Preview for The DreamLeague Dota 2 Major

By: Mikele Schembri
Feb 09, 2019

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The upcoming DreamLeague Dota 2 Major will be the 6th Dota Pro Circuit event of this season but only the 3rd one that really matters. The other 3 are Minors and offer very few qualification points for The International 2019. As a result, they are simply a way of rewarding tier 2 teams with a good tournament of their own and grant them the possibility to still earn a spot at the corresponding Major that follows them.

The DreamLeague Dota 2 Major will be held in Stockholm, Sweden between March 14th – 24th. Practically, this is a massive event that will take place in one of the most important esports capitals in Europe.

With 16 of the world’s best teams attending the Stockholm Major, the thrilling matches and the betting opportunities will be numerous during the 11 days of the event. In this article, we will give you an analysis of what you can expect. We’ve tried to include the best teams, so that you can get a clearer picture of who they are.

The Main Contenders for The DreamLeague Dota 2 Major

These are the main contenders in the upcoming DreamLeague Dota 2 Major.

Team Secret

Based on what we’ve seen at the last Major, Team Secret are the strongest team in Dota 2 right now. This is not the first time when they have a roster that can beat the crap out of any opponent. But it’s certainly a very challenging season this year, simply because there are at least 4 teams apart from them that are very hard to beat.

At the Chongqing Major, Team Secret won the title by completely demolishing Virtus.pro in the Grand Final. The first two games combined ended in less than 40 minutes. Secret looked scary and went into the fight fully prepared.

Puppey’s strategies were so nasty that the audience could not believe how fast the spectacle was coming to a close. It was similar to one of those MMA fights in which one of the fighters knocks out the other in the first 15 seconds of the first round. Absolutely brutal performance from Secret. They did lose the 3rd game after having a massive lead. But in the 4th they proved that what had happened up until that point wasn’t accidental.

Because of the 2 Grand Finals they played at the first 2 Majors of the season, Team Secret are already qualified to The International 2019. However, given Puppey’s mindset and how he thinks about success, I don’t expect them to slow down for the rest of the season. They will likely look to dominate the opposition and keep on winning.

Going into the DreamLeague Dota 2 Major, we expect Secret to get at least a 3rd place finish. There are only 4 or 5 teams that could realistically beat them and the chances are very good for them to beat most of these adversaries. Until the meta changes dramatically, Secret are expected to be one of the most dominant teams in the circuit. And that’s because Puppey has figured out exactly how the current meta should be played.

Virtus.pro

Like Team Secret, Virtus.pro seem to be one step ahead of the other teams in their understanding of the current meta. Having won the first Major of the season and played in the Grand Final of the second Major, VP are now guaranteed a spot in The International 2019 and can enjoy themselves for the rest of the season, testing strategies and messing around with the other teams.

It is not yet clear how well Virtus.pro has recovered after the crushing defeat from the Grand Final of The Chongqing Major, but they’re probably studying Secret’s moves under the microscope. So far, the real battle has been between Puppey’s team and themselves, so we’re convinced that special preparations will be made to ensure a victory at DreamLeague Dota 2 Major when more than likely, they’ll meet the same opponent in a decisive match at some point.

Going into The Stockholm Major, VP should easily get a top 3 result, unless we’ll see miraculous performances from the likes of Evil Geniuses, NiP, PSG.LGD or Team Liquid.

Evil Geniuses

EG are crushing everyone in regional qualifiers but they have yet to find a way to beat Team Secret and Virtus.pro. At the first two Majors of the season, EG finished 3rd, losing against Virtus.pro the first time and against Team Secret the second time.

It’s probably very unpleasant for Arteezy and his teammates to always get eliminated right before the Grand Final. This has become a pattern for EG, who finished 3rd multiple times at Majors and even The International, including the latest edition (TI 8).

Going into the DreamLeague Dota 2 Major, the most natural result for EG would be anywhere between 3rd and 6th. The 1st and 2nd place seem unattainable at this point while anything below 6th or even 5th would be a complete disaster. Such a failure would also be highly improbable, as there aren’t that many teams capable of beating them at this point.

Ninjas in Pyjamas

NiP, ppd’s new team, finished 4th at the first Major of the season and then had a dark period of 2-3 months. Their failure to qualify for the second Major was mostly caused by their inability to adapt quickly enough to the new meta. After patch 7.20 got released, ppd got completely wrecked and he couldn’t understand what was going on even against tier 2 teams that happened to be more adaptable to the shifting viable hero pool and item builds.

However, since ppd is one of the greatest captains in the history of the game, he quickly understood his mistakes and during the recent qualifiers for the DreamLeague Dota 2 Major he demolished everyone in Europe including Team Secret. It was an impressive performance from his team so we’re looking forward to seeing them in action at the LAN.

Going into The Stockholm Major, NiP should easily get a top 6 finish in their current form. The most probable result is a 5th place finish, but with a victory against Team Secret in the recent European qualifier, we wouldn’t be surprised to see them doing even better than that.

PSG.LGD

PSG.LGD finished last season as the team that almost won The International. Somehow, it slipped through their fingers in that 5th and most important game of their lives.

In this new season, PSG.LGD had decent performances, finishing 5th – 6th at The Kuala Lumpur Major and 4th at The Chongqing Major. Overall, they’re sitting at number 4 in the DPC rankings table and are still one of the best teams in the world. Apart from the titans mentioned on this list, few teams could take them down. Perhaps Team Liquid on a good day, but we can’t think of anyone else.

Going into the DreamLeague Dota 2 Major, we expect PSG.LGD to improve their result from last time and aim for the 3rd position. It will be hard, as both Evil Geniuses and Ninjas in Pyjamas will be around to contest them, while Team Secret and Virtus.pro are still lightyears away. But with a little bit of luck, they can definitely do it.