Call of Duty

Rise Nation reveal plans to become first Call of Duty League expansion team

by Jacob Hale
MLG

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Rise Nation, who won several championships during the CWL era of Call of Duty esports, could potentially be the first expansion team to be joining the Call of Duty League.

In the first year of the CDL, twelve teams are participating, with organizations formerly known for their prevalence in Call of Duty being joined by others that are new to the scene, such as Misfits Gaming’s Florida Mutineers.

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That said, there were many more organizations and investment teams looking to book their spot in the Call of Duty League, and apparently interest hasn’t died down throughout the course of the league’s first year, with it being believed that a number of teams are still looking to get involved.

rise nation win cwl seattle
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Rise Nation saw a lot of success in Call of Duty, particularly in the World War II season.

One of those teams appears to be Rise Nation, who won five championships between the Black Ops 3 and World War II competitive seasons.

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In an interview with ESPN Esports, Rise co-owner and founder Kahreem Horsley spoke about their rebranding and, more importantly, their future plans.

"We do want to move on Call of Duty, as far as the CDL goes," Horsley said. "We've had talks with them, dating back to last year and as recently as a few months. We're just getting our marbles all in the right basket so we can take aim at securing a spot for that league specifically. We're not going to restrict ourselves to that, but that's our first target."

Co-founder and Tennessee Titans lineman Rodger Saffold also spoke about it, saying that at first it “just wasn’t the right time to get into franchising," but that "we feel like we have a plan and a structure to get back into that scene.”

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slasher playing cod for rise nation cwl
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Rise Nation's CoD run finished in despair, as they crashed out as favorites at CoD Champs 2018 in 13-16th place.

So far, no other organization has publicly spoken about their plans to get involved in CDL 2021, the second season of the CoD League, so in Rise we might be looking at the first official expansion team.

This is particularly interesting as it raises questions over which kind of players they might pick up: the org has a long, storied history with Toronto Ultra substitute Daniel ‘Loony’ Loza, meaning rostermania could get very interesting.

Whether they even join the league remains to be seen, but Call of Duty fans might be happy to see an old name cropping up once again.

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