Call of duty

Joe ‘MerK’ DeLuca Gives his Thoughts on the Scump Retirement Talk

by Vincent Genova

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Call of Duty caster and former pro Joe ‘MerK’ DeLuca has weighed in on the future of OpTic Gaming’s Seth ‘Scump’ Abner during an interview with Dexerto.

OpTic Gaming failed to meet their lofty standards at yet another major event after crashing out at the CWL Stage 2 Playoffs, leading some to speculate the Scump will not be competing much longer.

Scump even took personal responsibility for OpTic’s performance and looked distraught after the matches.

However, MerK is not ready for the end of Scump’s legendary career.

Do I think he is coming to the end of his career potentially? I hope not.

He gave some of the reasons why he thinks Scump is slowing down and they are not related to a declining skill or talent.

I think it’s just one of those things where, maybe [Scump] doesn’t have as much love for the game as some of the up and coming guys. It is a very tough job, you have to play 5 to 8 hours a day and a lot of those guys get burnt out.

Scump and former teammate Formal had their dedication to Call of Duty questioned during the OpTic Gaming roster shake up, leading to the break up of one of the most successful teams of all time.

Rumors circulated that OpTic was not practicing enough due to everything from personality clashes to bad internet to not liking the game.

Scump was able to fight through the potential CoD fatigue and stay on for the new OpTic roster, MerK thinks his love of competition outweighed any negatives he had with the game.

He even offered advice to the rattled Scump following the self-deprecating tweets.

What would I say to him/ I’d say don’t worry about it. What is this your first time in how many years where you can personally say ‘I costed my team?’... For him to have a performance like this is rare… I think he’ll be fine [for the Call of Duty Championship].

Few are more qualified than MerK to give advice to a CoD star approaching the end of competing, much like Scump, he is a former Champion with OpTic Gaming who had to deal with burnout at the end of his career.

Merk was asked about what went into his decision to retire from competing in 2016.

For me personally, my circle of players was gone. Rambo was gone, Big T was gone, JKap was off winning. The guys you rely on to have your back and put you back on a team, they were gone for me.

If Scump was to get dropped - I don’t think he will… I highly doubt it - but he would have plenty of people to pick him back up and get him on a top team.

The Call of Duty Championships take place on August 15-19 for the final CoD: WW2 event of the year. Scump's future may depend on his Champs placing and how he feels about the next title, Black Ops 4.