Is this finally the year PSG.LGD wins The International (TI11)?
PSG.LGD has been runner-up in five different Internationals, each rocking a different line-up altogether. Arguably one of the most consistent Dota 2 teams in history, yet, there’s still uncertainty that can ever win this The International (TI11) as they have always been so close, yet so far.
What’s been holding this team back all this years?
True Riyadh Masters Showcase
The Riyadh Masters 2022 victory was a pat on the back for PSG.LGD as they beat Team Spirit in the grand finals. The $1.5M reward is still a fraction of what they could have got if they won TI10, but it’s still good money, nonetheless.
They also beat team OG, which felt personal for fans and perhaps the team themselves. Of course, OG rocked a revamped roster, but they were the rising stars who won Stockholm Major 2022 while the former was stuck in Shanghai’s lockdowns. The win against OG served as bragging rights.
Now, it wouldn’t be fair not to credit OG as they did put up a fight against their rival. However, the third round’s draft was terrible, causing OG to crumble before they even started. Last-picking Phantom Assassin into LGD’s heavy magic damage line-up was optimistic but delusional as they expected PA to have a good game and quick BKB.
Nevertheless, it is LGD’s reliable draft that sets them apart from the new wunderkinds. And this early glimpse into PSG. LGD’s tip-top form is a terrifying fact going into the Arlington Major 2022.
Challengers for PSG.LGD at the International 11
It’s every team’s goal to win TI, but PSG.LGD probably want it the most. They were always one final short of winning the International and immortalizing their namesake as TI Champions. It isn’t even difficult to root for PSG.LGD after their promising showcase at Riyadh Masters 2022. Or rather, it’s reaffirming the fans that PSG.LGD hasn’t lost their shape after two DPC Tours without a non-Western opponent.
They got overwhelmed by their Chinese counterparts: RNG, Xtreme Gaming and Team Aster during Tour 3. But it wasn’t a cause for concern as it was the third and final tour, and after all, they already qualified for TI11 by securing enough DPC points on the team rankings.
TI11 is still anyone’s game to bag its million-dollar glory. OG line-up retired last season, yet, there was a new challenger, Team Spirit, which rocked the scene with their first TI debut and young team. And, as per past TI, there will always be a challenger that poses a new threat to LGD. It doesn’t necessarily have to be Team Spirit since we have many formidable teams emerging from other regions.
It is always the new team that causes mayhem for PSG.LGD.
Thunder Awaken has garnered quite the fanbase since they become a South American staple in DPC South America Tours. They were new blood with unfamiliar names that barely missed their shot at TI10, so TI11 will be a testing ground for them again. Other Western Europe candidates, such as Tundra Esports and Liquid, have also become exceptionally strong opponents themselves. And, let’s not miss out on Southeast Asia, which recently saw the rise of BOOM Esports as a titan crusher. BOOM may have had an unexpected upset at Stockholm but remained SEA’s strongest candidate.
The list of up and coming talent coming to steal that Aegis increases every year. In hindsight, Wang “Ame” Chunyu and his team are strong going into Arlington Major, ESL One Malaysia 2022, and ultimately the International 11.
As much as we want PSG.LGD to finally win TI, it will boil down to which team pulls off the greatest heist in terms of their plays. Well then, perhaps this might be the year when PSG.LGD breaks the runner-up curse that has befallen their name for the past five Internationals.