This evening, OpTic Gaming announced the rather shocking news that Marcus "MBoZe" Blanks has parted ways with the OpTic Nation roster, after reviving the iconic team earlier in the year.
In a statement released by OpTic founding member, Hector “H3CZ” Rodriguez, it was declared that
“MBoZe will be stepping down as captain of OpTic Nation. Chemistry within the team demanded that a change was needed, and the team and organization mutually agreed that this was the best decision for the team. MBoZe will remain at the OpTic house and will continue to entertain his fan base via his livestreams and YouTube videos. In the meantime, MBoZe will be searching for a new team to compete with for the remainder of the season. For the time-being, OpTic Nation will be utilizing Synfula, who OpTic Nation picked up as a substitute for Season 1.”
Although the revelation of this statement unexpectedly stunned the community, the reasoning behind this decision seems to be justifiable. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is unlike any game we have previously familiarised ourselves with, thus predicting the potential strengths and weaknesses of a newly incepted line-up is no menial task.
With the conclusion of MLG Columbus and the launch of the Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare season, organisations, players and fans alike are finally gaining a true understanding of a team’s abilities both online and at LAN events. Unfortunately, OpTic Nation’s disappointing 7-8th placement and 2-6 league record proved to be unsatisfactory, as both team and organisation mutually agreed that change was required in order to succeed.
Although MBoZe has departed from the OpTic Nation roster, at this moment in time he is still a proud member of the GreenWall. Despite the uncertainty surrounding his future, MBoZe took to twitter to state that regardless of the situation, he still loves and appreciates everything H3CZ and OpTic have done for him, while also specifying that he will now spend his time focused towards “growing [his YouTube] channel and streaming”, however if he receives an offer he feels “comfortable” with, he’ll take it.
With OpTic Nation now searching for a new permanent fourth member, as expected, Twitter exploded into a frenzy of debates, as the community discussed the potential possibilities available to ON, as well as the MLG CoD Leagues’ current rulings. Thankfully, Executive Vice President of MLG, Adam Apicella, cleared the air for us as he explained the current situation.
Teams have until the 21st of January to select two appropriate substitute players, whether they identify them themselves, or trade one of their six members for an opposing squad’s player. Within these six members, teams are able to select a player as a starter or substitute at “any time during the season at the discretion of the team owner”. However, teams are not required to pick up substitutes, “but once picked up and added to the roster the transaction is final unless traded by the deadline.”
Therefore, given the previous information, it is currently possible for OpTic Nation to ‘trade’ MBoZe to another team, in order to receive one of their starters or substitutes. However, one must remember that the second party involved has to agree upon the deal, as well as MBoZe himself. Consequently , it is also worth noting that presently, we are only aware of a single OpTic Nation substitute player, Jonathan “Synfula” Baez, which may implicate the organisations desire to avoid trading their players.
One name which the community has consistently mentioned is that of Callum "Swanny" Swan. The United Kingdom based veteran Call of Duty professional has already publicly stated his interest to pursue a career within America, controversially leaving European powerhouse organisation Epsilon eSports in order to achieve his dream. Although it is currently unclear whether OpTic Nation would be allowed to simply pick Swanny as a substitute or rather compel another organisation to pick him up and subsequently trade with them, we could potentially witness the first instance of an international roster within the competitive Call of Duty community.
Nevertheless, regardless of whom OpTic Nation decides to embrace into the GreenWall, one thing we can be sure of is that everything will be handled with the upmost professionalism. Only time will tell who will be the next member to join the illustrious line-up of Jordan "ProoFy" Cannon, Tyler "TeePee" Polchow and Damon "Karma" Barlow.
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