Well, what do we have here! Ladies and gents, the time has come around again! I am happy to announce the culmination of the second Valve sponsored Dota 2 Major tournament of the year. The Season 11 of the Dream League by Dreamhack.
This event will be a 10-day event which will start on March 14th all the way to March 24th. This tournament will, of course, be a part of the prestigious Dota Pro Circuit League, and thus it will award a total prize pool of $1,000,000 and also 15,000 DPC points to be distributed among the teams.
The eventual winner of this event will get the lion’s share of the purse, $350,000 in cash and also 4,950 DPC points. As for the venue of the event, it will be held right at the home of Dreamhack, at the heart of Stockholm, Sweden.
Today we are going to check the status of each team attending the event and also make some betting predictions for the Dreamleague Season 11 Dota 2 battle.
There will be a total of 16 squads that will be duking it out in this tournament. 15 of those said teams have rightfully earned their spots during the recent qualifiers last month.
There will be three squads coming from Europe, China and North America. The CIS, South East Asia, and South American region had 2 representatives each. The last slot will be filled by the winner of the Star Ladder Minors that happened just at a couple of days ago.
The European teams are the newbies Ninjas in Pyjamas, the veterans Team Secret and the TI7 winner Team Liquid. Representing the Chinese region are PSG LGD, the legendary EHome, and Keen Gaming. North America will have the TI5 winners Evil Geniuses, the Jeremy Lin owned J Storm and Forward Gaming.
The CIS region has the powerhouse Virtus Pro and the new Natus Vincere. South East Asia will be represented by Fnatic led by iceiceice and Mineski. And lastly, Chaos Esports Club and the SA mainstays Infamous representing the South American region. For the last spot, it will be Vici Gaming as they have won the Star Ladder Minor event.
There have been a few roster changes prior to the start of the tournament. Robo Z, who was the main carry of Infamous will be replaced by Mason, an ex EG player due to health reasons. We still have no word if Robo Z will return in the future or not, but for now, Mason will be filling in for that hard carry role.
Faith Bian will be on medical extended leave due to him dislocating his shoulder during a video shoot in MDL Changsa. XinQ will be taking his spot on the offlane role. Also, Ego who was EHome’s hard carry left the team just at the end of February. Never End, who used to play for Root was signed by EHome to fill Ego’s role.
Somnus`M, who plays the mid lane for PSG LGD will also be taking a hiatus due to personal and health reasons. He will be replaced by XM who currently plays for CDEC.
The format for this tournament is fairly simple. It will follow the format that almost every competitive title out in eSports uses, the famous double elimination GSL format. These 16 teams will be separated into 4 groups, where the top half of each group advance to the upper bracket.
The lower half of each side will battle it out in the lower bracket. Each one that loses twice will be eliminated out of the tournament. All of the matches will be played in a best of 3 format except for the first match of the lower bracket which is a best of 1 and the Grand Finals which is a best of 5.
DreamLeague Season 11 Predictions
Now for the most exciting part, I will be predicting the top teams that will most likely advance to the later stages of the Dota 2 Dreamhack main event.
My first pick of all would be of no surprise if you have been following me. I have talked about this squad time and time again. The one I am referring to is none other than Virtus Pro. There are a lot of factors why I like this team a lot. First of all, they have been one of the most stable teams in all regions, only having one roster change in the past 3 years.
The core of this team is intact. It is due to the chemistry of the players between each other that they have been churning good results time and time again. Last year they were a dominating force in a lot of major tournaments. This year, they are a bit of a slow starter but they still managed to get on the Grand Finals of the first major of the year. They were also on the final four of the MDL Macau tournament, so those are nothing to scoff at.
The second one I have set my eyes on are Team Secret. They have won the first major of the year when they won Chongqing back in January, and what a better way for Team Secret to get a lead on points racking for The Internationals is if they manage to win again in this majors. This will grant them a lot of DPC points if they manage to do it.
They also dominated the matches during the qualifying for Dream League, only losing one game once in the entire qualifiers against Ninjas in Pyjamas. That and the recent performances they had in Chongqing and in Katowice, I see them steamrolling a lot of teams that might oppose them on their way to the top.
Next on my list is PSG LGD. They have been one of the more stands out Chinese teams we currently have. Sure we might be missing Somnus M from the roster, but I am fairly sure that they picked a good replacement in XM to fill the gap that Somnus left.
That and Ame is a beast of a position 1 carry player. If Ame manages to get his hands on a Juggernaut or an Anti Mage, then it will spell a lot of trouble for any opposition teams that will face them during the group stages or even in the brackets.
The last one that I think will take the top 4 places in this event would be Evil Geniuses. First of all, SumaiL is back from his vacation. Now that the EG lineup is back in full again, I think they might repeat what they did during Chongqing. And just so you know, Chongqing was not their only good result when 2019 hit. They also took second place in the MDL Macau event just last month.
They even eliminated Virtus Pro out of the event during the Lower bracket finals during Macau. Aside from that, they dominated the qualifiers for Dream League, even if there have been a lot of people and naysayers that are already counting them out prior to the event starting in Twitter and even in Twitch chat. Still, they have defied the odds.
This top 4 looks similar to the first Valve sponsored event that happened this 2019. The reason is that these top 4 teams have what it actually takes to dominate and close out matches on a consistent basis. Sure you can argue that every competitive team or organization out there can win against everybody, but these 4 squads I mentioned are cut from a different cloth. That is my opinion anyway, but you cannot argue the results that they have in the most recent tournaments that they have joined.
And last but not the least, we cannot end a prediction without picking out a dark horse that will most likely surprise everyone. I will be going with Fnatic here. The reason is fairly simple. They have been the most consistent South East Asian squad out there and probably the ones that have a lot of experience with their players coming from different teams in the past. Think of it this way, they are a supergroup.
They are somewhat similar to Team Secret, or OG in that respect. Aside from that, they actually managed to raise hell during the Chongqing Major and even came fourth in Katowice. Their group stage run during Katowice was only beaten out by Team Secret who finished 9-1 to their 8-2.
If somehow iceiceice manages to find consistency in the team fights that they initiate, I am fairly sure that they have the ability to oust one of the top 4 squads that I have chosen above and even land themselves in the Grand Finals.
This DreamLeague Season 11 is going to be very interesting to watch and hopefully, some bets will stimulate our interest as well! Good luck!