at Minnesota? He’ll certainly be looking to even out the score against former teammates, Chicago Huntsmen, who currently have Empire’s number in the head-to-head record.
Matthew ‘FormaL’ Piper (Chicago Huntsmen)
One man who’ll be keen to stand in Crimsix’s way is FormaL. Teamed back up with T2P duo, Seth ‘Scump’ Abner, the multi-FPS veteran hasn’t had the best season of his career in 2020 so far. But, after the squad made a mid-season roster shuffle, the Huntsmen’s Main AR seems to have found his groove again.
At CDL Seattle, FormaL proved that when he’s on his game, no one can really stand in his way. There’s no doubt that Piper was the stand-out performer for Chicago as they clinched their second CDL title of the year.
On top of racking up the most kills for his squad, FormaL clocked in with the highest average hill time in Hardpoint (77 seconds) and a 1.26 K/D ratio in Domination — which saw him round-off a clinic in respawns. Will his form continue heading into RØKKR’s Home Series?
Sam ‘Octane’ Larew (Seattle Surge)
After a turbulent season up until this point, the star-studded lineup of Seattle Surge find themselves one from the bottom of the CDL standings. Despite having one of the most decorated rosters in the league, the squad just doesn’t seem to be clicking.
Multiple roster shuffles haven’t answered Surge’s woes, and one of the greatest to ever grace the franchise in Damon 'Karma' Barlow, recently announced his retirement from the game. So with Nicholas 'Proto' Maldonado stepping into the three-time world champ's shoes, the pressure will fall on Octane's shoulders like never before.
It will be certainly be interesting to see how Surge fare without the experience of Karma in the server... Could this be the change that the squad needed? Or will it be too little too late for Larew and co?
McArthur ‘Cellium’ Jovel (Atlanta FaZe)
One player who seems to have the Flex role on lock, is Atlanta’s Cellium. At times, the FaZe youngster looks like he’s playing another game altogether. Cellium’s more patient playstyle works in tandem with the Tiny Terrors’ gung-ho approach to the game.
As the second-highest slaying player on the FaZe squad, there’s a reason why he was named the CDL Atlanta. You’ll often find Cellium at the heart of Atlanta’s strats, so keep an eye on how teams will look to counter Jovel before anything else.
Reece ‘Vivid’ Drost (Los Angeles Guerrillas)
Sitting at rock bottom of the CDL, the Guerrillas have struggled to find their footing in the league so far. Despite failing to make it out of groups for the sixth consecutive event during Seattle’s Home Series, Vivid was the squad’s silver lining.
In their 3-1 victory over the hosts, Vivid dropped a staggering 44 kills while maintaining a 1.63 K/D. Even after an early exit, his ruthlessness in respawn earned him the highest slayer rating of the tournament. With that in mind, the SMG Slayer will have to carry over his phenomenal form into Minnesota if they’re to stand a chance of making it out of groups.
Adam ‘Assault’ Garcia (Minnesota RØKKR)
While the RØKKR have experienced a dip in form of late, the former world champ has been in stellar form. After suffering from yet another early exit, every member of Minnesota’s squad clocked out with a negative K/D ratio — all bar Assault.
In fact, the story remains the same for the past two events. While the remainder of his squad haven’t quite been on the top of their game in recent weeks, Assault has been a consistent performer. There’s no doubt that the hosts will be turning to Garcia to lead the way this weekend.
In a do-or-die event, each of these players will be looking to go big this weekend. Be sure to keep an eye on each, as they’ll all have something to prove.
Stay tuned into our CDL coverage to ensure that you don’t miss a minute of what is set to be a jam-packed weekend of Call of Duty action.