CoD Champs: Pool Play Problems
Controversy struck after the groups for CoD Champs were announced.
What’s the point of working hard all year if there’s no reward in the end?As the pools were released this week for Call of Duty Championships, which begins this Friday, there was a lot of unrest around the community about the way that the teams were arranged into groups.Originally, the consensus was that the top two seeded teams, OpTic Gaming in Group A and Denial eSports in Group B, were going to be accompanied in their group by teams that were not from North America. It's no secret that North America is the dominant region in the Call of Duty eSports world, so it would obviously be the preference by these two teams to bypass playing another North American team in their group if they had the chance.During the North American regional finals, it was said on stream that the top two seeded teams heading into CoD Champs would not encounter another NA team in their pool. The CEO of Denial also claims that he was told the same thing while in Columbus.https://twitter.com/DenialCEO/status/580105914566483968James “Clayster” Eubanks, also from Denial, confirms what everyone else was saying on Twitter when the pools were announced.
https://twitter.com/Clayster/status/580084129049477120However, this ended up not being the case, as OpTic Gaming was accompanied by Team Orbit in Group A, and Denial eSports was joined by Prophecy in Group B. This was met with immediate controversy in the CoD community, as it seems unfair toward the best seeded teams as they deserve some sort of reward for earning the top two spots.
Comparison to other sporting tournamentsA similar situation that is occurring right now is with the NCAA tournament in college basketball. An extremely popular event across the country, the top 68 teams are arranged into a bracket-style tournament to determine who is the best college basketball team in the land.The teams aren’t thrown into the bracket randomly. The seeding it determined based on their performance throughout the entire season. There is always some banter regarding which team is ranked where, but the best teams in the country always have a few easier matchups at the start of the tournament because they performed extremely well consistently throughout the season and earned it.And that is the key: that the best teams have earned the right to play the easier matchups at the start of the tournament. OpTic Gaming has won the last three LAN tournaments and only lost a single map at the Regional Qualifiers, yet they still have been placed in a group with a challenging team from North America, Team Orbit, consisting of TwiZz, Sinful, Lawless, and Accuracy.
Prophecy poses the same threat toward Denial eSports in their group. Prophecy’s squad, MBoZe, Ricky, Mochila, and Classic, are all players with immense talent that have been around the CoD competitive scene for years. In fact, MBoZe fell just short of capturing the Call of Duty Championship title in 2014 after finishing in third place with OpTic Gaming. Prophecy is another team not to take lightly, and is a legitimate threat to make a run in this tournament.