Call of Duty League Free Agents Period, Details Revealed – EsportsTalk

by Cody Perez in Call of Duty | Aug, 12th 2020

Activision has revealed the initial details regarding the second season of the Call of Duty League. While the first season is still ongoing, players, fans, and teams are already gearing up for what’s next. As part of that, the Call of Duty League free agents period has been revealed.

Activision Reveals Call of Duty League Draft Details Ahead of Playoffs Season

While the first season is still going on right now in the league, Activision ensures that teams and players alike know what to expect from the second season of the Call of Duty League soon. As such, the Call of Duty League free agents period has been detailed.

Those details were first shared with the 12 teams and their players in the league recently to give them an adequate heads-up and then shared with the entire community on the official site this week. Through these details, we can see what will likely happen next season.

Since we weren’t privy to too many details regarding the back end of the league and how players can move around between teams and the like, these details were unknown until now. Now, we know how teams will be able to sign new players and trade with other teams.

These details were surprisingly revealed just before the playoffs season begins. At the time of writing this, we are but a week away from the beginning of playoffs. It is shaping up to be the most important and exciting part of the entire inaugural season. That said, here’s what we know about the Call of Duty League free agents period.

Why the Call of Duty League Free Agents Period Exists

First and foremost, what is the Call of Duty League free agents period? Well, it is the time when players can shift around and move to another team, stay in their current one, or be traded to another team in exchange for a player or two.

There is only a short period in which contracts and the like can be extended or terminated, so teams and players have to make decisions quickly, or else they will be locked into them if the deadline reaches. That said, the time for joining new teams while being a free agent is much more open-ended.

The Call of Duty League free agent period even exists in the first place goes back to the whole reason the league is the way it is today. Activision decided to create a franchised league similar to the Overwatch League and those of other sports like the NFL and so on.

In the NFL and other sports leagues, there is a time between seasons when players and teams can terminate contracts, trade players, and allow players to sign with new teams. This period is an integral part of the experience, as it keeps the entertainment and competition fresh.

The same could likely be said for what will happen during the first Call of Duty League free agents period. The inaugural season has been great so far, but it certainly has its highs and lows. Some teams have been at the top the whole time while others have risen and fallen.

This free agent period allows teams like Minnesota Rokkr and others who fell behind to trade or sign on some new talent to hopefully reclaim the top five spot they had for a portion of the season. For other complex teams like OpTic Gaming LA, this could be their chance to add in one or two new players who could solidify their skill set.

And then there are teams like Los Angeles Guerrillas who have ended the season in last place officially (though this could technically change come time for the playoffs season). The Guerrillas, Surge, and other weak teams have a chance to sign on new players to at least do better than they did in the first season.

Season 1 End Date and Season 2 Start Dates Revealed

Through the announcement of the free agents period, we also now know the official start and end dates of the current season and the beginning of the next one. Competition won’t likely begin to happen in Season 2 until January 2021, but the season will begin long before that.

According to these details, the current 2020 league year will end on Sept. 13, at 11:59 pm PT. When that happens, the inaugural season will be officially over on paper, and it will be time for the next season to begin.

Right after that, on Sept. 14, at midnight PT, the second season of the Call of Duty League will officially kick-off, and everything will start its motion ahead of the first competitive event in the new year. This distinction is important, as some events can only happen after the new season has begun.

Also, some actions can only be taken before the end of the first season as well. This may seem like strange dates, especially since the championship will be long before that date. The first tournament won’t happen until next year, but it makes sense given the behind-the-scenes agreements that must happen.

How and When Will Players Be Able to Leave Teams

Through those two major dates, players will be able to move around and switch teams if they so choose. During that time, the 12 Call of Duty League teams will be able to terminate existing players’ contracts and sign new ones with other players.

Presumably, it is also during this time that any new league teams will be able to show up and start signing on their roster of players. But we won’t officially hear about any new teams in the league until a few months from now when they are getting ready for the first competition.

As for how players and teams can switch around, this is time-based and highly specific. First and foremost, the player has to be a free agent during the correct period, even to switch to another team.

But to be active during the Call of Duty League free agent period, the player and their existing team in Season 1 have to agree at the end of the current season. And it all comes down to the player contracts signed at the very start of the league’s first season.

Of course, this will likely differ from player to player. We aren’t necessarily privy to the information included in those original agreements. However, there could have been contracts for one year, two years, and so on.

But given that the league was only in its first season ever and that players and teams alike hadn’t had the opportunity to prove how strong or weak they would be, it is likely that the contracts were pretty short and sweet to allow for room for change.

It wouldn’t be too surprising if many of the contracts were only for the first year of the league. But the good thing is that if a player was amazing during their first season, teams have the chance to renew any expiring contracts so that they can stick around for another season or two.

That said, they don’t have until the end of the season even to happen as the deadline for extensions is Sept. 6. If the player’s contract is up then and it doesn’t get extended in time, it will formally terminate, and that player will enter the Call of Duty League free agents period with the chance to join any team.

Conversely, if a player has an active contract and goes beyond this season, they only have until then to agree to have it terminated, or else they will be legally stuck with that team for another year.

How Players Can Join New Teams

On the other hand, once the Call of Duty League free agents period has begun on Sept. 14 with the start of the second season, any free agents are formally able to join a new team. This is the time that teams can begin signing new players from either the league itself or Challengers and so on.

During this time, the league office will begin reviewing any new contracts for signing new players or trading players with other teams. Up until this point, even during the first season right now, players and prospective new teams can discuss transfers.

The only catch is that they aren’t able to finalize the deals and make any formal agreements until the new season has begun. Thus, it is likely that there are already some verbal, non-formal agreements made as you read this as we near the beginning of the playoffs season.

One of the bonuses that a player gets for their time in the league is the possibility of a buyout fee. If a team terminates a player’s non-guaranteed contract, the team will likely have to pay the minimum fee of 30 days of salary to the player if they have at least 30 days remaining in the term plus any earned but unpaid bonuses and prize money.

Pro Player Salary, Bonuses Revealed

Speaking of bonuses, these new details have given us some insight into the salary of the players in the Call of Duty League. Or, at the very least, it gives us an idea of the base salary that all players make no matter what. There is a standardized minimum salary across all 12 teams.

That salary is $50,900. It comes with not only the annual income but also healthcare and retirement benefits as well. Their actual salary could be more than that, though, if they are a starting player, reserve player, Challenger, and so on but no less than that.

Also, teams are required to directly provide at least 50% of all prize pool earnings to the players on their team. So, when the playoffs do happen, and teams are given money accordingly, at least 50% of that will go towards the team’s actual players, which is great.

When a player is newly signed onto a team in Season 2, some other temporary bonuses are given. Their new teams must offer housing to them for at least 90 days following the effective date of the player contract or trade approval if they are required to move to the team’s home region.

But fortunately for players, the league itself does not require the player to live in the cities that they represent in the league. On the other hand, teams can require this as part of the agreement but are likely required to assist in moving procedures.

Players Can Now Be Two-Way Players

Something that was announced as part of this that sounds brand new to us is the two-way player’s concept. In their initial contract, teams can indicate that a participant can be a two-way player for the season. This means that they can compete in Challengers or other Call of Duty esports competitions.

This is something that sounds very different compared to how the first season of the league was handled. During it, pros in the league were not allowed to compete in events outside of the normal league competitions. But this sounds like things could be changing this season.

This is fantastic news for players who end up sitting on the bench for a huge portion of the season. This season was a problem because players were unable to participate in other events, but if they didn’t compete in league matches, they just sat there all season long and did nothing at all.

But through this agreement, it seems like pro players can now compete in Challengers and other events so long as they stick to the rules in place with the league. For example, they can’t compete in a Challengers match for seven days after competing in an official match.

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