This year’s Call of Duty League Championship event is finally here and with matches just about to get underway, our Reverse Sweep crew of Jonathan ‘Pacman’ Tucker, Ian ‘Enable’ Wyatt, Katie Bedford, and special guest Justin ‘SiLLY’ Fargo-Palmer are here to preview the final Cold War tournament.
For the CDL’s top eight teams, just one final showcase is all the remains in the 2021 season. After months of grinding, the biggest CoD event of the year is finally upon us as Champs is mere hours away.
The four-day event kicks off with two upper bracket and two lower bracket games, with the likes of LA Thieves and Florida Mutineers having just one life from the very beginning.
$1.2 million is up for grabs for the winning squad but the path won’t be easy. To preview the monumental event and make their predictions, our Reverse Sweep crew is back to give you the rundown on Champs.
Clayster returns for NYSL’s Champs run
After taking a break throughout Stage 5, Clayster is officially back in the mix for Champs. The veteran has seen and done it all throughout his illustrious career, including victories at three Champs events. But can he lead yet another squad to the finish line?
“If [NYSL] has any chance of making a run, it had to be with Clay,” SiLLY argued. Although the break came at a challenging time, it may have been “really good” for the team before one final push. “I’m glad he’s back,” the fellow world champ added.
Quick shout out to @Diamondcon_
Missed both CDL & Challengers Champs as a spot starter for @Subliners, while still posting a 0.99 K/D this season.
Consummate professional 👏 pic.twitter.com/sqC9eEgoag
— DEXERTO Call of Duty Esports News (@DexertoIntel) August 13, 2021
“To give them a legitimate chance at winning this thing, it has to be with Clay,” Pacman agreed. Though Enable wasn’t exactly on the same page. While he believes NYSL has more potential with Clay in the lineup, he’s also concerned “the floor is a lot lower.”
With barely a few days of practice upon his return, no one knows how the New York lineup looks with Clay ahead of their biggest event yet.
Will OpTic finally reach their potential in Cold War at Champs?
While Clay’s return highlights one side of the stage, NYSL finds themselves against OpTic in their opening series. Could this finally be where the Green Wall stands tall?
“On the biggest stage of the year, you expect the big dogs to do great,” SiLLY explained. With OpTic clearly the fan favorites going into Champs, he’s confident this will be “their best event of the year.”
They’re good to play at CDL Champs. pic.twitter.com/eZOFHhjLAs
— DEXERTO Call of Duty Esports News (@DexertoIntel) August 16, 2021
Coming off an impressive showing in Stage 5, their “best of the year,” according to Enable, his expectations are high as well. Though they have their work cut out for them. A win against NYSL drops them right into a series against FaZe.
If OpTic is to make the winners finals, they’ll have to take down this year’s best team on the way.
Can ROKKR win back to back LAN events?
After their historic reverse sweep to close out the Stage 5 Major, it’s safe to say ROKKR has all the momentum on their side heading into Champs. But is one good performance enough to invoke confidence in our Reverse Sweep crew?
“Their [Stage 5 Major] was kind of ridiculous,” Pacman said. “It’s hard to call it a fluke because they beat everyone.”
If they can carry that energy forward, Champs could very well be theirs for the taking. But while they “have all the momentum,” predicting them as Champs winners is still a “shot in the dark” from SiLLY’s point of view.
Players to watch at Champs
A total of 12 games are set to be played throughout the full Champs event. At a maximum, any team from the upper bracket can play in six of those games. But which players will stand out on the run and push their team towards the top?
For SiLLY, it has to be the returning Clayster. “He’s back in the mix, he’s back on LAN with the fans, it’s his environment,” the veteran explained. “I’m expecting him to fry.”
Meanwhile, Pacman couldn’t pick against the most successful player in CoD history, Dallas Empire’s Crimsix. “I feel like Dallas is gonna win Champs so I’m going with Crimsix. Crim played a pretty average Modern Warfare season but at Champs he just turned up. He knows what to do when it matters.”
“People are gonna say I’m biased,” Enable chimed in, before once again backing his boys in the LA Thieves. While they start in the losers bracket already, Enable wants to see Kenny “step up and be that superstar” throughout a huge run to the finals.
CDL Champs 2021 opening matchup predictions
The CDL Champs 2021 winner kit includes… black forces.
May the most nefarious team win 😈 pic.twitter.com/eGS5ewDnWi
— DEXERTO Call of Duty Esports News (@DexertoIntel) August 13, 2021
To get the biggest show of the year underway, we have four huge games set for the first day – two in the upper bracket and two in the lower bracket. This means two squads will be sent packing before Champs weekend even begins.
The very first series pits ROKKR against Empire in what’s sure to be a barnburner. Both Pacman and Enable sided with Empire to get the opening win, while SiLLY picked the Stage 5 winners in ROKKR.
Next up is the highly anticipated NYSL vs OpTic matchup. For this one, all three Reverse Sweep panelists are in favor of the Green Wall. “I don’t think OpTic is gonna lose first round and go into loser’s at Champs,” SiLLY explained.
Bold predictions for the final Cold War event
After a year of shocking upsets and surprising events, it’s only fitting that Champs could be the most unpredictable competition yet.
“I’ve been gassing Minnesota with my bold predictions all year long,” Enable stressed, now ready to “flip the script” on them. “Minnesota loses to Empire, they fall down to LA Thieves, lose to LA Thieves, pack your bags,” he said.
Meanwhile, Pacman joked that the “only big upset” in the entire Champs bracket is “Mutineers winning a match.” Therefore, his hot take is that Ultra will lose two games in a row and have their year come to an unceremonious end.
“I’ve got an OpTic vs ROKKR winners finals for my bold prediction,” SiLLY added.
Which CDL team will win Champs 2021?
TOMORROW: The beginning of the end for the #CDL2021 season.
Who's HYPED for Champs? 🏆 pic.twitter.com/k2lPWEIo47
— Call of Duty League (@CODLeague) August 18, 2021
Last but not least, the Reverse Sweep hosts made their final predictions for the year. When all is said and done, who will be walking away with a shiny new Champs ring on their finger?
“I’ve got Dallas and FaZe running it back in the finals again,” Pacman said. But to pick one true winner, he has Empire winning their second Champs event in a row.
“If I had to pick, I feel like FaZe just doesn’t let that happen again,” SiLLY countered. While the final showdown might be the same as last year, he can’t see FaZe falling short twice.
“I feel like the easy answer is always just FaZe,” Enable added. “They’re the best team this year by far. I’m going FaZe vs Toronto in the finals. I know it’s not a hot take but I want to see them get a win and secure their dynasty.”