MDL Disneyland is the 4th Major of the Dota Pro Circuit and one of the last two chances to score enough points in order to secure a top 12 spot in the DPC rankings and a direct invite to The International 2019.
MDL Disneyland is scheduled to take place in Paris, France between May 4th – 12th. The event is guaranteed to attract a lot of spectators, as 7ckngMad has qualified for the event with OG and the fact that he is both French and the reigning TI champion will probably make a lot of people want to see him compete.
Like every DPC Major, MDL Disneyland brings together 16 teams and offers one million dollars in prizes as well as 15.000 qualification points for TI 9.
MDL Disneyland Participants
MDL Disneyland features almost all of the world’s best teams. These competitors come from the standard six regions and are expected to deliver a show that’s just as good as The International.
- Europe: Team Secret, Team Liquid, OG, Ninjas in Pyjamas
- CIS: Virtus.pro, Team Empire
- North America: Evil Geniuses, compLexity Gaming, TEAM TEAM
- South America: Chaos Esports Club, paiN Gaming
- China: PSG.LGD, Keen Gaming, Vici Gaming
- SEA: Fnatic, Mineski
This is a collection of former and current champions with a few underdogs in between. It’s very difficult to say at this point who might win, but we’ll analyze the usual suspects and offer our best assessment of the situation.
MDL Disneyland Points Distribution
The qualification points offered at MDL Disneyland will be shared among the 16 participants in the following way:
- 1st place: 4950
- 2nd place: 3000
- 3rd place: 2100
- 4th place: 1350
- 5th – 6th place: 900
- 7th – 8th place: 450
- 9th – 12th place: 150
- 13th – 16th place: 75
Based on this distribution, a lot of the teams that aren’t in the top 12 at this point would need only a 5th – 6th place result in order to reach that privileged division. And that’s because there are plenty of low hanging TI tickets at this point. No less than five of the top 12 teams have less than 1000 points. The one with the lowest number of them is Team Liquid (525) while the one with the highest is Keen Gaming (990).
In all likelihood, both Team Liquid and Keen Gaming will jump a few positions after MDL Disneyland. But the other three teams aren’t even present at the event. EHOME, TNC Predator and J.Storm have missed the tournament and will have to watch from home as some of the other competitors will likely replace them in the top 12.
MDL Disneyland Event Format
MDL Disneyland takes place in two stages. For the Group Stage (May 4th – 5th), the teams will be divided into four groups. The top two teams from each group advance to the Upper Bracket of the Playoffs. The bottom two teams advance to the Lower Bracket. Every match is a Bo3 series.
The Playoffs Stage (May 6th – 12th) is played in a double-elimination format. The Grand Final is Bo5. The first round of Lower Bracket matches is Bo1. Every other match will be Bo3.
The first five days of the tournament will be played without an audience. The final four days will take place in the Disney Events Arena.
MDL Disneyland Groups
The groups of MDL Disneyland are the following:
- Keen Gaming
- TEAM TEAM
- Team Liquid
This team will likely be dominated by Virtus.pro and Keen Gaming, unless Team Liquid has managed to find a winning formula since we’ve last seen them. They’ve been struggling quite a bit this season and the loss of Heen turned out to be a lot more significant than everyone had anticipated. His departure clearly showed that coaches do matter in this game even if they’re not even nearly as accomplished as the players they coach.
- Team Secret
- Ninjas in Pyjamas
- Team Empire
- Chaos Esports Club
This a very easy group for Team Secret. The other teams will have to battle it out between themselves in order to determine who gets the 2nd place. In principle, the winner of this battle should be NiP. However, they are known to choke at random times so nothing is certain. This season they’ve been all over the place. Just recently, they won the title at Dota PIT Minor. But previous to that success, they hadn’t had a good result since the start of the season, when they finished 4th at the first DPC Major.
- Vici Gaming
- paiN Gaming
This game has Vici Gaming and PSG.LGD as the two big favorites to advance to the Upper Bracket of the Main Event. Mineski’s chances are slim, while paiN Gaming’s are virtually zero. And to make matters even more predictable, VG will play against paiN in the opening game while PSG.LGD will play against Mineski. So we’re pretty much sure that the Chinese competitors will dominate the group.
- Evil Geniuses
- compLexity Gaming
What a rough group for OG! We were hoping to see them in a group where they might be able to secure an Upper Bracket result, but these opponents look very tough to beat. At the previous Major, Fnatic finished 3rd. In the overall DPC rankings, EG is sitting at number four. The 4th team, compLexity is a non-factor. But it’s going to be painful to watch OG get smashed by both Fnatic and EG, unless of course they have managed to regain their former strength.
The opening matches are EG vs. coL and OG vs. Fnatic. Even if they win this first match, OG will have to beat Fnatic again in order to finish 2nd. That’s because they’ll almost surely lose the subsequent encounter with EG. In any case, it’s probably possible for OG to lose this first match, then beat coL and then try one more time, probably against Fnatic. Because we do expect EG to play better at this Major than they did at DreamLeague Season 11.
MDL Disneyland Main Favorites
The main favorites for winning the MDL Disneyland title are Virtus.pro, Team Secret, Vici Gaming, Fnatic and Evil Geniuses. Each of these teams could make a great run at the tournament. If you plan on betting on Dota, these teams are probably your best bet.
The most consistent teams so far have been Virtus.pro and Team Secret, so we expect at least one of them in the Grand Final. It will be interesting to see how Chinese squads have evolved in recent months. We’ve only seen Keen Gaming and they are in great shape, ready to take over the world.
PSG.LGD is another team to watch, although their whole season has been a bit underwhelming. Fnatic’s last Major went spectacularly well and we almost thought that they would go all the way. If they’ve been training hard since that event, we may see them explode this time.
Underdogs At MDL Disneyland
Not everyone is at the same level of skill and at least four of the 16 teams are expected to get destroyed at MDL Disneyland. These teams are TEAM TEAM, compLexity Gaming, paiN Gaming, and Team Empire. Other possible underdogs that may get crushed without having a chance to reply are Chaos Esports Club, Mineski and OG. However, these teams are potential dark horses, so you should be careful when assessing their strength.