Another day closer to Call of Duty XP, and another rundown of the opening Pools.

Pool C:
Luminosity Gaming: Saints, NAMELESS, StuDyy, SpaceLy
 Mindfreak: BuZZO, Shockz, Fighta, Denz
 FAB Games eSports: Desire, Hawqeh, Vortex, Dqvee
 The Chiefs eSports Club: Dean, Hopey, macka, Rival

Pool C is once again a pool with a well known-NA team and a powerhouse non-NA team, this time from Australia. Luminosity Gaming made waves during Season 2 Playoffs when they eliminated the world’s best Call of Duty team, OpTic Gaming in the first round. Since then, LG has slowly fallen back to their old selves, with a 5th-6th place finish at MLG Orlando. With one of the most underrated players in the game in Saints, this LG team has the absolute potential to make a big run at Champs.

LG’s biggest opponent in this pool and one of the biggest question marks in the tournament is Mindfreak. Consistently the best Australian/New Zealand team, Mindfreak has been on a tear in Black Ops 3. Though, in tournaments involving US/EU teams, they haven’t finished too well, getting swept by Millenium at the Crowne Melbourne Invitational. In the end, don’t be shocked to see Mindfreak surprise some fans who may not know much about them.

The former Exertus lineup, FAB Games eSports, has not played on LAN in over a month where they finished 3rd-4th at Gfinity Summer Masters. While that isn’t a bad finish, the team hasn’t placed higher than 5th in any other LAN events. Online isn’t too much of a difference when determining skill, but could it be enough of a factor to keep this team out of bracket play?

The Chiefs have been a top Australian/New Zealand team throughout Black Ops 3. With a ton of 3rd-4th place finishes, they are one of the stronger four seeds in pool play. Their biggest plus in this pool is playing against Mindfreak. Despite Mindfreak being the better team, the Chiefs could be well prepared to face a familiar opponent.

Pool C Predictions:
I’m looking at Mindfreak to come out on top in this Pool. LG is a very good team, but Mindfreak has the potential to be better. That being said, I still think LG takes the 2nd transfer spot into bracket play.

Pool D:
 Renegades: Chino, Killa, Sender, Diabolic
 Team Allegiance: Mochila, Xotic, Royalty, Remy
 Epsilon eSports: Moose, SunnyB, Skrapz, Reedy
 PuLse Gaming: Cappeh, GefKid, Denz, ReaLiZe

Just announced today, the former Dream Team squad and the top team in Pool D was signed by the Renegades Organization and their new owner, Boston Celtics forward Jonas Jerebko. As a Boston sports fan, it’s very cool to see athletes investing into Call of Duty eSports, and as a Call of Duty fan, it’s great to see a player like Killa get some back up going into the biggest CoD tournament of all time. That being said, Renegades is the favorite in this pool. After finishing 2nd at Stage 2 Playoffs, they fell back down to Earth with a poor performance that MLG Orlando. This team has proven they can win, and I don’t see that changing come XP.

The second team in this pool is Team Allegiance. They’ve been flying under the radar with solid players in Mochila and Royalty, who really shined in Advanced Warfare. Although they have only played together for one event, a 13-16th finish at MLG Orlando, this team shows promise. Though, if I’m a betting man, I don’t see them making that much of an impact this weekend.

In my opinion, the 2nd best team in this pool is Epsilon eSports. While they haven’t performed much more than average in the EU scene, they have the long term chemistry and familiarity with each other that a team like Team Allegiance many not have. With a player like Moose leading the way, I look at Epsilon to make a nice run in the Pools.

Lastly, we have Pulse Gaming. They’re a relatively new team together as far as tournaments go, but if there is a pool to succeed it could be this one. Surrounded by teams that are very up and down, we could see Pulse have an upset or two.

Pool D Predictions:
I believe this is the first pool that I’m predicting the third team to make it out. While I think Renegades will be the best team out of this pool, I’m looking for Epsilon to take home the other transfer spot into bracket play.

Pool E:
 FaZe Clan: Clayster, Zooma, Attach, Enable
 Team eLevate: FeLony, AquA, Faccento, Nagafen
 Most Wanted: Blfire, TcM, TwiZz, Methodz
 Giants Gaming: Sammy, MethodZ, TojoR, Lgend

One of the most skilled teams in all of Call of Duty, FaZe has a fantasy team type roster. The veteran in Clayster, the two young guns in Attach and Zooma and the Multi-FPS legend Enable. While FaZe has, to their standards, under performed lately, there is no doubt that they will come to play and be a contender to take home the title at CoD XP.

Team Elevate has been a contender in the NA scene as well all through Black Ops 3. Placing 2nd at MLG Anaheim, and 3rd at MLG Orlando have been their high points so far throughout the year and with some great talent on their team, including one of the best Snipers in Nagafen, look for Elevate to make a strong run alongside FaZe.

The third NA team in this pool is Most Wanted. Now, as I mentioned earlier, I like to personally cheer for the local guys. TcM, a native of New Hampshire, is looking to help lead a team of relatively overlooked talent. Although, this may be the one pool they didn’t want to be in. It will certainly be tough to take down either Elevate or FaZe at a tournament like this.

Finally, we have Giants Gaming. The Spanish team has had a subpar year in Black Ops 3, but being able to qualify for this tournament is no easy feat. Despite qualifying, I can’t see Giants taking a transfer spot in this pool.

Pool E Predictions:
This won’t be a big surprise of a prediction, but I look at FaZe and Elevate to take the two top spots. Most Wanted will put up a battle, but in the end, I think the skill of the veteran teams will prevail.

Check back again on Wednesday for the final three Pools!