Call of Duty

Top 5 pro players in Call of Duty: Black Ops 4

Published: 20/Aug/2019 14:12 Updated: 22/Aug/2019 17:49

by Joe Craven

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With the curtain down on Black Ops 4’s Call of Duty World Championship, we make our picks for the best players of Treyarch’s latest CoD title. 

Black Ops 4 is reaching the end of its life cycle, with the CoD community gearing up for Modern Warfare. We are casting our minds back over the last competitive season, to pick out the top five players. 

Last week’s CWL Championships saw eUnited secure back to back major wins, but how many of the eUnited roster make our list? Who was the most consistent player? Who was the most valuable player on their team? All this and more is considered, but of course, it’s always subjective.

CWLeUnited made it two major wins in a row, as they beat 100 Thieves in the Grand Finals.

5) Envoy

1.15 overall K/D

Twitter: Gen.GEnvoy made his name on Gen.G, with an aggressive SMG play style.

We kick off our list with Dylan ‘Envoy’ Hannon. The SMG slayer started his season at Midnight Esports, but his impressive performances earned him a switch to Gen.G in March 2019. 

Envoy was undoubtedly the strongest member of Midnight, highlighted in the fact he was the only player retained when they overhauled their roster in December 2018.

It was after making the switch to Gen.G where Hannon really shone, invigorating the roster to perform well above expectations, securing back-to-back second-place finishes at CWL Anaheim and CWL Finals. At the latter, Envoy put up a staggering 1.28 overall K/D. 

A poor finish at the CWL Championships does detract somewhat from the incredible season Envoy has had, but he has certainly made a name for himself as CoD enters franchising. 

4) aBeZy

2 tournament wins, 1.08 overall K/D

Instagram: aBeZyaBeZy celebrates eUnited’s CWL Finals win back in July.

Our pick for number four is Tyler ‘aBeZy’ Pharris. Despite not having placed above 9-12th during CoD: WWII, aBeZy did enough individually to become part of a strong eUnited roster. This was a roster that would only become stronger over the course of the Black Ops 4 season. 

Despite occasionally being overshadowed by fellow SMG Simp, 19-year-old aBeZy put up some ridiculous numbers of his own. As eUnited won CWL Finals in July, aBeZy managed a 1.16 respawn K/D. 

However, it was at the CWL Championship where the young star really came into his own. He finished second in respawn K/Ds, putting up an insane 1.35, and proving he was one of the very best with a Saug in his hands. 

To go from a best finish of 9-12th to world champion emphasizes the phenomenal season aBeZy has had, and he deservedly comes in at number four on our list. 

3) Dashy

1 tournament win, 1 MVP, 1.28 overall K/D

MLGDashy won MVP at CWL Las Vegas, back in December.

Brandon ‘Dashy‘ Otell is our pick for number three. He was considered something of a gamble when the GreenWall picked him up last summer. Despite coming off a strong individual WWII season, the Canadian never been a part of a roster where winning was an inherent expectation.

However, he rapidly surpassed expectations, winning the MVP award at CWL Las Vegas, where he pushed OpTic Gaming to their only major tournament win of the season. He finished Las Vegas top of almost all stats, with a ridiculous 1.44 K/D. 

It wasn’t just the early season where Dashy shone though. Despite lackluster placements from OpTic Gaming, Dashy was consistently the stand-out player, taking down enemy teams for fun with his trademark Maddox / Tempest combination. He finished the season with a 1.28 K/D across all events, and did not have a negative tournament once.

He became known to Greenwall fans as a ‘human highlight reel’, a nickname which was no more epitomized than in his CWL Champs destruction of Enigma6, in which he killed all five opponents in a matter of seconds. 

Saying the gamble paid off would be a gross understatement. The Greenwall has found an incredible player who will star long after the OpTic name has faded from the forefront of competitive gaming.  

2) Simp

2 tournament wins, 2 MVPs, 1.24 overall K/D

Twitter: eUnitedSimp’s rookie year is the most remarkable of any CoD player.

Coming in at number two is Chris ‘Simp‘ Lehr. Despite being just 18 years old, Simp has blown fans away with the most incredible rookie season any CoD pro has ever had.

eUnited fans were divided when the organization replaced two-time world champion Jordan ‘JKap‘ Kaplan with Simp, an up-and-coming SMG star. No one’s questioning the move anymore. 

While replacing JKap is no easy feat, Simp more than stood up to the task. At CWL London, his first-ever professional tournament, he led K/Ds in all game modes other than Control, where he came in second overall. 

However, this was just the start for Simp. He led eUnited to wins at CWL Finals and CWL Champs, winning MVP at both. He finished Champs second in overall K/D, putting up an incredible 1.35 overall. 

Simp stunned fans all over the world with his insane sniper skills, including an incredible three-piece in the Winners semi-finals, which features in our top 10 plays of CWL Champs. 

Simp ended the series versus Units with a 3.15 K/D across all three game modes, an unprecedented achievement in Call of Duty. The best SMG player in Black Ops 4, Simp represents a tangible shift towards new superstars. 

1) Octane

2 tournament wins, 1 MVP, 1.18 overall K/D

MLGOctane has starred for 100 Thieves this year.

Our pick for number one is Samuel ‘Octane‘ Larew. The AR superstar has been in and around the best players in the world since Infinite Warfare, but it’s hard to deny his phenomenal talents on Black Ops 4. 

Despite being part of a stellar 100 Thieves roster, Octane has stood out as the indisputable best player on all of Black Ops 4. A wizard with an ICR, Octane led 100 Thieves to two major tournament victories over the course of Black Ops 4.

The first of these majors, CWL London, saw Octane put up a 1.29 K/D overall. At the second, CWL Anaheim, he put up a 1.17, anchoring 100 Thieves’ back to back victories.

Octane finished the season with a slightly lower K/D than Simp, but featured at more tournaments. Also, like Dashy, he never had a negative tournament, reinforcing the consistency with which he anchored 100 Thieves. 

Despite their second-place finish at CWL Champs, Octane stood out as 100 Thieves made an incredible Losers Bracket run. Octane oversaw an incredible reverse sweep of FaZe Clan to avoid an early elimination, including an insane 1 vs 3 clutch in Map 5. 

While a clutch of this caliber would see most players react ecstatically, Octane merely shrugged it off with his trademark nonchalance. 

Octane finished Champs with a 1.27 K/D, and came so close to winning a first world championship ring. The best Call of Duty player in the world, Octane is thoroughly deserving of our number one spot. 

Simp’s sniper three piece is number 3 in our top ten plays of CWL Champs, while Octane’s 1v3 clutch is number 6. 

Who misses out? 

Narrowing down the best Call of Duty players in the world to just five was no easy task, and means a number of incredible players miss out. Arguably number one on our honourable mentions is Alec ‘Arcitys’ Sanderson, whose ICR skills were key to eUnited’s world championship-winning campaign. He finished top of the overall K/D list at champs, with a 1.36. 

Other honourable mentions include Preston ‘Priestahh’ Greiner and Matthew ‘FormaL‘ Piper. Both experienced varying success in terms of tournament wins, but particularly impressed at CWL Champs. 

Similarly, Splyce stars Donovan ‘Temp’ Laroda and Daniel ‘Loony’ Looza were both consistently playing at an elite level, but failed to capitalize in terms of results, and a lowly top 16 at Champs means it’s ultimately a season to lament.  

eUnited/Instagram: PriestahhArcitys and Priestahh were seriously impressive this year, but just missed out on our list.

Pierce ‘Gunless’ Hillman looked back to his best at the start of the season, but it’s no secret that his performances stagnated at best, and diminished significantly at worst. After joining Envy, Gunless seemed unable to take over matches like we’re used to seeing from him. His performances at the start of the year still deserve a mention however.

We round off our honorable mentions with Dylan ‘Dylan’ Henderson and Cuyler ‘Huke’ Garland. Dylan played as Flex for Team Reciprocity, pushing them to a respectable 5-6th finish at CWL Champs. Huke has been one of the best players in both Black Ops 4 and WWII, but a failure to win any major tournaments since his return to competitive CoD holds him back from competing with the very best. 

MLGBoth Dylan and Huke have had excellent seasons, but didn’t do enough to make our list.

That wraps up our list of Black Ops 4’s best players. Competitive Call of Duty is about to undergo a groundbreaking transition into a franchise league. We expect to see these players star, even as the landscape in which they operate is transformed.

What do you make of our list? Tweet us your lists @DexertoIntel on Twitter, to let us know what you’d change!

Call of Duty

How Paris Legion missed CDL’s golden opportunity

Published: 20/Jan/2021 17:03

by Jacob Hale

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Paris Legion were the last team to announce their Call of Duty League roster and, while coach Dylan ‘Theory’ McGee tells us he’s confident in his squad, it’s hard to believe they made the most of their opportunity.

Don’t get me wrong: the players they’ve pulled together have all shown their ability throughout the course of their careers. These are players that have won championships in the past and competed at the top, as well as a young gun who, right now, is an unknown entity… But has looked more than capable of holding his own in the amateur ranks.

Paris Legion’s 2021 CDL roster

  • Ulysses ‘AquA’ Silva— AR
  • Nicholas ‘Classic’ DiCostanzo — SMG
  • Luis ‘Fire’ Rivera — Flex
  • Matthew ‘Skrapz’ Marshall — SMG
  • Dylan ‘Theory’ McGee — Coach

So Classic, Skrapz, AquA, and Fire will be donning the Paris colors heading into the 2021 CDL season — and this is definitely a roster worth talking about.


Watch Now: Best Cold War Players in Call of Duty League S2


Paris Legion: Too little, too late?

Paris’ slow decision-making was a huge talking point for both Call of Duty fans and players without a team. This begs the question: did the Legion miss a golden opportunity when constructing their roster?

Notably — and not unmissed by literally everybody involved with the CDL — Paris were the very last team to announce their roster. For a long time, it was unclear how long we would have to wait, with other teams already fully announced and scrimming to learn the game inside out.

While some were annoyed about the speed at which Paris were making their decisions, many of us saw it as the team taking a big opportunity to see which players were the best, waiting it out to find the form players and take advantage.

Lo and behold, that wasn’t quite what happened. With Challengers teams and individual players shining in Black Ops Cold War, the Paris roster seems to pale in comparison.

Coach Theory on forming Paris Legion

The reaction to Paris’ team was as expected. It looks very much like a group of misfits lumped together and told to make it work. While other CDL teams are formed with a mixture of cohesion and raw talent in mind, with partnerships that have been proven to work, this is one that has boggled the minds of fans.

Speaking exclusively with Dexerto, Paris coach Dylan ‘Theory’ McGee explained how he put together the team. “To me, I started with the best player available in my opinion which was Skrapz,” he said of the Brit. “From there, I wanted an AR who has competed with the best in Championship situations and Aqua fit that perfectly. He might be overlooked by the casuals, but his talent is unreal and I hope it gets displayed the way I think it will throughout the season.”

Explaining the acquisition of Fire, Theory had similarly high praise. “Everyone has taken notice of the swing in young potential the last few years, so we took a chance on the young gun Fire. His coachability and potential while only competing for six months was extremely impressive.”

Finally, Theory says that “nobody brings more to a team than Classic,” calling him a “proven winner on multiple titles and the ultimate role player and teammate.”

While McGee speaks so highly of his team, and it’s hard not to buy into his enthusiasm, there’s no denying that this is a mix of players nobody could have seen coming, and one that expectations aren’t set particularly high.

Team Kaliber CWL trophy Theory kenny accuracy chino
MLG
Theory (far left) knows what it takes to win championships, and hopes this Paris side can do so too.

Call of Duty League’s crushing pressure

Plenty of rumors have spread regarding Paris’ decision-making. In particular, the suggestion that they were simply looking to spend as little money as possible.

These four players are already on the back foot. While fans waited with bated breath before the Paris Legion announcement, they immediately wrote off this side once it came out — and the pressure was instantly on these players to prove their legion of doubters wrong.

They’re joining a franchise with a terrible record in its first season, and are already being looked at by many as bottom-of-the-pack fodder before the season is even underway.

In Activision’s Call of Duty League, we’ve seen how one bad season can impact a player’s career. Huge names such as Jordan ‘JKap’ Kaplan and Ian ‘Enable’ Wyatt retired after Modern Warfare, despite being top players previously.

And my fear is that one poor season with Paris Legion could be the icing on the cake for some of these players. So it’s important that this band of CDL castaways hit the ground running, to ease the pressure as much as possible.

Paris Legion CDL 2020
Call of Duty League
The 2020 Paris Legion team had an extremely disappointing season, going months on end without a win.

What about the alternatives?

Perhaps the biggest cause for concern is that there were so many good, viable options in the run-up to Paris’ roster finalization. With all the time they had, so many of us expected them to simply scout out the cream of the crop that remained.

If you look at the Challengers Cups, WestR have won every North America tournament so far. Proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that they’re ready to rub shoulders with the biggest names in the Call of Duty League.

Similarly, there are a number of top pros sitting out that have arguably been more impactful than some of the Legion members of late. Skrapz’s brother Bradley ‘Wuskin’ Marshall had a solid Modern Warfare season — undeniably better than that of fellow main AR, AquA, who struggled to get much going with LA Guerrillas.

Zack ‘Drazah’ Jordan played for OGLA in the latter months of the 2020 season and helped turn that team’s fortunes around. He’s currently occupying the bench for LA Thieves, but surely he’s the exact type of up-and-coming star that could slot into a team such as Paris?

And if Paris were looking for viable slaying competitors from Challengers, Fire is a genuine talent and will have a great career ahead of him, but it’s unclear why he would be first choice. The WaR team of 2020 proved themselves as the best Challengers team in Europe. Surely the likes of David ‘Dqvee’ Davies and Marcus ‘Afro’ Reid would have been worth a call, if not that WestR side?

Atlanta FaZe academy squad CDL 2020
Twitter: ATLFaZe
The former Atlanta FaZe Academy side, currently dominating Challengers as WestR, could definitely go toe-to-toe with CDL’s finest.

Paris Legion… The underwhelming underdogs?

This isn’t all to say that the Paris team will be bad. For all we know, they could turn out to be a sleeper team that storms the league. I for one quietly expect them to perform much better than the last Paris Legion iteration and turn a few heads in the process. Theory is similarly confident, hopeful we can “get back to LAN events where we can see players in their true form.”

That said, the amalgamation of talent on this lineup simply seems random with no clear identity to it. While Paris Legion could have brought in the best Challengers team on offer, they opted for a group that can’t provide much positive fanfare and set low expectations for the coming season’s performances.

Paris had the opportunity to make a nuclear signing and become the underdogs that Call of Duty fans love to cling on to. But instead, they picked up a roster that is similarly as uninspiring as the brand itself.