ESPORTS HUDDLE: ‘CALL OF DUTY’ LEAGUE OPENS TO RECORD VIEWERSHIP
The Call of Duty League has reported record viewership figures for last weekend’s 2021 season opening contests.
The competition saw nearly 1.4 million total hours watched, boosted by the regular season record of 131,000 peak viewers for the primetime matchup between the Atlanta FaZe and Chicago OpTic. Total figures registered a 70 percent increase when compared to 2020’s opening weekend last season.
Average minute audience (AMA), a gauge of viewership at any given minute during a broadcast, reached 80,000 viewers, the highest in CDL history.
Opening Weekend was the most-watched event in league history outside of Championship Weekend in September, surpassing last year’s Playoffs which sported a 67,000 viewer AMA.
The next weekend of Call of Duty League competition begins on Thursday.
Meanwhile, the VALORANT Champions Tour Closed Qualifier 2 slated for this weekend has been delayed due to extreme weather conditions. The official Champions Tour Twitter confirmed the first matchups will now take place on Feb. 20 at 12 p.m. PT, with the weekend’s Grand Finals now scheduled for Feb. 23. There has been no word on whether this delay will affect the Open Qualifier 3 event currently scheduled for Feb. 25.
Elsewhere in the world of competitive gaming:
Russian DOTA 2 Team Withdraws From Pro Circuit
Meta4Pro, a Russian esports organization, has voluntarily removed itself from the DOTA 2 Pro Circuit while it investigates its own players for match-fixing. The official announcement from Dreamhack confirmed the withdrawal, as well as the voiding of all Meta4Pro results so far this season. “Due to an internal investigation regarding a player match fixing in Meta4Pro, the team has decided to withdraw from the #DreamLeague Season 14 DPC EU Lower Division,” Dreamhack tweeted. Dreamhack has reported that DOTA 2 developer Valve is aware of the situation, but no official actions have been taken as of yet.
Capcom Cup 2020 Matchups Revealed
Capcom Esports has announced the Street Fighter V matchups for the 2020 Capcom Cup, foregoing the traditional bracket-style competition for a boxing-style match card. Top matchups include longtime pro Daigo Umehara taking on Kanamori “Gachikun”Tsunehiro, 2017 Capcom Cup champion Saul Leonardo Mena “MenaRD” Segundo facing fellow Puerto Rican player Cristhoper “Caba” Rodriguez and defending Capcom Cup champion Derek “iDom” Ruffin squaring off against Bryant “Smug” Higgins. The Capcom Cup 2020 begins Feb. 20 at 4 p.m. PT.
Top Australian Esports Org Purchases AVANT Gaming
Dire Wolves, one of the top esports organizations in Australia, has purchased competitor AVANT Gaming. The team announced the acquisition on Twitter, saying, “With their massive legacy in esports, we are so excited to have acquired [AVANT] as the newest addition to the family.” Dire Wolves will enter Counter-Strike: Global Offensive competition for the first time due to this merger, while AVANT’s position in League of Legends Circuit Oceania will be sold to another organization. Financial details involving the sale were not disclosed.
Photo courtesy of Activision