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Call of Duty League Player Profile: Eli "Standy" Bentz

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Coming into his second season in the CDL, Eli "Standy" Bentz exploded on the scene as one of the better SMG players in the Call of Duty League. He began his run in the CDL with the Minnesota RØkkr in 2021, then started the 2022-2023 season with the Toronto Ultra.

While he was with Ultra, they found plenty of success but couldn’t find ways to close out their Champs run in Majors 1 and 2. During the Major 3 Qualifiers, Ultra made the decision to bench Standy and then eventually released him before the Major 4 Qualifiers.

The Vegas Legion saw their opportunity to make a serious push for Champs, scooping him up to help them make their first-ever Winners Bracket in Major 4. Their run in Qualifiers was promising for their chances at Champs, with Standy being a big reason for their success. Sitting just 20 points behind the Champs line and 50 points behind the 6 seed, every game has something on the line for Vegas.

Allowing Standy to play his style and having his teammates play off of him paid dividends right away. They have one final Major to push their way into Champs and if their last Qualifiers performance is any indication, there’s plenty to be excited about.

We sat down with Standy to talk about what it’s like going from being benched, to starting on a new team, strategy on Control, and a CDL player he would like to be his duo.

What is that mindset that you have to go through when you go from being benched to being released and then signing to a new team, those three steps? Tell me a little bit about the process and what you have to go through for that.

Being benched is never fun, honestly and especially it was a little unexpected for me. I know I didn't have the best series, but getting benched is tough, especially when you're hanging around with the team for a long time and becoming good friends with them. You become friends with everyone even when teams have facilities. You meet all these people, and you become friends with them and some of them you come close with. Then one day, it's just like you're gone, you're benched and being benched definitely leaves a little bit of an awkwardness between the players and the team for a little bit. You question yourself a little bit, like, what exactly was I doing wrong? What could I do better? So it's stressful. I didn't like it, to be honest, and that was the first time I was ever in a situation like that. I feel like all I could do is just believe in myself, regroup and come back stronger than ever.

Tell me a little bit about that. Getting to that new team and finding that chemistry quickly.

Going to a new team, any team and getting chemistry with players is tough at times. Everyone's trying to learn each other's new play styles and learn how each other plays as a team. The best thing they did for me was they said, “Play how you want to play. We’ll play around you.” It's just the integration. One thing I was just telling myself was I'm going to go in there and just do what I think I do best and just go really hard and play how I think I play best. That's really what went in my head, and I wanted to go out there and show it, so that was my goal.

Tell me a little bit about your teammates. You’ve got some legends on your team - Clay, Teej, Don - they're legends. What's it like playing with those three?

All three of them have completely different personalities. That's the one thing I've noticed. They're all three very different people. But the differences make us strong in some ways. It's just fun getting to learn from Clayster- one of the all-time greats. He brings a completely different vibe to the game than some of the other teammates I played with, so it's definitely fun to learn from him and see the way that he views the game. Same with Teej. He’s been an SMG for years, and he’s definitely up there as one of the great players. I just like collaboration. Just bouncing off them, them bouncing off me, them learning about me. It's just fun. New faces, learning about them in-game and out-of-game.

What do you think about going into a round of Control? How do you start that match and then progressively, as you get through each round - you lose a round or win a round- how's that strategy play out from start to finish?

From the start of control, you have two points, you have an A and B point, and the majority of the time, one point is much easier to get than the other point. So I think for ranked play, at least for most people to play, you want to start control on offense going for that easy point first, whether that's, for example, on Asilo, that's usually the A point, on Hotel it's usually the A point, on Expo it's the B point. So those are the easy points initially, and you just want to cap the first point. After that, just keep hitting the team pushes to the hardpoint. But on defense, you just want to prioritize not allowing them to get the hard point, basically. On Asilo, it’s B, on Expo it's A and on Hotel is B. Like the game mode says - it’s Control - So just hold map control, get kills and make sure you don't go four dead at once. You can never go four dead all at once in Control. That's bad news. So play your life. The best part is you want to set up a team push, whether that's let’s all hit through the base and trade out kills, let's wrap this. But I think it just comes into play like whatever you're doing, just try to use teamwork and make sure if you die, someone else is getting the kill. You're making progressions toward map control and getting the point. I'm that guy that loves taking routes. I'll hit a long route, flank, get a kill, spawn tap that guy then get on the point for my boys.

Who is a Call of Duty league player, past or present, someone you have not teamed with that you would want to be your duo?

There are a lot of good players out there. Maybe in some parallel universe, It'd be cool to play with Envoy, I think he's a good player.