Prelude for a Champion: A TI Primer – LGD.Forever Young

LGD.Forever Young looking to push itself to top of Dota 2 world with new roster

 

With this year’s iteration of The International fast approaching, it seems appropriate to offer fans both new and old a breakdown of who it is they’re going to be watching in Seattle. This series of posts will each be dedicated to one of the 18 teams that will be participating in The International 2017, with the aim of giving readers a brief overview of the teams, their position coming into TI, and what their expectations might be. Please note that these posts will not contain a comprehensive history of the teams, nor will they go into minute detail for each of the players. There are more thorough breakdowns for teams and players available out there, a la SirActionSlacks’ “TI Down Low” series. These posts aim to provide something more akin to an “in a nutshell” level of information. Today we look at another of our Chinese Qualified teams, and one of the two squads playing for the LGD organizations – LGD.Forever Young

LGD is one of two Chinese organizations to field two teams at TI, though the nature of these squads is somewhat different. Whereas Invictus Gaming and Invictus Gaming.Vitality play the roles of “main” and “youth” squads, LGD’s two teams are more equal. LGD.Forever Young was formed as a secondary team for the LGD organization, mixing Chinese veterans and elder statesmen with young yet unproven talent, hence the team’s name. While those veteran players have since moved on, LGD.FY have managed to maintain a level of play and skill that keeps it within the upper echelon of Dota 2 teams.

LGD.FY is another of our TI teams to have made recent roster changes. In April, the team added support player “ddc”, and a month later added both “Inflame” and “Ahfu” to finalize the roster. It’s worth noting that neither of the two players are Chinese(technically). “Ahfu” is Malaysian and “ddc” is from the autonomous Chinese territory of Macau. As mentioned in a previous post, fielding non-Chinese players is a rarity among Chinese teams, so the fact that LGD.FY has made these roster changes shows a willingness to find success with strategies considered unconventional within the region.

The recent roster changes make it harder to pin down exactly where LGD.FY falls on the scale of talent among the TI participants. However, recent performances from the team give some indications of what the squad might be capable of, and from these results we can put LGD.FY’s TI expectations at a moderately high level. While the team is not likely being looked at as a large threat to win the Aegis of Champions, it should be able to find itself somewhere within the top half of the competitors with a significant degree of confidence. IF the team is as good as its recent results would suggest, and circumstances are kind, the LGD.FY could be in a position to make a deep run in Seattle.

LGD.FY’s recent results since the roster change are largely in Chinese regional qualifiers, but the results both in China and internationally are encouraging. The team placed 2nd at the Galaxy Battles and TI7 qualifiers, and won the Chinese qualifiers for both EPICENTER 2017 and MDL 2017. These latter two qualifier wins allowed the squad to participate in the subsequent tournaments. LGD.FY placed 3rd/4th at EPICENTER 2017, winning its group against Team Secret, Team Liquid, and OG before losing in the semifinals of the tournament. At MDL 2017 the team produced an even better result, posting a 4-3 group record before winning series against both Newbee and LGD to make it to the grand final. LGD.FY faced off against LGD again in a series that LGD.FY lost in 5 games to finish 2nd overall in the tournament. Though the squad lost this particular series, the team has been able to hold its own against the best team in the world. Against fellow TI participants, LGD.FY holds an 8-3 record in best-of-3 or higher series, and a 23-18 record overall since finalizing its new roster.

LGD.FY has been a relatively recent addition to the list of Dota 2’s strongest teams. Prior to the recent roster change, the squad has not experienced much major success, remaining largely confined to the Chinese region. However, with this newest iteration of the lineup, LGD.FY look like a strong team and a significant power that could have an impact at TI7. LGD.FY have a golden opportunity to make a statement at TI, and we will see if the team can take advantage of it, or if it’s fool’s gold that the Chinese squad is chasing in Seattle.

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