| 17. August 2021

i-League 2021 Season 2 Predictions and Preview

i-League 2021 Season 2 is the last Chinese tournament ahead of The International 10. What we know is that PSG.LGD is probably the strongest team in the region. However, Ame’s team will not attend this tournament and every other major competitor in China will. This creates a perfect opportunity to discover who the 2nd best team is. Statistics seem to indicate that Elephant, but we can know for sure until we watch the fight.

i-League 2021 Season 2 Details

i-League 2021 Season 2 is scheduled to take place between August 18th – September 5th. The tournament features 7 teams, which is a peculiarity in Dota 2. However, this happens from time to time when a team declines to participate and the organizers don’t want to replace it.

Competitive Format

The competitive format of i-League 2021 Season 2 obviously had to take into account the unusual number of teams. ImbaTV decided to simply put all of the participants in one group and do a round-robin. The top two teams advance to the second round of the Upper Bracket. The next 4 teams advance to the first round. The bottom team is eliminated. Every match is Bo3, apart from the Grand Final (Bo5).

Given the deep familiarity that some of the teams have with each other, I think this format favors the strongest competitors. When a less forgiving format is used, a top team may end up playing against its nemesis and get eliminated simply because there is an adversary in the race that has their number and understands exactly how they play.

Prize Distribution

i-League 2021 Season 2 offers $185,000 in prizes. The money will be divided among the 7 teams in the following way:

  • 1st place: ~$66,000
  • 2nd place: ~$46,000
  • 3rd place: ~$31,000
  • 4th place: ~$19,000
  • 5th place: ~$9,000
  • 6th place: ~$9,000
  • 7th place: ~$5,000


i-League 2021 Season 2 will feature the usual suspects.

  • Team Aster
  • Vici Gaming
  • RNG
  • Elephant
  • Team MagMa
  • Invictus Gaming
  • Aries

The big battles will take place between Aster, Vici Gaming, iG, and Elephant. RNG could also cause some upsets, but they are unlikely to play in the Grand Final.

In the absence of PSG.LGD, the big favorite is Elephant. This team needs a victory here to build their morale for The International 10. Its roster is off-the-charts in terms of strength and accomplishments, but for some reason, it struggled the entire season and had to go through qualifiers to get a TI 10 ticket.

It’s a bit difficult to assess the situation because we don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes and what is keeping these great players from performing at their full capacity. But something must be happening. Otherwise, they would easily win every single tournament.


Photo credit: Valve