OpTic Texas have cemented themselves as the best team in the world after a 5-2 victory over Atlanta FaZe tonight to clinch the Call of Duty League’s first Major of the season and deliver a championship in their first event under the new OpTic Texas branding.
The crowd was buzzing as FaZe put the finishing touches on a 3-1 victory over the London Royal Ravens in the losers bracket finals, knowing they were going to be treated to a OpTic vs. FaZe grand finals on LAN for the first time since the CWL Pro League Stage One finals in 2018.
Two members of OpTic Gaming—Scump and Dashy—faced off against the eUnited team led by aBeZy and Arcitys in the 2018 CWL Las Vegas grand finals. Dashy was named MVP of the tournament after OpTic got the better of eUnited to take home the trophy. But eUnited would get the last laugh that season, going on to win the Call of Duty World Championship in 2019.
When Texas was introduced on the stage, there was a deafening roar from the crowd—and no one received a louder ovation than superstar and OpTic captain, Scump. FaZe were welcomed to the stage by a majority of fans with their backs turned to the stage and a chorus of boos for every single Atlanta player. Chants of “overrated” began to fill the arena as Atlanta stood on the main stage.
The best-of-nine started on a map familiar to both teams. With OpTic facing a 2-1 deficit to FaZe a day before, they played Gavutu Hardpoint to perfection to send their series to game five. A day later, they followed the same recipe to completely dominate Atlanta on Gavutu, with both iLLeY and Shotzzy putting up incredible numbers, 1.64 and 1.69 K/Ds, en route to the 250-130 victory to take a 1-0 advantage.
Texas looked to be well on their way to a 2-0 lead, jumping all over FaZe 3-0 early in Desert Siege Search and Destroy. But Atlanta showed their mettle, battling back and bringing it to a round 11 where they were able to get the defuse on the bomb site and tie the series one apiece. ABeZy, who dropped zero kills in their game five vs. OpTic earlier in the tournament, rebounded in a big way with a 13-7 performance to lead FaZe to victory.
As the series headed back to Gavutu, this time for Control, OpTic continued their hot starts with a 2-0 map lead, notching both offensive and defensive round victories. But FaZe responded with back-to-back rounds of their own to tie it up. Atlanta were dominant in the early part of round five and held an 11-life lead at 16-5 with only the B point left for the win. But a valiant OpTic squad thwarted FaZe’s last-ditch efforts to clinch the final round.
Unfortunately, there was an issue with Arcitys’ PC that caused him to lag throughout the final round. A decision was made by the CDL to replay that final round, but Scump would not have a Glide Bomb as he did in the original final round. In the replay, OpTic slayed at a blistering pace and allowed neither point to be secured to win the map. The second time, the result stuck.
Thanks to a massive performance from iLLeY on the Tuscan Hardpoint in map four, OpTic were able to overcome a late deficit and take a 3-1 lead due to their 250-212 victory. ILLeY was lighting up the kill feed on his way to a 35-23 statline. He’s the unsung hero of this OpTic squad, sacrificing personal stats to help his team win by any means necessary. When he’s slaying at an elite level, Texas look like a world championship level team.
FaZe would not go down without putting up a fight, though. After dropping two consecutive maps, they bounced back with an impressive 6-3 victory on Tuscan SnD to pull within a map in the series. The series continued on Tuscan, this time with Control. FaZe found themselves with a 2-1 round lead and a chance to win the map on offense. The team made the decision to not push the points in hope of preserving a life advantage to play defense in the final round. But the team made a miscalculation and defense was awarded to OpTic.
Texas stood firm on their defense of the elusive B point and found themselves a single map from their first major victory since CWL Las Vegas in 2018. Chants of “one more map” erupted as the Green Wall waited feverishly to celebrate a championship from OpTic Gaming. Still, OpTic needed to win an SnD after losing the first two of the series.
The series headed to Berlin for what would prove to be the series’ final map. After falling behind 3-4, Texas iced up. A massive two-piece from Scump helped turn a three-vs-four life deficit into a three-vs-one in their favor. Cellium was last alive for Atlanta but could not muster up anything to try and make a play on the bomb. After that, Optic could smell blood in the water. They were dominant in their final two rounds with the fans blowing the roof off the arena after OpTic clinched the championship.
For an organization as storied as OpTic Gaming, the winless streak was excruciating for the players, ownership, and its fans. In 2021, the team was so close to breaking through but never finished better than third at any championship event. They struggled with Atlanta and the Toronto Ultra throughout the season and it appeared to be tough on the players.
After the OpTic Gaming merger with Envy Gaming and the creation of OpTic Texas and its current roster of Scump, Dashy, Shotzzy, and iLLeY, many thought this would be the team to break through and win a championship for the Green Wall. The season did not start as well as they would have liked, with them dropping back-to-back round 11 game fives to start the year. But they slowly started to improve and hit their stride at the perfect time.
This version of OpTic looks to be championship contenders all season and is now the top dog in the Call of Duty League for the first time since its inaugural season in 2020.