Seth "Scump" Abner, one of the biggest names in the professional Call of Duty competitive scene addressed the claims of Dallas Empire being the strongest team ahead of 2020 CDL season, by stating their dominance in "scrims" does not matter.
The 2020 CDL season is rapidly approaching, with less than a month separating us from the opening event, which is set to take place on January 24, 2020, at Minneapolis Armory. The 12 teams are taking this time to get familiar with the new Call of Duty title and practice for the challenges that they will face ahead, mostly by playing skirmish matches (also known as scrims) between each other.
While all teams are hard at work, it is Dallas Empire roster, which has been under the spotlight due to their dominance in skirmish matches, which made the CoD community believe Empire will enter the inaugural CDL season as the strongest team out of 12.
That being said, the former OpTiC Gaming captain and the second-winningest player in Call of Duty history - Scump, does not believe those claims are even remotely true and that the community overrates the results Dallas Empire achieved in scrims.
In a Chicago Huntsman video, titled "Message to CDL teams" Scump and the team's CEO Hector "H3CZ" Rodriguez talked about the community belief which claims Dallas Empire are by far the strongest team ahead of 2020 CDL due to their dominance in skirmish matches and it was the former OpTic captain, who had the most to say about that.
"Nobody cares right now, everyone's in the actual scene," Scump said.
"You can't blame the people watching because that's all they've had to base off of, you can't blame them. People place stock in all that scrim stuff."
Scump added that while Empire are a very strong team, and without a doubt, the best online team as of now, their dominance in online practice matches does not necessarily mean they will be one of the best teams in CDL, simply because online and LAN events are two completely different things. He explained that you can often hear CoD pro players say "Wait until LAN [tournament]" and there is a good reason for that.
As the main argument Scump stated that all five players from Dallas Empire are based in Texas, which is widely known a state which has one of the best internet connections, which gives the Empire players an advantage over other teams. That, however, won't be the case in a LAN event.
While Scump's claims that LAN event is much different as compared to online matches might seem like an excuse, there are a few key factors that needed to be considered.
All pros who play the game every single day do so on different hosts and different connections, which does give players with better internet a slight advantage. LAN events on the other side are all played on the same host, meaning it provides a fair playing field for everyone. Furthermore, Scump explained that playing at a major LAN event makes some players nervous, which is only one of the factors that differentiate an online match from a LAN tournament.
H3CZ also had a few words to say about the topic, claiming that teams and community are putting too much emphasis on the online matches and they shouldn't. By doing so they are running the risk of going through what OpTic Gaming went through last year when they entered CWL strong and confident but fell apart through the season.
Talking from his own experience he suggested some teams should get off their high horse and avoid being too confident which will lead to their demise.
In his own style, Hector also called out his rival and Dallas Empire CEO Mike "Hastr0" Rufail for complaining about the controversial CDL power rankings list which surfaced last month, where an esports news reporter put Chicago Huntsman ahead of Dallas Empire. In the video Hector said: "Hastro, you know that we're number one, all the time... you have known that since you have started doing this," adding some more oil to the fire and possibly a huge rivalry between the two teams.
The duo ended their rant by advising teams to keep their practice going, but not to get overconfident with their results, which could affect how they will perform at the main event, under the light, in front of screaming fans. They both, however, acknowledged more times than not teams who dominate online manage to translate their form into a LAN event, but it’s not always like that and we will never know for sure until the 2020 CDL kicks off next month, on January 24, 2020 at Minneapolis Armory.