CDL 2021: Stage Two Top Picks and Predictions – Week One
It seems like five minutes ago that we were wrapping up the first Major Tournament of the Call of Duty League 2021 season, but here we are again. The CDL is about to jump right into the Second Stage, and competitors will once again fight for the chance to receive key CDL points and an advantageous seeding in the next Major Tournament.
We’ve seen some major shakeups across the CDL over the last week, with Toronto Ultra benching Methodz, arguably its best player, and two integral team members leaving the London Royal Ravens. In the last few days, Alexx and Parasite have left the Royal Ravens for differing reasons, with the latter having originally been contracted on a two-week temporary deal.
As the CDL 2021 Second Stage kicks off, it brings with it a host of new amendments to the platform. The XM4, the League’s most popular AR, has now been GA’d, along with various attachments on the AK74u, the SMG of choice for the CDL competitors. Furthermore, there are rumours circulating that the map rotation will change, with Crossroads (Hardpoint-only) being dropped in favour of Apocalypse, a relatively new map in Cold War.
Without further ado, let’s break down the first week of the Second Stage:
New York Subliners vs. Atlanta FaZe
Thursday, March 18th – 15:00 EST
Atlanta FaZe is still yet to lose a single match this season, and as a team, they absolutely dominated the first Major Tournament of the year. However, the New York Subliners has been remarkably strong in recent weeks, proving that they’re a dedicated force to be reckoned with. Bizarrely, these two teams haven’t met yet, and this will be the first time they face-off this season.
Pick: Atlanta FaZe
Seattle Surge vs. Florida Mutineers
Thursday, March 18th – 16:30 EST
Following an extremely unsuccessful Major Tournament, Seattle Surge will be looking to recover lost ground, playing the first match of the Second Stage against the very team that kicked them out of the Major. The Mutineers secured a 3 – 1 win over Seattle, ensuring they claimed absolutely nothing in terms of prize money. At the moment, Surge is second from the bottom in the table, and Gunless and Co. will be desperate to recover lost points.
Pick: Seattle Surge
Betting Site: Unikrn
Toronto Ultra vs. LA Thieves
Friday, March 19th – 15:00 EST
The LA Thieves didn’t have as good a Major as everyone thought they would, losing 3 – 0 to the Los Angeles Guerrillas, and then falling to OpTic Chicago who wiped them 3 – 1. However, the Thieves did dominate Toronto Ultra, beating them 3 – 0 and booting them unceremoniously from the Tournament. Now that Toronto Ultra has changed the roster and benched Methodz, it’ll be interesting to see how the team dynamic unfolds.
Pick: LA Thieves
Minnesota Rokkr vs. Paris Legion
Friday, March 19th – 16:30 EST
Both Paris Legion and Minnesota Rokkr had a rough time through the Major, with both teams being kicked out at the first post. Although neither of these teams has faced-off yet in the CDL 2021 season, Rokkr has been the better team in recent weeks. While Paris Legion showed a little more defiance leading up to the Major Tournament, the Legion’s competitors are yet to pull of anything remarkable.
Pick: Minnesota Rokkr
Paris Legion vs. OpTic Chicago
Saturday, March 20th – 15:oo EST
For a moment, everyone believed OpTic would be winning the Major Tournament – or at least breaking into the final. The veteran side beat NYSL 3 – 0, lost to Dallas, then retaliated by wiping the LA Thieves out of the Major in a 3 – 1 defeat. Unfortunately, the Subliners came back strong to sweep OpTic out, but it was a hard-fought battle. When they last met, OpTic beat Paris Legion 3 – 0 in an effortless fight, but can they repeat that result this time?
Pick: Optic Chicago
Minnesota Rokkr vs. Florida Mutineers
Saturday, March 20th – 16:30 EST
This will be a relatively balanced match, with both of these teams sitting directly alongside one another in the CDL 2021 standings. Although Minnesota Rokkr is the tougher team on paper, Florida cannot be discounted. In their recent match-ups, Skyz and Owakening have been pulling some clean feeds, but will it be enough to overcome the four-man might of Minnesota? After all, Priestahh has been accused of quite literally outplaying his team recently.
Pick: Minnesota Rokkr
Seattle Surge vs. Dallas Empire
Saturday, March 20th – 18:00 EST
This is the first match in the Second Stage for the reigning champions, and they’ll be desperate to regain lost ground following their defeat in the final of the first Major Tournament. The Empire played remarkably well but ultimately fell to FaZe, and now it’s up to the team to secure that prestigious seeding for the next Major. Ultimately, this is a bottom-table team versus a premier, top-table side, but can the underdog beat the pedigree?
Pick: Dallas Empire
London Royal Ravens vs. Los Angeles Guerrillas
Sunday, March 21st – 15:00 EST
The London Royal Ravens have the biggest need to win out of any team in the Call of Duty League right now, as they’re currently sitting on a flat zero. They’ve won nothing so far this season, and they were pushed out of the Major Tournament following a 3 – 2 loss to Toronto Ultra. They’ve also switched out two players on the team, meaning the dynamic may also be impacted for the Second Stage. Can the new members help to overcome the Guerrillas, a team that 3 – 0’d the LA Thieves in the Major?
Pick: LA Guerrillas
Toronto Ultra vs. Atlanta FaZe
Sunday, March 21st – 16:30 EST
Both of these teams are entering their second match of the Stage, so they could either be riding high on a win or low on a loss. To be honest, we’re anticipating that Toronto will have another rocky Stage, which won’t be helped by the fact that their first two opposing sides are some of the strongest competitors in the CDL right now. Can FaZe finish the first week of the Second Stage while still maintaining that perfect record?
Pick: Atlanta FaZe
New York Subliners vs. LA Thieves
Sunday, March 21st – 18:00 EST
When they last met, the LA Thieves devastated the New York Subliners with a 3 – 0 loss, but it was before Subliners seemed to find their feet and become a true contender for the League. Throughout the Major, the Subliners performed a little better than the LA Thieves, with veteran Clayster leading his force of relative rookies to victory under some tough circumstances. Can they keep up the pressure and dominate the LA Thieves, who currently sit below them in the overall standings?
Pick: NY Subliners