2021 NXL World Cup Event Preview Pt. 1
With the 2021 NXL season finally coming to an end, there is a lot riding on the line for this World Cup after a shortened 2020 season due to COVID. Today we are going to take a quick dive into the bottom 10 ranked teams and what will need to happen for them to avoid relegation. This World Cup is going to be the make or break tournament for a lot of these teams and their possible futures.
#20 AC Dallas – So much to say about this team right here, they were offered an opportunity we all loathe and spend years trying to achieve. When the opportunity arose, they stepped up to the challenge launching themselves from Division 2, all the way to playing against the top teams in the sport. This team had a lot to prove and almost nothing to lose. As the season continued, they showed they had the grit to hang with the big dogs, but still needed another season to fully develop the talent that they have.
#19 ML Kings – ML Kings haven’t had the easiest go of it in the 2021 season, but have shown flashes of potential in key moments. In the beginning of the 2020 season, the MLK Kings made a decision to field mostly American players due to travel restrictions. This caused the team to have a large turnover in their roster which has set back their ability to really gel as a cohesive unit on the field. This team has the weapons necessary to hold their own in the NXL, but will it be enough to avoid relegation at the 2021 World Cup?
#18 Sacramento DMG – Such a young and upcoming team. With the guidance of Dave Baines, it's only a matter of time that this team starts to see a string of success. DMG lost several of their core players to San Diego Aftermath in the off season this past offseason. However, despite losing that core group of players the team has still shown signs of success, just barely losing to some of the top 10 teams in the league. As the young talent starts to become more seasoned in their pursuit of being a more competitive team, we might start seeing more wins from this young and hungry DMG team.
#17 Columbus LVL – Not only did the 2020 season bring about a lot of disruption due to the shortened season, but it also brought new beginnings for a couple upcoming teams. One of which is LVL. With their merger with former pro team PC Katana, this paved the way for a new team to help mix up the pro division. The team had shown some success at the beginning of their debut year, but then seemed to struggle at the start of the 2021 season. But after Chicago, the team started to put the pieces together, giving their best showing in the pro division yet (6th out of 20).
#16 Seattle Uprising – You never know what you’re going to get when you play this team. They are the epitome of up in your face paintball and are always on the attack. Though the team seems to struggle with consistency over the last few years in the pro division, they are either playing all the way to Sunday and placing in the top 8 or they are struggling to beat teams they should be beating easily. What does the team need to stay at the top is a mystery to us all, but this fast paced World Cup layout may help them finish off their 2021 season strong.
#15 TMG Outlaws – Jeremy Salm has been trying to make the Midwest a powerhouse area for paintball for almost a decade now. However, his team has been having issues keeping veterans and young killers on his squad since their induction into the pro ranks back in 2016. The team has had some success in the NXL Pro Division, winning a few matches over the years but can’t seem to keep the same roster each year. Without a successful steady roster, are they doomed to be a middle of a pack team that will always struggle trying to make it to Sunday Paintball? Or will they finally solidify a roster that will finally take them to the Sunday club for the first time since 2017?
#14 Los Angeles Ironmen – Such a legendary household name that seems so shocking to talk about being in the bottom 10 of the pro division. This team really leaves most of the league and competitors baffled with their not-so stellar performances over the last few years. This team has had so many incarnations over the years but has always seen some type of success in making it to Sunday. However, even with some of the powerhouse players that have brought on and even brought in young talent, this team still struggles at times. How long will it take for the team to finally find their stride again before we see the Shield back up on a podium again?
#13 NRG Elite – Another team that was able to get their way into the pro ranks, by a merge of an old pro team (Boom). Since their debut in 2020, this team always showed some promise of having a possible successful career in the pro ranks. For anyone following them this 2021 season, they have done nothing, but improve with each tournament they have competed in. Especially after the NXL Windy City Major, will this team be able to go on another rampage again at Cup by knocking out some more successful teams? Or will they fall short on one of the biggest battle grounds of their careers.
#12 New York Xtreme – Ahh every one’s favorite trash talking team. Not only are these guys fun to watch due to their ham like nature, but their style of play is something amazing to watch. A team that used to be so dominant in the semi pro division has had some trouble finding footing in the pro ranks. Over the last couple seasons, they have been able to add a few more veterans and attackers to their roster which should make them more dangerous than ever. Will the help of Rich Telford, legendary XSV player, be enough to push this team to the top of the ranks?