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Optic Gaming Los Angeles made a resurgence this weekend at the Florida Mutineers’ home series and finished second. After starting the season with four losses and finishing bottom tier at multiple events, the team needed a change. Optic fans were begging for some sort of roster change after Jordan “JKap” Kaplan had gone negative at every event. Various names had been thrown around the community of who would be able to help Optic succeed. However, it wasn’t until the week of the Florida event that the team decided to make a change. Earlier this week the team announced that they would be switching out JKap for Martin “Chino” Chino. Perhaps this was for the best, considering their results.
Optic Gaming vs. London
Optic was placed in the easier of the two brackets for the weekend with middle-tier teams. Additionally, the two powerhouse teams Chicago Huntsmen and Dallas Empire were also not present for the event. This gave Optic the best chance at securing a finals appearance. However, they came up short when they lost game one to the London Royal Ravens. London took Optic Gaming to a game five Search and Destroy after beating them 250-185 in the game four Hardpoint. The SnD went to round 11 where London outplayed Optic in a one-versus-two. London brought Optic Gaming down to the losers brackets where they would have to fight for their spot in the semi-finals.
The losers bracket run
After losing to London, the team would have to win the next three matches to get to championship Sunday. Paris Legion was the first to challenge Optic Gaming after losing to Atlanta Faze, and Paris got quickly swept by Optic in 3-0 fashion and were then out of the tournament. From there the team would rematch against London, whom they also swept 3-0. With a win over both Paris and London, Optic Gaming had secured themselves a place in the semi-finals against the Toronto Ultra.
Toronto came to the event with adjustments to their roster after also having rough past tournaments. Their lineup impressed Call of Duty fans that weekend as they managed to win both games against the Florida Mutineers and Minnesota Røkkr. Toronto played Optic close and took them to another game five, round 11 Search and Destroy. However, Toronto could not prolong their amazing weekend and fell to Optic Gaming, losing a one versus three.
The victory over Toronto Ultra took Optic Gaming to their first-ever finals appearance that season. The closest they had come prior was at their own home series where they lost to Dallas Empire in the semis. However, to win the Florida home series Optic would have to take down the Atlanta Faze. Atlanta had already won an event prior to coming to Florida at their own home series back in February. They came into the weekend looking for another shot at taking home a championship.
Optic started the game out great with a win over Atlanta in the game one Hardpoint. However, Faze answered back in the next three games, taking the series 3-1. While Optic might not have won the Florida home series, they managed to make their way to their first finals appearance. With the wins over London, Paris, and Toronto, they scored 30 Call of Duty points. This brings them from 9th place to 7th, passing Seattle and London. The team is really trying to write a redemption story.
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Danny Appleford is an esports journalist for Upcomer that started writing for Daily Esports in 2020. He now specializes in articles surrounding League of Legends, Call of Duty, VALORANT and Halo.