Article:CDL London 2020 Winners and Losers

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CDL London 2020 Winners and Losers
CDL London was a wild tournament filled with major upsets and dominant showings. Some teams had great weekends, while other teams had performances they probably weren't expecting. Lets take a look at the Winners and Losers from CDL London.


Winners

Dallas Empire: What a weekend for the Empire. Coming into the tournament, no one would have been necessarily shocked to see them win it, but it was the way that they took this tournament which was so impressive. This team dropped one map the entire weekend, losing a Gun Runner Search and Destroy to the Paris Legion in their first match of the tournament. The team looked fantastic overall, dominating every team they played, with each player seeming to step up their gameplay since the last time we saw this team. They’ve set themselves up very well for a chance to grab a top 2 seed for Playoffs this weekend.

By far the biggest improvement was from Crimsix, who stepped up his gameplay to drop a 1.15 overall KD. A lot has been made of C6’s play this season, and it’s easy to look at the stats and direct the blame at him for when this team doesn’t perform well. But his performance this past weekend should serve as a reminder as to why he’s on this team, the veteran leadership he and Clayster provide is something that will never be shown in a stat sheet. And when he’s performing the way he did this last weekend, just a month away from Champs, this team is able to hit another gear.


Paris Legion: So, how many of us actually had the Legion making it this far? I sure didn’t, and the Legion deserve a lot of credit and praise for making it to the Grand Final. Not to mention that they were in the harder group to start the weekend, and had to take out a tough London squad who was just coming off their biggest win of the season. A job well done to all the players for their performance this weekend, it really felt like a total team effort from Paris this entire weekend.

They’ve also set themselves up very well for the Playoffs. In my preview for the London event, I talked about how they needed to make sure they advanced farther than OGLA to give themselves the best chance to grab a top 8 seed. They currently have a hold on the 8th seed, with a 20 point lead on OGLA, and a 30 point lead on the Toronto Ultra. This means that for Paris to lose their current spot at the 8th seed, the Ultra would have to win their own home seires, and OGLA would have to reach the final. A tall task for either team, especially considering the level of competition that will be present this weekend. Making to the Grand Finals has put Paris exactly where they wanted to be coming into last weekend, and while they were swept by the Empire, this should be a stern reminder to the rest of the league that the Legion are not a team to take lightly.


OpTic Gaming Los Angeles: Last week in my preview for the London Series, I talked about how winning the event shouldn’t necessarily be their #1 goal for the weekend. I argued that coming out of the weekend looking better, and for all 5 players to learn how to play with each other was a little more valuable for this team. Of course, I said that assuming that Paris wouldn’t make it very far in the tournament, and that shows you what happens when you assume things.

In their first match of the weekend, they were able to take Florida to a Game 5 Round 11 Search and Destroy. They weren’t able to get the job done however, which resulted in a match up against the Seattle Surge, and this is where they really came into form. In the match with Florida, I would argue that their two new players, Hollow (0.91) and Drazah (1.04), were finally able to give Slasher (0.99) they help that he needed. That wasn’t the case versus the Seattle Surge, as Kuavo (1.06) and TJHaly (1.05) looked like their old selves, dominating the Surge at times to help lead the team to a 3-1 victory. Their re-match against Florida didn’t go their way, but it was still a competitive series. If it wasn’t for one the craziest spawns during their domination match that I’ve seen all year, OGLA might have been able to push the series to another Game 5.

Regardless, this weekend should have given OGLA a confidence boost, and they’ll be looking to go big this weekend, just like Paris did last weekend, at the Toronto Home Series.


Losers


Florida Mutineers: This was kind of a tough weekend for Florida. They were able to make it to another Semi-final, but they certainly didn’t look like the team that won back to back Home Series. They seemed to somewhat struggle with each of their opponents all weekend, having to go to a Game 5 Round 11 in their first match against OGLA, blowing a 2-0 series lead against the London Royal Ravens, and then being swept by Dallas to eliminate them from the tournament altogether. Sure, they looked better in their second match against OpTic Gaming, but this was a team that was looking to get itself back into one of the top two seeds before the Toronto Home Series. To walk away from this tournament with only 20 points is not something we expected to see, and this puts a lot of pressure on Florida to go big this weekend.

We’ll take a closer look at these weekends’ match-ups on Thursday, but remember, their first match of the tournament is against the Dallas Empire, a team that just easily swept them. If they want to secure a top 2 seed for playoffs, they’ll need a much better performance, or else they’ll have to settle for a top 4 seed instead.


New York Subliners: The New York Subliners came into the weekend in a precarious position. They couldn’t improve their place in the standings, as there was no way they could acquire enough points to get a top 4 seed. However, London was hot on their trail for the 5th seed, so they needed to make sure they finish ahead of London. Well, London wasn’t able to overtake them in the standings, but that was in no thanks to New York. After a clean sweep of the Los Angeles Guerillas, the Subliners faced the Dallas Empire, their chance to prove that their win over Chicago in the New York Home Series Final was no fluke. Dallas was able to accomplish a clean sweep over New York, and it really wasn’t close.

Regardless, New York still had a chance to make it to the Semi-finals when they faced off against the Paris Legion. But we all know how that went, another series that wasn’t really all that close. Paris was ready for this match-up, completing a clean 3-0 sweep to knock New York out of the tournament. It’s hard to pinpoint what went wrong the Subliners this weekend. In their match against Dallas, they didn’t have a single player who finished with a positive KD for the series, and when matched up against the Legion, Mack especially seemed to struggle to find a groove. I’m willing to chalk the weekend up to just a bad event for New York, but they don’t play again until the Playoffs. For a team that thrives off momentum, we’ll have to see if this team can get back to how they looked in their own Home Series Final.


London Royal Ravens: All season long, we’ve been waiting for the Ravens to prove that they can beat one of the top teams in the league, and to their credit, they finally did it. They faced off against the Florida Mutineers in the second round of group play, and despite going down 2-0, this team came roaring back to reverse sweep Florida, handing them their first loss since adding Owakening to the team. You had to imagine the team spirits and morale were incredibly high after such a big win.

But it all came crashing down in the Semi-Finals, where they faced off against a Paris Legion team no one expected to see this late into the tournament. This was an incredible back and forth series, with both teams pushing each other to play their best. And yet, when it was all said and done, it was the Paris Legion coming away with a massive win. This was a series that London absolutely had to have, especially coming off such a momentum building upset over the Mutineers. Just when it seemed that London was finally starting to come into their best form we’ve seen from them all year, their season ends at the hands of one the biggest upsets of the year.

For London, you have to walk away with this tournament feeling massively conflicted. You were finally able to beat a top team, only to falter at the worst possible moment. Regardless, London needs to put their loss in the Semi-Finals behind them. The next time we’ll see this team play will be during the Playoffs, where they can’t allow their inconsistent play to show up. Identify the mistakes made against Paris, and walk away from this weekend knowing you proved you belong with the big boys.


Published on 21. Jul 2020
Written by shasiif / Twitter - @shasiif


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