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The Call of Duty League Stage 1 Major begins today, putting $500,000 and a massive amount of CDL points on the line.. This is the season’s first major event and lasts from March 3-7.

Up to this point, Stage 1 of the Call of Duty League has only featured single matches worth 10 CDL Points each. Multiple interesting storylines have formed during the first weeks of competition, including rekindled rivalries and some teams performing well beyond their expectations. At the Major, the following storylines should continue to develop and new ones will emerge depending on how the tournament plays out.

1. The Thieves’ rivalries with Dallas and Atlanta

Throughout the past week, the L.A. Thieves ended up in social media scuffles with two different organizations. The first spat occured when Dallas Empire owner Mike “Hastr0” Rufailcalled out the Thieves after Dallas defeated them during CDL Super Week.

The next fight was between the L.A. and Atlanta players over the subject of “snaking.” Thieves players accused FaZe player McArthur “Cellium” Jovel of unfairly using the snaking tactic in matches.

While the disputes have settled down, things could start back up again at the Stage 1 Major. If the L.A. Thieves defeat the L.A. Guerrillas in round one of the winner’s bracket, they’ll move on to play Atlanta FaZe. If they manage to take down the Tiny Terrors, they could move on to face the Dallas Empire.

If any of these matches come to pass, all eyes will be on the respective party’s social media accounts.

2. Paris Legion could make a loser’s bracket run

Despite starting from the bottom of the standings, the Paris Legion are primed to make a loser’s bracket run. Consisting of players other organizations left behind, the Legion have improved dramatically since the start of Black Ops Cold War.

The team really showed signs of improvement when they took on Atlanta during CDL Super Week. Although the match ended in a loss, the team went to map five against arguably the best CDL roster.

At the Major, Paris starts in round two of the loser’s bracket. However, if Ulysses “AquA” Silva and Luis “Fire” Rivera keep playing well, winner’s bracket teams who fall into the loser’s bracket will need to watch out for the Legion.

Call of Duty League Stage 1 Major
The bracket for the Stage 1 Major. Image via CDL

3. New York’s chances after Super Week dominance

No teams were more impressive during CDL Super Week than the New York Subliners. Led by James “Clayster” Eubanks and Obaid “Asim” Asim, the team played unbelievably well, finishing with a 2-1 record. According to statistics, New York won the fastest match of Control in history at Super Week. They also failed to drop a map against either London or Minnesota, winning 6-0 combined. 

Although, they did fall to Dallas Empire 2-3 after a series of blunders in maps three, four and five. New York went up 2-0 to start the series but simply fell apart after that, unable to match Dallas’ skill. 

Coming into the Major, the Subliners start off playing OpTic Chicago. While their Super Week was impressive, it will be interesting to see if they can finally beat a top team. Depending on how they fare against OpTic, New York could be a dark horse candidate to win the Stage 1 Major.


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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