TORONTO, Ontario — Entering the Call of Duty League 2022 Major III, the Paris Legion’s lower bracket start was a reflection of their overall 2022 season. After getting to another LAN tournament, this time one outside of the United States, the Paris Legion couldn’t overcome the local crowd favorite Toronto Ultra in their lower bracket matchup. Even though the Ultra lost in front of the crowd the day before, they clearly put that loss behind them in the match against the Legion. Paris’ story so far has remained the same — close, but never close enough — and star player Donovan “Temp” Laroda’s frustration is clear.
“I think we performed as expected; we’re not in the best spot right now,” Temp said. “We need to play a lot better. We’ve been trying to work hard all year, but even with our best, it wasn’t enough.”
An early lead disappears
In the lower bracket series, the Legion waited to see which opponents they would end up against. That team was the hometown Toronto Ultra, who lost to the Atlanta FaZe; putting Paris in a bad position. Not only did they need to win in order to keep their hopes alive, their opponents had the home field advantage.
As the crowd was quieted by a Paris Legion first map win, led by Temp, whispers of another upset in the Major began swirling around the venue. However, it wasn’t meant to be, with a dominant round of Search and Destroy on Tuscan kicking off the Ultra’s eventual win. Especially with only one match in the tournament so far, this loss was the worst kind of loss for Paris, one where there was little to learn.
“Personally, I don’t make much from it,” Temp said. “They’re just a better team, they were way more coordinated than us. We’ve seen that problem, we know that issue and we just haven’t come together as a team to fix that issue.”
Temp’s individual skill shines through
In general, the Paris Legion have relied on Temp’s skill in their matches, whether they end up winning or losing. Before heading into the Major III, Temp was top five league-wide in multiple stats. In particular, his Hardpoint play has always been great, sitting at fifth in kills per 10 minutes (26), first in damage per 10 minutes (3,217) and fourth in kill-to-death ratio (1.12). Even with those consistently top performances, the constant losses are tough on Temp and the Legion.
“I want to win, it’s a simple answer, “ Temp said. “At least I’m getting support, that’s been good, makes me feel like my work is being appreciated, but I still want to win.”
Paris Legion’s LAN and their future
The Legion didn’t have many fans on their side at the Major 3 LAN, especially against the hometown Ultra. Paris ultimately needed the LAN time, however, even if the problems haven’t disappeared with the switch. “If the team wants to compete for the rest of 2022, there can’t be any more excuses,” according to Temp. He adds that the team knows what the problems are, and now they have to get to work and fix them.
“I think we’re better on LAN, especially since we’re the only team that doesn’t play in a facility,” Temp said. “It definitely helps to have the experience, but we’re still in the situation where we got a lot of stuff hindering us. We can’t make excuses anymore, we should’ve already been good. We should’ve fixed this problem since we’ve known it’s been a problem for so long.”
About the Author
Polish-Canadian game enthusiast. I've been entrenched in gaming for as long as I can remember, with my first game being Pokemon Yellow and my most played games being Borderlands 2 and Overwatch. I have a degree in Film Studies, but writing about esports just makes my job all the better.