NA and CIS are definitely the weaker regions at TI 9, but what are their strengths?
TI9 starts in just a few days, and all teams are set to show their best. Having said that, regions in the DPC have as unbalanced as they are this season. Europe is clearly dominating with six EU teams going to TI 9. On the other hand, North America has one directly invited team. The CIS region is on par with NA with Virtus.Pro leading the pack.
Let’s take a quick look at the teams from both NA and CIS and put things in perspective.
NA TI 9 Teams
The Dota boys are off to Shanghai for their bootcamp before #TI9, so this will be our last Twitch highlights video for a bit!@GrandGrant and @Cr1tDota are the stars of this one. Watch 👉: https://t.co/9KUnKGAGwe pic.twitter.com/blhwmjBKpx
— Evil Geniuses (@EvilGeniuses) July 30, 2019
The only team that managed to snag a direct invite to TI 9 is Evil Geniuses. The boys in blue had a very strong DPC season, despite the fact that they failed to take home first place in any event that they competed in. That said, they’ve always managed to secure themselves a top finish, helping them collect the needed points to get to Shanghai.
Evil Geniuses is a very stable team when it comes down to the results. Despite that, it always seems like they are just lacking some sort of punch to propel them from "consistent" to "winners." Of course, it's possible that they've been hiding their top tactics prior to TI, so the first few days are going to make or break this team. Unlike in previous years, this TI is in China. EG won't have the home crowd advantage that they're used to.
NewBee (ex Forward Gaming)
Finally, the dust settled after the big controversy around NewBee’s decision to bring Forward Gaming under their banner. Yawar "YawaR" Hassan and his teammates have proven that they definitely have what it takes to face down even the biggest names in Dota 2. This is only possible, of course, if they utilize the full potential of their lineup. While they definitely have the players to do it, they'll have to show fans how they perform in actual competition under the NewBee name. In our humble opinion, they could be one of the hidden favorites for this years’ TI crown.
CIS TI9 Teams
There has never been a team as dominant as Virtus.Pro in the CIS region. In fact, some could make the argument that they're one of the most storied teams in Dota 2 history. Gambit used to be a contender for this title, but after their most recent results, they are most certainly not.
Analysts always considered Roman "RAMZES666" Kushnarev and his fellas to be a favorite in any tournament that they attend. No wonder they were the first team that managed to secure a direct invitation to China. That said, VP has a very bad habit of throwing unnecessary games. Hopefully, fans won’t see this again this year. After all, a team of their caliber deserves to have at least one TI trophy, but it's all up to them.
— Natus Vincere (@natusvincere) August 4, 2019
The last team on this list is the legendary Na’Vi. Of course, their current squad has absolutely nothing to do with the one which won TI 1 all the way back in 2011. In fact, Na`Vi lacks even a single player from the era, including the legendary mid player, Dendi.
Na’Vi has had a very bad DPC season, quite frankly, dealing with crisis after crisis for some time now. After failing to qualify for nearly every big tournament this DPC season, they mainly focused on various tier two events. Fortunately for Na`Vi, they pulled out a miracle during the CIS qualifiers, managing to secure a spot for TI 9.
Now, it’s up to Akbar "SoNNeikO" Butaev and his teammates to prove that their spot here was not a fluke.
Image VIA: Evil Geniuses