The most dominant CDL Challengers team in 2022 wasn’t the team to win Champs. Toronto Ultra Academy NA took over most of this event, which is happening in conjunction with CDL Champs at the Galen Center. Up until the grand finals, Ultra Academy NA didn’t drop a single map throughout the entire tournament. Thomas “Scrappy” Ernst continued to show why he belongs in the CDL, performing the best for Toronto the entire event. They blew through their first two matches before meeting Iron Blood Gaming in the grand finals. Iron Blood Gaming features a few former professional players, including Nick “Classic” DiCostanzo. They also have Mohak “MohaK” Kumar on the roster, who was dropped by Toronto in exchange for Adam “Assault” Garcia earlier this summer.
Many expected Toronto Academy NA to roll through the grand finals as they had in every one of their previous matches. However, Iron Blood had different plans. Not only did they hand Toronto their first map loss of Champs; they also won two best-of-five series to reset the bracket and capture the title of Challengers world champions.
We have a Challenger CHAMPION! @IronBloodGaming come out victorious after the bracket reset! 3-1! #CDLChamps pic.twitter.com/W6gVkg7I39
— Susano ⛈ @ CDL Champs (@OgSusano) August 7, 2022
Kaden “Exceed” Stockdale was the undeniable MVP for Iron Blood in the grand finals. He had a ridiculous performance on Berlin Control, which Iron Blood couldn’t win, and then followed that up with great performances on Berlin Hardpoint and Search and Destroy in the first best-of-five. He dropped 11 kills in the map five S&D on Berlin to force the bracket reset.
This is getting silly, @ExceedLbX. https://t.co/IrDwSytCEM pic.twitter.com/TXEk7tuo5g
— The Rotation (@_TheRotation) August 6, 2022
In the second best-of-five, Exceed continued his hot streak; he dropped 34 kills on map one, Hardpoint on Gavutu, to draw first blood in the series. Classic also had 32 kills while Scrap led Toronto Academy NA in kills as always.
The series moved to Bocage Search and Destroy for map two, and Iron Blood continued to gather momentum. Carson “Brack” Newberry was the MVP for Iron Blood this time, dropping 10 kills to lead his team to a 6-2 win. With the series moving to Berlin Control, it was match point for Iron Blood. They went from the loser’s bracket to winning one best-of-five to being up 2-0 against the best Challengers team.
Of course, Toronto Academy NA wouldn’t go down without a fight. They dominated the map three Control on Berlin, with Scrappy absolutely carrying the roster. He finished with 36 kills for Toronto to send the series to a map four on Berlin. This is where things ended for Toronto. Despite leading for most of the map, Iron Blood fought back yet again and won the map with a terrific P1 hold.
It’s truly a miraculous win for Iron Blood, who just formed one month ago. They were sent to the loser’s bracket by Toronto Academy NA, fought their way through to the grand finals and won six matches to defeat the best Challengers team. MohaK got his revenge, Scrappy and the rest of Toronto were humbled, and the 2022 Challengers scene ends on a terrific note.
About the Author
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.