Close Menu

Hit enter to search or ESC to close

Original Reporting
On the Ground


The entire Ultra squad had a look of devastation on their faces at the end of the Stage 5 Major. They were on the receiving end of the greatest comeback in Call of Duty history after Minnesota Røkkr pulled off a best-of-nine reverse sweep.

“It’s a bad loss and everyone was hurt by it, everyone still is hurt by it,” said Ben “Bance” Bance after beating Dallas to secure a spot in the grand final at Champs. “We have to take the positives from it. There’s a lot of things that we needed to learn and I honestly think that’s one of the best losses a team could ever have.”

Immediately after the loss all players on the Ultra took a break from social media and Call of Duty for a few days. Everyone was piling it on, especially after the Ultra Twitter page made fun of their opponents before the comeback.

Toronto Ultra champs
Two best-of-five matches on Champs Saturday has taken its toll on Ben “Bance” Bance. | Provided by Call of Duty League

That loss couldn’t get in the way of Champs

Bance said that they’ve been excelling in Search and Destroy since that loss. Hardpoint hasn’t gone as well for them, but they know that every best-of-five series comes down to Search and Destroy.

“The famous saying is that Search and Destroy wins championships,” Bance said. “The mode is crucial.”

History is repeating itself at Champs. During their wild Stage 2 Major losers bracket run, Toronto beat Minnesota and Dallas before beating Atlanta in the grand finals. That’s exactly what happened at Champs, even if the matches were closer this time around.

“We know what the format’s like, how long the matches can be,” Ultra star and MVP nominee Cameron “Cammy” McKilligan said. “We just need to play our game and see how it goes.”

Toronto Ultra vs Atlanta FaZe for the Champs trophy

All four members of the Ultra were exhausted after the matches on Aug.21. They know they have a monumental task ahead of them. Atlanta hasn’t dropped a single map at this event throughout the two matches they’ve played. Dallas and New York couldn’t bounce back after McArthur “Cellium” Jovel led his team to two shutout victories.

Despite most players saying that the best-of-nine format gives an advantage to the losers bracket team, Bance doesn’t think that’s the case. There are no other matches to warm them up on Championship Sunday so they won’t be hot like they have been at previous grand finals.

Toronto Ultra champs
Toronto Ultra have been one of the most consistent teams in the league since the Stage 2 Major. | Provided by Call of Duty League

“There’s been an advantage the whole year in terms of vetoes,” Bance said. “At first everyone questioned if it was an advantage, but now near the end of the year you can really tell. [Atlanta] gets all the vetoes, all the good sides on certain maps.”

Bance was starting to lose his voice during our conversation and Cammy looked exhausted after both Dallas and Minnesota took them to a Game 5. The boys in blue felt good after enacting revenge on the Røkkr, but they knew the weekend wasn’t over at that point.

“We need to relax, get something to eat and reset the mind,” Cammy said.

I asked him what he wanted to eat. “Something unhealthy,” he said.


Aron Garst looks at esports from a different point of view by tackling the ways games are molded and broken by players around the world. He covers Call of Duty, Fortnite, Super Smash Bros, and everything else for Upcomer. You can read his previous work at WIRED, Rolling Stone, ESPN and elsewhere. Rise up red sea.


https://www.upcomer.com/wp-content/themes/upcomer