This article is part of our DraftKings Call of Duty series.
- 3:00 p.m. Toronto Ultra vs. London Royal Ravens
- 4:30 p.m. New York Subliners vs. Minnesota Rokkr
TOR vs. LON
Unlike Wednesday, when I foolishly suggested not stacking the battle for Los Angeles matchup, Thursday's slate feels like a no-brainer. From a competition stand point, the Ultra and Royal Ravens are fairly even, especially with Toronto's recent run of form resulting in back-to-back top-4 finishes, including a first-place finish in their own home stand. The totality of the team's respective seasons sure feels like this is, at minimum, a four-game series, but I wouldn't be surprised if it goes to a fifth game should Ultra prove to be formidable in Search and Destroy.
There's far too much value to ignore from this matchup, on top of the fact this should be the longer of the two series. Cammy has been absolutely incredible, and would be a steal at $9,000 if the contest goes at least four games. The same goes for Skrapz, who incredulously sits at $8,600 despite eight straight contests with at least 90 or more points. Methodz and wuskin make for intriguing middle-tier options as well, and you could theoretically slot either into the captain spot and open up savings for Minnesota's Assault if you really wanted to pile together a top-tier lineup. I have at least four players from this series in my lineup, and in a tournament setting, fading MackMelts could prove to be an interesting choice as well, particularly if the Subliners take care of business in a quick three-game set. It's not out of the realm of possibility for Zer0, or even Classic for that matter, to get close to MackMelts' production if the first game winds up being much longer than the second. I'm not quite willing to bet on that – after all, this is the Call of Duty World Championships, so I have to imagine everyone is coming with their A-game – but stacking TOR/LON is a pretty obvious choice.
Prediction: LON 3-2
NYS vs. MIN
Perhaps why I'm so keen on stacking the first game is because DraftKings has left us without any sort of lower and middle-tier value, with GodRx's replacement, Exceed, not listed in their scoring roster. That's right, GodRx has been benched ahead of the pivotal tournament, with the Minnesota coaches citing a lack of pacing as the ultimate reason for the switch.
Whether I agree with the decision or not is a moot point, as I see the Subliners simply being the better team whoever is starting for the Rokkr. Removing GodRx takes a potent S&D threat off the map which makes me feel extra comfortable rostering the NYS team as the obvious choice at $2,400. If this game goes to four maps, you could possibly see the likes of Temp or Accuracy, especially the latter due to his his Hardpoint presence, return value. But even if Exceed does up the Minnesota tempo, I still think this contest will be dictated by the in-your-face aggression of Attach and ZooMaa, for which I think the Rokkr have no answers for.
MackMelts is, and will always be, a tremendous fantasy option, but for much of the same reasons it didn't make sense to captain Octane on Wednesday, I fear a three-game series wipe could threaten the top-tier value, especially next to a matchup that almost looks assured to at least go four games. The upside is tournament-winning should you captain MackMelts and the Subliners go to four games, but I'm just not comfortable going that route when there's more predictable paths to victory.
Prediction: NYS 3-0
* GODRX IS BENCHED AHEAD OF THURSDAY'S MATCHUP AND WILL NOT PLAY *