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Over this past weekend, the Call of Duty League held its first annual Playoffs event. A prelude to Call of Duty Champs, the tournament went over fairly well with fans. However, there were some technical difficulties that marred the first couple of days. Nonetheless, the final day of the CDL Playoffs was one for the record books. The last match in particular was something to behold. OpTic Gaming and the Chicago Huntsmen faced off in the rubber match of the year and drew in quite the viewership count.

The numbers from Chicago vs. OpTic Gaming CDL playoffs match

The matchup of Chicago vs. Optic Gaming is rooted in history. Of course, the famed T2P duo of Seth “Scump” Abner and Matt “FormaL” Piper competed on OpTic for many years. However, when Immortals Gaming Club bought OpTic, the figureheads of the organization needed to find a new home.

That home was with NRG and the Chicago Huntsmen. Former owner Hector “H3CZ” Rodriguez took over control of the Huntsmen and brought aboard both Scump and FormaL. OpTic themselves put together a fair squad as well that was really putting it together at the CDL Playoffs.

All of this culminated in a final match to determine who would advance to COD Champs. The loser would head home with their season ended. After one of the craziest series in Call of Duty esports history, Chicago claimed victory after Dylan “Envoy” Hannon clutched a 1v1 in game 5, round 11 against TJ “TJHaly” Haly.

cdl optic gaming chicago huntsmen
Image via CODLeague

Whether it was because of the stakes, the history, or the series itself, fans were entrenched in the drama. The peak viewership for the series reached over 156,000 audience members on YouTube. That was by far the most for the entire CDL season.

Hopefully, the CDL can continue to build off this late-season success for COD Champs and 2021.

Make sure to stay tuned to Daily Esports for all Call of Duty League news.


Joey Carr is a full-time writer for multiple esports and gaming websites. He has 6+ years of experience covering esports and traditional sporting events, including DreamHack Atlanta, Call of Duty Championships 2017, and Super Bowl 53.


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