Predicting the CDL Offseason: LA Thieves
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With the 2022 Call of Duty League Championship done and dusted, we can continue our series predicting what each CDL team will do in the offseason. We’ve gone through the four teams that weren’t at Champs previously and now we’ll tackle the eight teams that competed at the event. There’s no better way to start than at the top with the LA Thieves. The Thieves took home the victory at Champs, going on an unprecedented run – at least by 2022 standards – to win back-to-back events.

If you asked fans before Major IV began what LA’s offseason would look like, you’d presumably hear that roster changes were necessary. The roster of Drazah, Octane, Kenny, and Envoy was not performing well up until Major IV, and many fans felt the team needed a shake-up in order to compete with the top teams. LA proved those doubters wrong at the end of the year, so their offseason outlook has changed dramatically.

The LA Thieves’ current roster

LA Thieves Envoy
Provided by CDL

With a Champs win under their belt, the LA Thieves will not make any starting roster changes in the 2022 offseason. Unless something truly catastrophic happens internally with the roster, the Thieves will look the same heading into 2023. That goes for the starting roster as well as the coaching staff. Jkap and Muddawg will presumably lead the way while new addition Shane will continue to be a more analytic coach.

This formula worked out in 2022 and the Thieves will certainly want to see if it can continue in 2023. The biggest question that faces the roster will be roles. Kenny famously started the Vanguard season off as an AR player but then made the switch to an SMG mid-season. This change worked wonders for LA, as Kenny was able to dominate the map moving at a faster pace.

However, it’s unclear how Modern Warfare 2 will play in terms of pace and meta. Will the meta be a classic 2 AR, 2 SMG set up, or call for something different? Whenever teams begin to figure that out, LA will need to determine if even more role changes are required. Perhaps Drazah and Kenny could once again swap roles depending on their comfort levels. This will be the biggest question facing this roster heading into 2023 and Modern Warfare 2.

Looking at possible moves for LA Thieves

As previously aforementioned, we can’t foresee any situation where the LA Thieves don’t trot out the same starting roster for the first event of 2023. So, their possible moves really center around the substitute role. The team currently has Challengers player Pentagram signed as their substitute, but perhaps the Thieves want to upgrade that spot in the 2022 offseason.

LA would presumably hope they have no need for a sub throughout 2023, but it never hurts to have stability in the sub role. They could also begin grooming a current Challengers player in hopes of getting them ready for a possible starting role in 2024. While current sub Pentagram was on a top Challengers roster in 2022, there were certainly better players throughout the season.

Perhaps the Thieves could bring in a former pro, such as GodRx or Pandur, to really fill out the substitute spot in addition to bringing aboard a raw player, like Minnesota ROKKR did with Fame. It’s difficult to predict who LA could bring in if they did want to upgrade their substitute role, though.

Aside from that, there’s not much to talk about for the Thieves’ offseason. They clearly have the starting roster and coaching staff they want heading into Modern Warfare 2. Maybe roster change talks start up again if LA has a rough start to the 2023 season, but we’ve seen how much patience the organization has.

The LA Thieves are one of a few teams that should have an easy offseason. We would be utterly surprised to see them make a move that impacts the starting roster or coaching staff.

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.