As the Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare competitive season nears its conclusion, we head into the final event of the year, the MLG World Championships.
Over the past week, the groups for the $250,000 tournament have been drawn and released by MLG, and our content team will be attempting to predict the results of the group stages, continuing today with Group B.
Group B features two of the biggest competitive Call of Duty organisations within North America in FaZe and OpTic Nation. However neither of these two teams are guaranteed to automatically advance into the Winners Bracket.
Group B also consists of iSolation eSports, who recently won EGL Dallas in August, and Team Vitality, arguably the strongest European team. With only two teams able to automatically advance to bracket play, Group B is definitely one to watch. Let’s take a look at the teams.
| Clayster | Attach | ZooMaa | Enable |
The last six months have been incredible for FaZe Clan. Ever since they acquired Call of Duty World Championship winners James “Clayster” Eubanks and Dillion “Attach” Price from Denial eSports, FaZe have been an unstoppable force, establishing themselves as the current best team in the game.
With Ian “Enable” Wyatt and Tommy “Zoomaa” Paparratto already part of the FaZe roster, Clayster and Attach found the perfect home to continue their unbelievable year, and this has been epitomised with their wins at UMG Dallas, the Gfinity Summer Championship and the MLG Pro League Season 3 playoffs.
While Group B could prove to be a closer affair than most expect, it’s hard to look past a team in as good form as FaZe. I expect to see the Red Militia sitting pretty at the top of the group come the end pool play.
Most Valuable Player Prediction: Enable
| MBoZe | Ricky | MirX | NAMELESS |
OpTic Nation head into the MLG World Championships with another new and unsettled roster. While Marcus "MBoZe" Blanks, Marcus "MiRx" Carter and Richard "Ricky" Stacy maintain their place on the team, OpTic Nation have replaced Steve “Mochilla” Canle with former Team Kaliber member Anthony “NAMELESS” Wheeler.
As expected, a new line-up will never aid a team’s preparation heading into an event, however, OpTic Nation are a team built around the core principle of team chemistry, an aspect that can often go overlooked within the community.
MBoZe, Ricky, MirX and NAMELESS are all close friends in and outside of Call of Duty, therefore there is no pressure for them to build team chemistry, as it already exists. As a result, each player is able to focus upon their role within the team and ensure they are playing at their best of their ability.
On paper, Nation are an extremely talented roster, Ricky is one of the most consistent players in the game, MirX has the potential to slay alongside the best, MBoZe is a solid captain and clever Search and Destroy player and NAMELESS is an experienced veteran. Together, OpTic Nation possesses enough quality to propel them into the Winners Bracket.
However, in order for this to happen, Nation need to be firing on all four cylinders, a problem they have struggled with in the past. Since an impressive run at the Gfinity Summer Championship, OpTic Nation have been unable to perform well as a team, resulting in a number of inconsistent placements.
OpTic Nation are a difficult team to predict, as their progress in Group B largely depends on which team shows up. Whether it’s the focused, aggressive Nation or the disjointed, frustrated one, I believe OpTic Nation will scrape through pool play, but it certainly won’t be easy.
Most Valuable Player Prediction: MirX
| Dedo | LlamaGod | Havok | SiLLY |
While iSolation eSports may be the smallest of the four teams in terms of fan base, this iSo squad has been extremely impressive since its formation and their talent can be seen through their wins at the MLG Pro League Relegation Tournament and EGL Dallas.
Although iSolation eSports have been drawn into a tough group, the organisation already boasts wins over both FaZe, UMG DC, and OpTic Nation, MLG Pro League Playoffs, so they can be confident in their ability to cause another upset.
With the explosive talent of Colt "Havok" McLendon and Justin “SiLLY” Fargo-Palmer, iSo fans can expect an entertaining event, with team captain Kenneth "Dedo" Dedo keen to lead this squad to victory.
On their day iSolation eSports can defeat any of their opponents in Group B, however, I personally believe beating the likes of FaZe and OpTic Nation will be too much for this squad. I expect iSo to pick up a win, but narrowly miss out on Winners Bracket qualification.
Most Valuable Player Prediction: SiLLY
| Tommey | Joee | MadCat | Swanny |
Team Vitality are arguably Europe’s brightest hope for success at the MLG World Championships.
The new all-star roster, comprised of team captain Tom “Tommey” Trewen, former Epsilon teammates, Callum “Swanny” Swan and Dylan “MadCat” Daly and young gun Joe “Joee” Pinnington are already widely regarded as the European dream team and have already experienced success under the Vitality banner, having won DreamHack London.
Team Vitality are a strong squad, who possess the potential to give all three teams in Group B a good run for their money. However, Europeans teams have a tendency to struggle within the US, and combined with the abundance of talent in this pool, it’s hard to see Vitality picking up a win.
However, as both Swanny and MadCat found themselves plying their trade in the US this year, Team Vitality may be able to utilise their knowledge and experience to narrow the gap between the two nations play style.
As a result, Vitality will be looking to pick up wins against iSolation eSports and OpTic Nation, however, I’m still inclined to say that this weekend will be a difficult one for Team Vitality.
Most Valuable Player Prediction: MadCat
Predictions (Excluding Team From Open Bracket)
1st) FaZe Clan 3-0
2nd) OpTic Nation 2-1
3rd) iSolation 1-2
4th) Team Vitality 0-3
I can only see one winner from Group B, and it’s FaZe Clan. They seem like an unstoppable force right now, and while iSo have defeated them recently, I don’t see them pulling off that impressive feat once again. I expect to see FaZe beat all three teams pretty comfortably, and secure their place in the next round.
In second, I’ve gone with OpTic Nation. While Nation are inconsistent and unpredictable, I feel that at Worlds, with so much on the line, Nation will pull it together and make it out of the group. iSo will run Nation close, but just fall short, while picking up a victory against Team Vitality.
Unfortunately, that leaves Team Vitality at the bottom of Group B. While they’re a strong team with amazingly talented players, I don’t believe they have enough to match up against their American counterparts. They’ll run Nation and iSo close, but just fall short.
Do you agree with my predictions? Let us know the comments below!
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