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OpTic Texas finally looks back to normal, to the joy of Green Wall fans everywhere; the team just picked up their first win of the CDL Major IV qualifiers today against the Paris Legion. While not the toughest opponent, Texas returned to the form we saw them play at for the first half of the 2022 season. It’s no surprise that OpTic looks like their old selves in their first match back with Indervir “iLLeY” Dhaliwal; he returned to the starting roster today after spending two months away to recover from a thumb/hand injury. OpTic played admirably without iLLeY, but went 0-2 to kick off Major IV last weekend. They’ve made up for half of those losses today with this win over Paris.
The Legion have now completed a feat that no professional esports organization wants to accomplish. Paris has now gone 100 days without winning a single series, including the qualifiers and major events. While the team only has two series wins in 2022, going 100 consecutive days without winning is sure to wear down any roster. Unfortunately for Paris, they play the LA Thieves, Florida Mutineers, and Minnesota ROKKR to round out the Major IV qualifiers. All three of those teams are fighting for a top-eight spot in the standings to make Champs, so they will be bringing their absolute best. The Legion have all but been eliminated from competing at Champs, as they only have 20 points for the season.
As for OpTic, they get a much-needed win to try and avoid the loser’s bracket at Major IV in two weeks. Brandon “Dashy” Otell and Anthony “Shotzzy” Cuevas-Castro were the main slayers for Texas in the win over Paris. Shotzzy finished with the highest KD in the first two maps, while Dashy kept his MVP season going with another terrific performance, finishing with a 1.25 KD. iLLeY also returned with a bang, specifically in the Berlin Hardpoint where he finished 29-16 and closed out the map nicely.
— OpTic Gaming™ (@OpTic) July 2, 2022
If OpTic could take one thing away from this series, it should be that be they need to improve in Control. After a dominant start in the mode during the beginning of the year, Texas has fallen off a bit in Control as of late. While some of that can be attributed to playing without iLLeY, Texas looked rough in their Control loss to the Legion today. Tuscan in particular has not been OpTic’s best map recently, so maybe they will try and play on Gavutu or Berlin in the future. Either way, Texas stands a much better chance of winning Major IV — and possibly Champs — if they can get their Control mojo back.
Of course, the team could also try relying solely on Hardpoint and Search and Destroy to win matches. OpTic looked terrific on both Hardpoints and Tuscan S&D against the Legion; specifically outslaying Paris by 30 kills on Bocage. Once again, though, their competition wasn’t the greatest. But perhaps iLLeY’s return can spark Texas to start steamrolling teams without needing to rely on Control.
OpTic Texas will look to continue to improve tomorrow against the red-hot New York Subliners. Paris will try and snap their 100-day losing streak against the LA Thieves tomorrow as well.
Joey Carr is a full-time writer for multiple esports and gaming websites. He has 6+ years of experience covering esports and traditional sporting events, including DreamHack Atlanta, Call of Duty Championships 2017, and Super Bowl 53.