The first preseason event for the 2021 Call Of Duty League took place last weekend with all 12 teams competing in one best of 5 series. The league is entering its second year which is also its second year exclusively streaming on YouTube Gaming, the fastest growing live streaming platform last year. The peak viewership of the 2021 Kickoff Classic also from last year’s Launch Weekend; an already impressive growth rate considering the 2021 Kickoff Classic was a preseason event whereas the 2020 Launch Weekend was the first regular season event of the League’s inaugural season.
- The Chicago-based franchise (Chicago Huntsmen now turned OpTic Chicago) were part of both top matches from each event. Some of the most popular players, like Seth “Scump” Abner among others, were rostered on both Chicago teams and have some of the largest followings in the league.
- The LA Thieves is the franchise from extremely popular esports organization 100 Thieves, founded by Call Of Duty legend Matthew “Nadeshot” Haag. This will be the first year the LA Thieves participate in the Call Of Duty League as the organization announced the franchise spot and branding only a few months ago. The hype around the team likely contributed to the high overall peak viewership.
- Although the 2021 Kickoff Classic was only a preseason event, it set the tone for upcoming viewership for the Call Of Duty League once the regular season is underway. Expect big matches between popular teams like OpTic Chicago, LA Thieves, and defending champs Dallas Empire to spark even higher peak viewership during the season.