Call of Duty League 2021 preseason power rankings after CDL Kickoff Classic - Dexerto
Call of Duty

Call of Duty League 2021 power rankings after CDL Kickoff Classic

Published: 25/Jan/2021 17:49

by Jacob Hale


The Call of Duty League is set to get underway very soon, with the CDL Kickoff Classic finished and teams showing what we can expect in the coming season.

The return of the Call of Duty League means the return of Dexerto’s power rankings, tracking each team’s performances and highs and lows throughout the season.

While the inaugural 2020 season of the CDL saw teams like Dallas Empire and Atlanta FaZe dominate, fans will be looking to see more sides stake their claim as best team in the game throughout Black Ops Cold War.

With the roster shuffles that occurred during the Call of Duty League offseason, some teams are looking much better off — while others may struggle to find their feet. We’ve considered 2020 performances, our limited information on scrims, team potential and the CDL Kickoff Classic to come up with our pre-season power rankings.

12. Seattle Surge

Different Seattle, but no extra Surge

Loony Seattle Surge CDL
Call of Duty League
The Seattle Surge will be hoping their new roster can drag them off the bottom of the standings this season.

Despite some roster changes that look to be a positive for the team, including the acquisitions of Gunless and Prestinni, Seattle don’t look to be much better off now than they were last season.

On paper, the squad has a limitless skill ceiling, but it seems something still isn’t clicking and it’s an uphill battle for this squad to become legitimate contenders.

11. LA Guerrillas

Close victory over Seattle may spell struggles?

la guerrillas 2021 cdl roster
LA Guerrillas
The LA Guerrillas will be hoping these players can find their 2018 glory.

Featuring three of the four 2018 world champions, LA Guerrillas have some clear firepower on their team, but none of these guys have experienced much success of late.

Apathy had a strong showing at the CDL Kickoff Classic, and him performing well could be key to their hopes of becoming true championship contenders. That said, there’s some way to go for these guys to challenge the best.

10. Paris Legion

Bizarre, but it just might work…

Paris Legion team 2021 CDL skrapz classic aqua fire
Paris Legion
This Paris Legion side has left many fans scratching their heads.

For many fans, this Paris Legion squad doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, a group of players that not many would have put together given the choice.

That said, it doesn’t seem as though they’re struggling like some expected them to. They’ve looked decent in scrims and clutched a 3-2 win over London Royal Ravens at the CDL Kickoff Classic. But we’ll have to give them more time to really judge where they’ll bed in.

9. New York Subliners

ZooMaa’s retirement could spell disaster

zoomaa new york subliners
Call of Duty League
New York Subliners will have to make their way without standout SMG star ZooMaa.

New York Subliners were hit very late with the announcement of ZooMaa’s retirement, as well as an ongoing battle to get French star HyDrA into the US thanks to visa issues.

As such, the squad is hard to rank right now — but we expect them to improve over time and find themselves moving into the upper half of the rankings.

8. London Royal Ravens

Zer0 chance of proving themselves without Trei

Zer0 London Royal Ravens CDL
Zer0’s eventual arrival in the US should help the team out and shift them up the rankings.

London Royal Ravens are having a bit of a tough go of things right now, with Zer0 still stuck in the UK and seemingly unable to find a temporary replacement in the US to fill his spot.

If they manage to get Zer0 out to the States and get some proper practice in, London could become a serious dark horse side. They lost a close 3-2 to Paris Legion at the Kickoff Classic, but it’s hard to tell whether that’s a fair appraisal of London’s ability.

7. Toronto Ultra

Huge dark horse potential in Toronto

Cammy Toronto Ultra CDL
Call of Duty League
Toronto Ultra have serious dark horse potential.

On paper, you wouldn’t look at this Toronto Ultra squad and expect much from them, but they’re all players who have flown under the radar despite proving their insane talents over the years.

If the CDL Kickoff Classic was anything to go by, Bance is in for a serious year, and he could be the key to moving Toronto up the standings.

6. Minnesota RØKKR

On the fringe, ready to win

Minnesota ROKKR roster CDL 2021
Minnesota RØKKR
This brand new ROKKR squad could cause some upsets this season.

Similar to last season, the RØKKR look primed to cause some upsets at the opening events, and their close 3-2 win over Toronto Ultra suggests the ‘Battle of the North’ will rage on into this season as it did the last. These two teams look neck-and-neck, but RØKKR’s win puts them ahead of the Ultra.

While last year, the team slowly fizzled out as the season went on, the new roster has made some serious pickups. As a product, their strong start during the Kickoff Classic has put them in good stead.

5. LA Thieves

Stealing top spot is possible for this squad

LA Thieves Call of Duty League
LA Thieves
Los Angeles Thieves officially entered the CDL on November 6.

LA Thieves had a rough go of things at the CDL Kickoff Classic, with a 3-0 loss to OpTic Chicago that really never looked to be going any other way.

That said, they’re full of talent and their fellow pros clearly rank them quite highly — we just need to see them get some competitive wins before we put them any closer to OpTic or Dallas in our rankings.

4. Florida Mutineers

Can they be the best team in the game?

Skyz Florida Mutineers CDL 2021
Call of Duty League
Skyz was a phenomenal AR in 2020, and expect more of the same this season.

Florida Mutineers suffered a horrendous setback prior to the 2021 season, starting with the sad and sudden loss of standout talent and person, F3ro.

While a phenomenal player, Florida look set to make him proud this season, and could push themselves to enter the championship conversation if they continue to improve. A 3-2 win over Atlanta FaZe at the Kickoff Classic suggests that another potential frontrunner is on the cards.

3. Atlanta FaZe

Rough start for world championship contenders

simp atlanta faze cdl
Call of Duty League
Atlanta FaZe are hoping to one-up their 2020 standings and become world champions this year.

Atlanta FaZe were perennial runners-up for much of the 2020 season, often considered the best team in the game… But when it came to the events that really mattered, they fell short at the final hurdle.

Nonetheless, bringing over Arcitys from Chicago will no doubt elevate the Tiny Terrors, and they will continue to find themselves challenging top teams at each Major this season. Don’t expect to see them losing too much this year, despite their loss to the Mutineers.

2. OpTic Chicago

Forced to settle with 2nd… for now

formal optic chicago
Call of Duty League
This new-look Chicago side has high expectations — and the talent to go with it.

OpTic are back with H3CZ and Scump, and they’re finding the results that the brand has become associated with over the last decade of CoD esports.

They’re natural winners and are going to continue to challenge at the top, just like they did last year as the Chicago Huntsmen. The inclusion of Dashy to the squad seems to be key to OpTic, and if he can find his Black Ops 4 form, we’re looking at an MVP-caliber player.

1. Dallas Empire

The Empire remain on top

dallas empire crimsix call of duty league 2021
Call of Duty League
Crimsix’s Dallas Empire look set for another dominant year.

It would be impossible to put the Dallas Empire anywhere except first right now. They’re the reigning world champions, are performing well in scrims and made short work of New York Subliners at the CDL Kickoff Classic.

By all accounts, it looks like we should be preparing for another big year for Dallas — and these guys won’t relinquish their hold on the top spot too easily.

So, those are our pre-season power rankings for the Call of Duty League 2021 season. The likes of Dallas Empire and OpTic Chicago will likely hover near or at the top for much of the season, but it will be interesting to see which teams can become their closest competitors.

The first official event of the 2021 season is the Atlanta FaZe Home Series on February 11-14, and that will be when teams really put their hard work over recent months into practice and prove how good they are.

Call of Duty

CDL Super Week Day 3: OpTic back to winning ways, Empire & Thieves escape upsets

Published: 25/Feb/2021 1:35 Updated: 25/Feb/2021 1:40

by Albert Petrosyan


The Call of Duty League has combined Weeks 2 and 3 of Stage 1 into one massive Super Week of matches, and everything you need to watch and follow the event live can be found below.

  • OpTic 100-point club Ultra in confident victory.
  • TJHaLy puts up rare numbers as LA Thieves improve to perfect 3-0.
  • Empire clutch up in five-map thriller to avoid upset vs Royal Ravens.
  • Day 4 preview: ROKKR vs NYSL, OpTic vs LAG, FaZe vs Mutineers

Due to the inclement weather in Texas and other parts of the United States causing power outages for a lot of pro players, the CDL opted to combine the Week 2 and 3 matches into Super Week.

Seven straight days of matches will see all 12 teams in action at least three times, and with the Stage 1 Major looming around the corner, this will be the final opportunity for teams to improve their seeding for the $500,000 tournament.

CDL Super Week: Stream

The CDL streams all of its matches exclusively on YouTube, which is where you can also find replays of matches that have already been completed.

CDL Super Week: Schedule

Day 3: Wednesday, February 24

  Match Hardpoint S&D Control Hardpoint S&D
Match Replay Royal Ravens 2-3 Empire LON 250-160 (Moscow) DAL 6-3 (Moscow) DAL 3-2 (Garrison) LON 235-228 (Garrison) DAL 6-4 (Miami)
Match Replay Thieves 3-2 Surge LAT 250-231 (Checkmate) SEA 6-4 (Raid) LAT 3-2 (Raid) SEA 250-222 (Moscow) LAT 6-0 (Moscow)
Match Replay OpTic 3-1 Ultra CHI 250-68 (Checkmate) TOR 6-4 (Raid) CHI 3-1 (Raid) CHI 3-1 (Raid) N/A

Empire & LA Thieves escape upsets, OpTic back to winning ways

Having already suffered an upset loss at Opening Weekend, Dallas Empire barely avoided back-to-back such defeats in their match vs London Royal Ravens. Despite getting completely dominated by the Subliners the day before, London pushed the defending champs to a fifth map before ultimately coming up just short of their first win of the season.

LA Thieves found themselves in a similar situation against the Seattle Subliners, who, just like London, were swept the day before. A back-and-forth affair saw the match pushed to a game five, but that was the most resistance that Surge could offer as LAT dominated the final S&D 6-0, thanks to some historic numbers put up by TJHaLy.

The third and final match of the day saw OpTic Chicago back in action for the first time since their Opening Weekend loss to FaZe. Faced with a stiff test in Toronto Ultra, the Green Wall started off with one of the most dominant Hardpoint wins in CDL history, putting Ultra in the dreaded ‘100-point club.’

The series settled down and got a bit closer after that but OpTic ultimately edged out the victory in four maps, improving to 2-1 on the season while Toronto dropped to 1-2.

Day 4: Thursday, February 25

Match PST EST GMT AEDT (Feb 26)
Game 1 ROKKR vs Subliners 12:00 PM 3:00 PM 8:00 PM 7:00 AM
Game 2 OpTic vs Guerrillas 1:30 PM 4:30 PM 9:30 PM 8:30 AM
Game 3 FaZe vs Mutineers 3:00 PM 6:00 PM 11:00 PM 10:00 AM

Day 5: Friday, February 26

Match PST EST GMT AEDT (Feb 27)
Game 1 Thieves vs Royal Ravens 12:00 PM 3:00 PM 8:00 PM 7:00 AM
Game 2 Ultra vs Legion 1:30 PM 4:30 PM 9:30 PM 8:30 AM
Game 3 Empire vs Subliners 3:00 PM 6:00 PM 11:00 PM 10:00 AM

Day 6: Saturday, February 27

Match PST EST GMT AEDT (Feb 28)
Game 1 FaZe vs Legion 12:00 PM 3:00 PM 8:00 PM 7:00 AM
Game 2 ROKKR vs Royal Ravens 1:30 PM 4:30 PM 9:30 PM 8:30 AM
Game 3 Ultra vs Guerrillas 3:00 PM 6:00 PM 11:00 PM 10:00 AM

Day 7: Sunday, February 28

Match PST EST GMT AEDT (Mar 1)
Game 1 Subliners vs Surge 12:00 PM 3:00 PM 8:00 PM 7:00 AM
Game 2 OpTic vs Mutineers 1:30 PM 4:30 PM 9:30 PM 8:30 AM
Game 3 Empire vs Thieves 3:00 PM 6:00 PM 11:00 PM 10:00 AM

Past scores & daily recaps

Day 1: Monday, February 22

  Match Hardpoint S&D Control Hardpoint S&D
Match Replay Guerrillas 1-3 Mutineers LAG 250-133 (Crossroads) FLA 6-3 (Miami) FLA 3-2 (Garrison) FLA 250-172 (Garrison) N/A
Match Replay Ultra 1-3 FaZe ATL 250-247 (Raid) TOR 6-3 (Raid) ATL 3-0 (Raid) ATL 250-128 (Garrison) N/A

Mutineers get first win of 2021, FaZe stay unbeaten

After losing their season-opener at CDL Opening Weekend, Florida Mutineers’ new-look lineup got their first win of 2021 with a 3-1 victory over LA Guerrillas, who now sit at 1-2. LAG won the first map in dominant fashion before the Mutineers ripped off three straight maps to secure the series.

The second match of the day was a battle of the unbeatens as Atlanta FaZe took on Toronto Ultra. The series started back-and-forth, and if it wasn’t for a clutch break at the end of the Raid Hardpoint, Atlanta may have found themselves down 0-2 early.

But things settled down after the second map as FaZe took games three and four quite comfortably to secure the 3-1 victory. The win now gives the boys in red a league-leading three wins, against just zero losses, while Ultra drop to 1-1.

Day 2: Tuesday, February 23

  Match Hardpoint S&D Control Hardpoint S&D
Match Replay Mutineers 0-3 Legion PAR 222-220 (Garrison) PAR 6-4 (Checkmate) PAR 3-1 (Raid) N/A N/A
Match Replay Subliners 3-0 Royal Ravens NY 250-151 (Garrison) NY 6-1 (Checkmate) NY 3-0 (Checkmate) N/A N/A
Match Replay Surge 0-3 ROKKR MIN 250-163 (Checkmate) MIN 6-5 (Raid) MIN 3-2 (Raid) N/A N/A

Legion & Subliners sweep their way to first wins, ROKKR stay hot vs Surge

After going 0-2 in the Opening Weekend, Paris Legion finally got their first win of 2021 at Super Week, and what a win it was. Despite being underdogs to the Mutineers, Legion pulled off a shocking sweep that featured a rare Hardpoint ending on time.

Following Paris’ script, the New York Subliners also notched their first one in the win column after sweeping London Royal Ravens in perhaps the most dominant performance we’ve seen so far in 2021.

None of the three maps were close, especially the Control, which saw NYSL shred their opponents from start to finish and not give them even a chance at making any sort of comeback. With the loss, Royal Ravens now sit at 0-2 early on in the season.

Rounding off a trio of Day 2 sweeps was Minnesota ROKKR grabbing their second win in a row after taking apart Seattle Surge 3-0. The series was closer than the final scoreline would suggest as Surge did make solid comebacks in both the S&D and Control, only to fall just short in both.

The win is ROKKR’s second in a row after their upset victory over Dallas Empire at Opening Weekend. Meanwhile, Seattle falls to 1-2, suffering already their second sweep this season.

CDL Super Week essentials

CDL Super Week: Format & CDL Points

  • Location: Online
  • Prize Pool: N/A
  • CDL Points: 10 per win
  • Maps & Modes:
    • Hardpoint: Checkmate, Crossroads, Garrison, Moscow, Raid
    • Search & Destroy: Checkmate, Garrison, Miami, Moscow, Raid
    • Control: Checkmate, Garrison, Raid
  • Matches are best-of-five (HP, S&D, Control, HP, S&D)

CDL Super Week: Teams & Rosters

CDL roster spotlight: Minnesota ROKKR’s new-look lineup delivered an upset victory over Dallas Empire at Opening Weekend.

All 12 teams are participating in the Week 2 event, split into the two groups that were drawn at the start of Stage 1. All teams within the same group play each other once during the Stage, for a total of five matches.

Group A

Team Roster
Dallas Empire Crimsix, Shotzzy, Huke, iLLeY
London Royal Ravens Alexx, Dylan, Seany, Zer0
Los Angeles Thieves Kenny, SlasheR, TJHaLy, Temp
Minnesota ROKKR Accuracy, Attach, Priestahh, MajorManiak
New York Subliners Clayster, Asim, Diamondcon, Mack
Seattle Surge Octane, Gunless, Prestinni, Loony

Group B

Team Roster
Atlanta FaZe Simp, Cellium, aBeZy, Arcitys
Florida Mutineers Skyz, Owakening, Slacked, Neptune
Los Angeles Guerrillas SiLLY, Assault, Apathy, Vivid
OpTic Chicago Scump, FormaL, Envoy, Dashy
Paris Legion AquA, Classic, Fire, Skrapz
Toronto Ultra Methodz, Bance, Cammy, CleanX

Make sure to check out our CDL 2021 Season hub for the latest standings, full schedule of all events, a breakdown of the season format, and more.