Dota Pro Circuit 2021 is entering Season 2. But prior to the start of the second half, some of the teams decided to make big changes to their rosters. I’ll analyze the most important ones below.
Black N Yellow Sign EternaLEnVy
EE really needs no introduction at this point. He’s notorious for what he does and he has quite a reputation for kicking teammates or pushing teams into giving up someone in order to bring in a different player. But he also happens to be a strong carry who can secure victories for his team.
BNY finished the first DPC season in 6th place in the North American region and I expect them to get a similar result in season 2. Unless of course EternaLEnVy can boost their performance significantly. As a region, NA is divided in half. There are 4 teams that play at a very high level and then there’s everybody else. I think it will be hard for BNY to change that, but who knows? We’ll have to wait and see.
Team SMG Sign kpii and MidOne
Team SMG is now a formidable competitor, especially for the division that they’re in. The Lower Division in Southeast Asia is not exactly world-class, so I fully expect SMG to advance to the Upper Division at the end of Season 2.
Both MidOne and kpii are exceptional players who have vast experience in competing against the world’s best teams. They both won big events and were in the Grand Finals of Minors, Majors, and even TIs. It’s not entirely clear how a team like SMG managed to get their hands on two tier 1 players, but I suspect that they agreed to do it just because the team has little competition in the region and is likely to win even the qualifiers for TI 10.
Nigma Sign iLTW
This is a young Russian player who’s decent in the Mid and Carry roles. But so far, we haven’t seen him play for a long period of time for one team. Everyone seems to like him as a stand-in but that’s about it. For a while, he even played for OG back in 2019. But the team dropped him after just 2 months.
Nigma decided to bench w33 in order to bring iLTW, and I don’t think that the Russian player is stronger than the two-time TI finalist who’s absolutely amazing on Meepo, Invoker, Windranger and other heroes. But we’ll have to see. No doubt, KuroKy made this change after the failure from ONE Esports Singapore Major. But let’s not forget that his team had to play without MC in that tournament. Personally, I don’t think that w33 was the problem. But when teams don’t get what they want, they usually start making changes even if those changes aren’t necessarily logical.
EHOME Sign Sylar
It’s been 6 months since we’ve last seen Sylar playing for a top Chinese team. He almost got signed by Elephant back in October last year and prior to that he competed for EHOME for almost a year. But since those days, EHOME has become a totally different team. In 2021, this former Chinese giant hasn’t done very well so far. EHOME failed to qualify for the Singapore Major and probably made this change because they felt like Ahjit, their former carry, was simply not good enough.
Sylar is an absolute legend in Dota 2. He’s been in the Grand Final of Major events and he finished 3 times in the top 3 at The International. At only 27 years old, he’s a very accomplished player.
OG Bring Back ana
This is by far the most exciting transfer of this window and I expect it to completely change OG’s performance. The team failed to qualify for the first Major of the season and has to qualify for the second one and hopefully do well in it, if they want to avoid the regional qualifiers for The International 10.
This wouldn’t be the first time when ana joins OG and carries them to big results. It wouldn’t even be the second time. Nor the 3rd. This is actually the 4th time when ana plays for OG and if he can do it as well as he did before, Ceb and his crew have a great second half of the season ahead of them. The most important objective is qualifying for TI 10. Although, knowing ana’s ambitions, I’m pretty sure they’re convinced they can win it for the 3rd consecutive time, in spite of being, as usual, just an underdog.
Photo credit: Valve