It’s once again time for our weekly round-up. We’ve got the latest news from the World Electronic Sports Games and will preview the USD DreamLeague Season 11.
Let’s start with the latter.
Dota 2 DreamLeague Season 11 Preview
Sixteen teams will line up at the Dota 2 DreamLeague Season 11 tournament, which will take place March 14-24. Alongside a bumper prize pool, a further 15,000 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) points are up for grabs.
This is the third Major of the 2018-19 DPC season, and the final three days of the tournament will be played in front of a live audience.
The sixteen teams have been divided into four groups of four:
- Group A – Team Secret, Team Liquid, J.Storm, Keen Gaming
- Group B – PSG.LGD, Fnatic, Ninjas in Pyjamas, Infamous
- Group C – Virtus.pro, EHOME, Mineski, Forward Gaming
- Group D – Evil Geniuses, Vici Gaming, Chaos Esports Club, Natus Vincere
The top two from each group will qualify for the upper bracket of the playoffs. Then, the two teams finishing in the bottom two places of each group will earn a spot in the lower bracket. The teams that win through both brackets will face off against each other in the Grand Final for a prize of $350,000 for the winner as well as 4,950 DPC points.
Currently, the bookmakers have Team Secret and Team Liquid, who have both been drawn together in a very tough looking Group A, as the joint 12/5 favourites. Then, Virtus.pro is rated as the next best option at 5/1.
Outside of this trio, Evil Geniuses are 10/1, with both Vici Gaming and PSG.LGD rated around the 14/1 mark.
To recap some season action, Virtus.pro won the Kuala Lumpur Major back in November. Then, at the end of January, Team Secret won the Chongqing Major in China. Both now sit at the top of the DPC rankings, almost 4,000 points clear of Evil Geniuses in third.
The action kicked off yesterday in Sweden.
TNC Predator tops WESG Dota 2 tournament
Although they are regulars at many of the top Dota 2 events, Philippines-based team TNC Predator earned one of its biggest-ever paydays over the weekend in Chongqing.
The victory was their second at this event and followed on from their success in 2016, which saw them land an even larger prize of $800,000.
Since then, it has been a rather quiet time for TNC. In this event, they began in Group C with five other teams and escaped without a loss, winning three and drawing two of their five matches.
Then, TNC Predator found their best form in the playoffs. They defeated Team Canarinho from Brazil in the quarterfinals 2-0 sweeping White-Off in the semifinals. In the final, they faced Keen Gaming and eluded all defeats yet again.
TNC Predator will next play at the Southeast Asian qualifier for ESL One Mumbai 2019.
Overwatch World League update
New York Excelsior have won all seven of their Overwatch World League Stage One games so far in the second season. This puts them firmly at the top of the Atlantic Division and the league writ large.
But the Vancouver Titans are hanging in too. They have one game to play in Week 5 and boast a 6-0 record heading into that game. The Canadians are the top team in the Pacific Division, two wins ahead of Dallas Fuel.
At the other end of the scale, Los Angeles Valiant have had a poor start. They’ve lost all seven of their games while Washington Justice have lost all of the five of theirs.
Three teams have confirmed their places in the playoffs at this point: Excelsior, Titans and the Toronto Defiant.
Seven teams will not: the Los Angeles Gladiators, Hangzhou Spark, Shanghai Dragons, Chengdu Hunters, and the Florida Mayhem, plus the two teams without wins — the Justice and Valiant.
It should also be noted that although they failed to make the playoffs, Shanghai Dragons, last season’s perennial losers did win three games out of the seven they played in Stage 1.
That leaves the remaining teams battling it out for the final five places in the playoffs. It promises to be a very close fight in Week 5.