Despite the Overwatch League taking a week off between Stages 2 and 3 of its inaugural season it has been a very busy week in esports. The Madden Ultimate League continued its regular season play while the UK was home to some incredible Call of Duty action in Birmingham. This was capped off with the NBA and 2K joining forces to hold a professional draft to kick off the first ever season of the NBA2K League. With so much to discuss let’s get right into it.
The Call of Duty World League held its fourth major offline stop of the season in Birmingham, UK this past weekend, the only European major of the season. As such the European Splyce roster enjoyed immense support from the crowd and was able to use that support to reach the finals for the second time this season, the first being the season opener and inaugural WWII event in Dallas. After failing to make the top 8 at the last two major open events and a poor performance in the first stage of pro league, the success is a welcome change for the Europeans who have been struggling immensely as of late. They demonstrated this weekend that they were more than capable of hanging with the very best, which should give them confidence heading into Seattle in two weeks time.
Emerging as champions on the weekend were Luminosity who have been playing impressively since their lackluster top 8 finish in Dallas at the opener. After making the finals in New Orleans and finishing 3rd in Atlanta, this talented group was finally able to claim their first major offline victory of the season. Narrowly defeating both OpTic and Rise Gaming 3-2 on their winner’s bracket run, Luminosity entered the finals dropping only their matchup against Splyce in pool play.
The finals appeared to be going in a similar direction when Splyce were able to defeat Luminosity 3-1 in the opening match of the finals, forcing a second best of five. This is where the tables would turn however, as Luminosity emerged from the final series victorious with a 3-1 score line.
Team Kaliber have continued to slide since their back to back victories in Dallas and New Orleans to open the season. After finishing 7th/8th in Atlanta their slide continued further this past weekend finishing 9th-12th. The team has looked like a shadow of its former self in recent events and certainly looks like it needs to change something if it hopes to find success at the highest level once again.
Pro League Playoffs begin today through Sunday and the next major offline event will be held in Seattle, April 20-22nd.
The NBA 2k League held its first ever player draft and it was executed with such professionalism that it closely resembled the actual NBA draft. Players were flown to New York early, in order to get suited up and fresh haircuts before their big day at Madison Square Garden, all covered by 2K and the NBA. NBA commissioner Adam Silver read the first overall selection himself, giving the draft an even more incredible atmosphere that must have been a dream come true for all 102 players involved.
Before the draft began world-renowned NBA journalist Adrian Wojnarowski dropped one of his famous “Woj Bombs” accurately reporting that point guard Artreyo “Dimez” Boyd would be the first overall pick of the draft going to Mavericks Gaming. The raptors had the 11th overall pick in the draft, selecting point guard Kenneth “Kenny” Hailey. You can check out the draft board to see the exact order of all the players drafted and their corresponding teams. The draft was broadcast live on Twitch and NBATV.
It was a rough week for Blocky, who entered the week atop the Elite conference standings. He was handed his first two losses of the season by Skimbo and Young Kiv, dropping his record down to 4-2. Skimbo’s perfect week catapulted him to the top of the Elite conference standings with a 5-3 record on the season. With 4 players currently having four or more wins in the Elite conference and every player having at least two victories this season is still far from over.
The Legend side of things has gone unchanged this week as they didn’t play any matches, they return to action this week.