James “Clayster” Eubanks has done pretty much everything there is to do in competitive Call of Duty. So when his younger teammates, Anthony “Shotzzy” Cuevas-Castro and Indervir “iLLeY” Dhaliwal, began to take a lot of criticism online after a second-place finish at the Call of Duty League London weekend event, the veteran stood up for them.
Shotzzy and iLLeY, two of the league’s most anticipated prospects, combined for one CWL event before the season began in Minnesota two weeks ago. Shotzzy’s top 48 finish at the CWL Amateur Finals last July was the only offline, non-local event either had competed in.
Clayster, who won the final two events of last season, including the $2 million CWL Championship, sent out a series of tweets earlier today in which he defended his team, which is now 3-4 after two wins against the Seattle Surge, a victory over the hometown London Royal Ravens, and two losses to the undefeated Chicago Huntsmen during this weekend.
“3-4 with three losses to Chi and 1 to Faze, all while two of our players are playing their first pro cod lans and learning respawn,” Clayster tweeted. “Progress takes time, y’all.”
He also addressed the theory that Shotzzy and iLLeY, who were among the best players in online Search and Destroy tournaments before going pro, will be unable to translate their success to offline events.
“This whole “online” take is hilarious,” he said. “If anyone has watched (which you haven’t) we haven’t been ‘amazing’ in scrims since before the slide cancel patch. Everyone’s referencing scrims that happened two months ago as ‘dominating online’ when we’ve been far from it since the patch.
“Imagine your first CoD tournament you have a crowd chanting go back to Halo and you’ve got to play Chicago twice, aha I’d have shit meself [sic]. Proud of how Ant and Inder handled the pressure, and with it being so close so soon, I’m excited to see the players they can become.”
Before switching to Call of Duty full-time, Shotzzy was a successful Halo player. As a part of Splyce, he won the 2018 Halo World Championship, defeating TOX Gaming, the roster that won the previous two world titles.
ILLeY has been one of the most exciting young players in the world for several years. After initially being accused of cheating by some players, his Search and Destroy prowess has allegedly netted him thousands of dollars through online tournaments and wager matches.
He was also part of the eUnited Cadets roster, an under-18 team designed to assist eUnited’s main team that also included current Atlanta FaZe players McArthur “Cellium” Jovel and Chris “Simp” Lehr, the latter of which was Clayster’s teammate during eUnited’s world title-winning run last year.
Dallas will not participate in the next event, which is in Atlanta. Instead, they will compete against seven other teams in the Los Angeles weekend on March 7 and 8. Their first match will be against the New York Subliners, who is 1-4 through five matches.