The Minnesota ROKKR have replaced assault rifle player Mike “MajorManiak” Szymaniak with former amateur Eli “Standy” Bentz. In a day that’s also seen the L.A. Thieves drop a veteran for an amateur, the young guns are starting to earn their spots in the Call of Duty League.
The writing was on the wall for Minnesota following the Toronto Ultra Home Series. The team has underperformed up to this point, only winning 18% of their Hardpoints maps and 50% of their Controls maps. Moreover, they were swept in both of their matches at the Toronto homestead.
The ROKKR’s most noticeable issue has been the team’s lack of speed. While Dillon “Attach” Price and Preston “Priestahh” Grenier are two incredibly fast players, the team’s two assault rifle players (MajorManiak and Lamar “Accuracy” Abedi) are the polar opposite. By benching MajorManiak for a fast SMG player like, the team hopes their woes will turn around.
Standy has made waves in the CDL Challengers scene this year, most recently winning the #9 Challengers Cup with a rag-tag roster of former pros and amateurs. Since the beginning of Black Ops Cold War, teams have scouted him heavily, but he wasn’t signed until now.
However, with week one of Stage 2 in the books, multiple teams are hopping on the amateur trend. The L.A. Thieves signed Carlos “Venom” Hernandez earlier today and the London Royal Ravens brought on Paul “PaulEhx” Avila for the Toronto homestead. It’s safe to say organizations are starting to take notice of young amateurs who are performing well in Challengers.
So far, teams that have signed amateurs to their starting rosters have done well. New York, who signed Conor “Diamondcon” Johst, are near the top of the standings and London won their first game of the season with PaulEhx in the lineup. It’s unclear if Minnesota will see similar success with Standy in the lineup, but it’s obvious the team is hoping for a similar result.
MajorManiak now heads to the bench and will supposedly look elsewhere for a starting spot.
“I’m gonna keep my head down and continue grinding,” MajorManiak wrote on Twitter. “I will rightfully earn my spot again back in the CDL, wherever that may be.”
The Minnesota ROKKR and the rest of the CDL are back in action this Thursday, March 28, for Week 2 of Stage 2.