TI7 Group Stage Day 2 Recap

The International marches on with Day 2 now done and dusted in Seattle, and we’ll look to provide a brief recap of the day’s events and their repercussions. Again, this post will not cover every single match played in detail, but hopefully it can narrow things down to the essential information and some fun facts and stats. Here are the updated match tables and standings after 2 days of play at TI7.

Schedule and Standings

ti7_groupstage_a
Group A Matches – Day 2
ti7_groupstage_a_standings
Group A Standings – Day 2
ti7_groupstage_b
Group B Matches – Day 2
ti7_groupstage_b_standings
Group B Standings – Day 2

So let’s go over the day’s results and see where they leave us looking forward to Day 3. We will be using a similar format to the one used for the Day 1 Recap, splitting the information up into sections on today’s most notable teams, heroes, and trends.

Teams

The Standouts

Group A

Team Liquid – After a strong 5-1 performance on Day 1, Liquid had already placed itself into a favorable position as Day 2 began. While the team played fewer games on Day 2 than it had on Day 1, the European squad still managed to improve on its already comfortable position, winning 3 out of its 4 games to claim the top spot in Group A. Liquid focused on hard hitting lineups built for ganking and teamfighting on Day 2, with a large degree of success.

Liquid first went up against Infamous in a series heavily favored towards the European squad. In both matches, Liquid drafted lineups oriented towards farming and fighting as early as possible in an attempt to play aggressively and put Infamous off guard. These lineups performed perfectly for Liquid, resulting in back to back matches in which Infamous were unable to execute teamfights effectively and unable to prevent Liquid from establishing control of the map. Liquid again tried to focus on dominating teamfights against LGD Gaming, with mixed results. In game 1, LGD turned this strategy against Liquid, drafting a heavy fighting and farming trio that was able to control Liquid’s lineup and turn fights against them. LGD managed to separate and isolate Liquid’s heroes and bring them down repeatedly to hand Liquid its only loss of the day. In game 2, Liquid fired back and made a slight modification to its previous strategy, adding high levels of aggression and mobility to its lineup. The result was a level of early aggressive play that LGD wasn’t prepared for, leading into a powerful teamfight setup that Liquid was able to take advantage of time and time again.

Liquid has been on an absolute tear through the first two days of the Group Stage, and it doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon. Liquid continue to show that they are one of the strongest teams in the field in Seattle, and its would take a meltdown of legendary proportion to dislodge this squad from the top of the standings now.

Opponents: Infamous(2-0), LGD Gaming(1-1)

Record(Day; Tournament): 3-1; 8-2

Most Picked Hero(Day; Tournament): Io(3); Earthshaker(5)

Most Banned Hero(Day; Tournament): Night Stalker & Batrider(3); Night Stalker(7)

 

Invictus Gaming.Vitality – IG.V are currently sitting in the middle of the pack in the Group A standings at the end of Day 2. This may not seem particularly impressive, but considering where the Chinese squad began the day, this is quite the accomplishment. IG.V began Day 2 of the Group Stage with a 1-3 record in 8th place in the group. With just 4 games scheduled for Day 2, IG.V needed solid performances to pull itself out of the whole it had dug in Day 1. What IG.V pulled off in Day 2 was so much more than just “solid”, going 3-1 on the day against some of the tougher competitors in Group A. IG.V’s winning record in Day 2 places the squad in a tie for 5th place, just one spot out of the running for an Upper Bracket start to the Main Event.

IG.V faced off against LGD Gaming in its first series of they day. LGD had gone 6-0 on Day 1, and many believed that it would continue its undefeated streak facing off against IG.V. IG.V managed to pull off a stunning upset, defeating LGD in both games by utilizing a lineup built around heroes who could amass large levels of farm quickly and safely. In game 1, the squad rode a Sven and Mirana combo to a victory, managing to farm to a high enough level to overcome LGD’s impressive teamfight power. In game 2 IG.V were a bit faster to the punch, picking a trio of Timbersaw, Weaver, and Centaur Warrunner to dominate early fights, secure farm, and control the map. After beating the undefeated LGD, IG.V faced a test against another team that had gotten off to a poor start in the Group Stage: Team Secret. IG.V again went for a combination of farming, pushing, and teamfight power, but unfortunately went up against a Secret lineup even more adept at these points. Secret’s Drow Ranger strategy, centered around Drow Ranger herself and a Medusa core, out pushed and outfought IG.V from the start, forcing the Chinese squad to concede its first and only defeat of the day. IG.V turned things around in game 2, drafting a trio of Weaver, Doom, and Storm Spirit to fight against a hard farming and heavily gank oriented lineup from Team Secret. Though IG.V built a lead early thanks to the aggression of its cores, IG.V farming lineup eventually made an attempt to retake the momentum of the match. IG.V responded with smart fights and aggressive control of the map, pushing in and forcing Secret to defend its base and surrender its opportunities to initiate fights.

IG.V’s win tied the series at 1-1, lifting the squad to a 4-4 overall record. At the end of Day 2. As previously mentioned, this puts the squad just one spot away from the cutoff for the Upper Bracket of the Main Event. IG.V still has quite a few games left to play, but this encouraging performance against some of Group A’s stronger teams bodes well for IG.V’s chances of holding, or even improving, its current position.

Opponents: LGD Gaming(2-0), Team Secret(1-1)

Record(Day; Tournament): 3-1; 4-4

Most Picked Hero(Day; Tournament): 3 Heroes Tied(2); Shadow Shaman(5)

Most Banned Hero(Day; Tournament): Clockwerk(2); Io(4)

 

Group B

LGD.Forever Young – LGD.Forever Young are back on the list of standouts after Day 2. What could be impressive than going 4-0 on Day 1 you might ask? Going 6-0 on Day 2 to remain undefeated at a perfect 10-0 record through 2 days of competition in Seattle. LGD.FY are terrifying at this point, taking on any and every team that has the misfortune of standing in its way. LGD.FY are just about a lock for the Upper Bracket by this point, as it would take a combination of the team losing all of its remaining games and a series of impressive runs from several other members of the group to knock LGD.FY down from its pedestal.

LGD.FY began its day with a tough matchup against Virtus Pro, the 2nd place team in Group B coming into Day 2. LGD.FY continued to utilize its strategy from Day 1, drafting tanky, sustainable, and elusive damage dealers to fight the enemy early and often. Just as in Day 1, the strategy hit its mark, with VP never coming close to having enough damage to overcome the beefy lineups of LGD.FY. VP was quick to realize its mistake, losing game 1 and conceding in game 2 after just 15 minutes and 39 seconds. LGD.FY kept the ball rolling into its next matchup against IG, and again made use of tanky, elusive, or otherwise sustainable lineups en route to another 2-0 win. The team drafted a combination of heavy damage, high mobility, and mass healing that left IG with no answers and no chance of winning teamfights. As the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, and LGD.FY’s hard fighting strategy most certainly was not broken as the team entered its final series of Day 2 against Cloud 9. LGD.FY drafted lineups in both games that revolved around fighting and pushing early with Death Prophet to force Cloud 9 into a defensive posture that would limit its ability to farm and control the map. Cloud 9 put up a good fight, but couldn’t hold out in the end, bringing LGD.FY’s win total for Day 2 up to 6.

LGD.FY not only have the best record in its group, but also the best record among all of the teams at TI. This impressive performance in the first two days has given the squad breathing room at the top, but don’t expect the Chinese team to take the next 2 days lightly. LGD.FY have a chance to slam the door on its competition and lock up its spot at the top, and from what we’ve seen so far it has a better chance of doing so than anyone else in Seattle.

Opponents: Virtus.Pro(2-0), Invictus Gaming(2-0), Cloud 9(2-0)

Record(Day; Tournament): 6-0; 10-0

Most Picked Hero(Day; Tournament): Earthshaker(3); Earthshaker(4)

Most Banned Hero(Day; Tournament): Io(4); Io & Nyx Assassin(4)

 

The Letdowns

Most teams on Day 2 managed to either overperform or at least keep pace with the rest of the pack. Unfortunately, one team had a particularly bad day on Day 2, made even worse by its poor performance the day prior.

Group B

HellRaisers – HellRaisers did not have much fun on Day 2, winning just a single match to go 1-5 for the day. The good news is that the team got its first win of the Group Stage today, while the bad news is that the squad is now sitting at 1-7 and tied for last place in Group B.

HR came into Day 2 with a plan to fight as early and often as possible, utilizing a strategy that seemed somewhat familiar to that of 1st place and undefeated squad LGD.FY. Unfortunately for HellRaisers, a similar strategy did not yield similar results. HR began its day against SEA squad Execration, and in the early going it looked as though HR’s strategy might work out for them. The teamfight lineup from HR was matched by one from Execration, and the two squads were committed to duking it out till the end. The teams were trading fights back and forth, and unfortunately for HR, Execration was able to win that one last fight to tip things over the edge into its favor and win the game. HR was not discouraged by this first loss though, doubling down on the fighting focus in game 2. This time the team came through, drafting a lineup led by a Sven pick that simply overwhelmed the Execration heroes and netted HellRaisers its first win of the Group Stage. HR may have had hope that they had worked out the kinks in its strategy at this point, but this would prove to not be the case. OG faced off against HR next, and in both games HellRaisers found its strategy countered in different ways. In game 1, OG outperformed the squad in the late game, out farming HR’s solitary Shadow Fiend core. In game 2 OG struck hard in the early game, drafting around a Death Prophet that fought and pushed too hard for HR to compete with. HR still wouldn’t give up on its fighting strategy, and a final series against Digital Chaos would give the squad another chance to prove that its strategy could produce results. Digital Chaos were so inclined to cooperate though. In game 1, HR attempted to spread out its farm and power, drafting a trio of Ember Spirit, Legion Commander, and Troll Warlord to provide multiple sources of damage. DC wouldn’t give HR the chance to farm on all 3 of its cores, drafting a high magic damage based ganking lineup that rolled HR’s cores before they got the chance to build up to full strength. HR decided to try to flip the script in game 2, coming out aggressively themselves and trying to put DC on the back foot early. While this strategy was successful, HR had drafted gankers and pushers at the expense of teamfight potential, something that DC took advantage of. With a heavily teamfight oriented lineup with high amounts of control, DC was able to repeatedly defend its base from an HR lineup that didn’t quite have the strength to confidently attack uphill. As the game dragged on, HR found its lead slowly dissipating, and by the 1 hour mark in the game, DC was on the attack. HR’s lack of teamfight ability and failure to close out the game came back to haunt it, as DC snatched a victory away from the squad in a 63 minute long slugfest.

HR stuck to its guns on Day 2, but unfortunately came up firing blanks at its competition. The disastrous results in Seattle put HellRaisers is an extremely unfortable position going forward. HR isn’t out of it yet, but another day like Day 2 cannot happen if HR want to have any chance to surviving to the Main Event.

Opponents: Execration(1-1), OG(0-2), Digital Chaos(0-2)

Record(Day; Tournament): 1-5; 1-7

Most Picked Hero(Day; Tournament): Clockwerk(4); Clockwerk(4)

Most Banned Hero(Day; Tournament): 5 Heroes Tied(2); Earth Spirit & Puck(4)

 

Other Stuff

High Jumps: Invictus Gaming.Vitality(Group A, 8th → 5th)

Free Falls: Infamous(Group A, T-5th → T-7th), Team Empire(Group A, T-5th → T-7th)

Shortest Match of the Day: 15m:39s Virtus.Pro vs LGD.Forever Young(W)

Longest Match of the Day: 79m:16s TNC Pro Team vs Team Empire(W)

 

Heroes

In the Meta

Day 2 of the Group stage saw 8 heroes hold a combined pick and ban rate of 50% or higher for the day. Since some of these heroes are returning to this list from yesterday, we’ll cover the bare minimum stats for them.

Night Stalker – (13 picks, 31 bans) Night Stalker remained just as popular on Day 2 as he was one Day 1, picking up even more bans than before but dropping to an 80% pick/ban rate from Day 1’s 85%. More impressive than the increased ban count is the uptick in win rate from Night Stalker picks on Day 2, up to 61.54% from the 36.36% of Day 1. Night Stalker isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

Batrider – (16 picks, 26 bans) Batrider’s pick/ban rate took a miniscule dip in Day 2, dropping from 80% to 76.36%. Just like Night Stalker, Batrider saw a significant increase in both his ban count and his win rate. He pulled in 10 more bans than on Day 1, and won an even 50% of his matches on Day 2 compared to just 37.50% in Day 1. Batrider’s likely continue trending upwards as TI marches on.

Nyx Assassin – (12 picks, 30 bans) Nyx Assassin held steady on Day 2, increasing his pick/ban rate from 75% to 76.36%. Teams were not keen on dealing with the killer bug, as Nyx joined Batrider as another hero to receive 10 more bans on Day 2 than Day 1. Perhaps teams are right to get rid of the bug, as Nyx Assassin had an improved win rate of 83.33% in 12 matches on Day 2.

Puck – (15 picks, 24 bans) Puck’s pick/ban rate came in at 70.91% on Day 2, and the hero received both more picks and bans on the second day of competition. The increased usage didn’t do much for Puck’s win rate, as its remains at 40%. Not bad, but it could be higher.

Earthshaker – (23 picks, 11 bans) Earthshaker saw some more love on Day 2, reeling in 10 more picks than he received on Day 1 and posting a 61.82% pick/ban rate, just a hair under his Day 1 rate. The hero has been a solid gamble for most teams, holding a 52.17% win rate at the end of Day 2.

Lich – (15 picks, 15 bans) Lich is the first new face to grace the ranks of this list, as the ice man himself saw an uptick in usage across the board on Day 2. Lich had a combined pick/ban rate of 54.55% and pulled in a win in 53.33% of his matches. Teams are finding an abundance of ways to work Lich into strategies, and it doesn’t look like that will be changing in the immediate future.

Silencer – (14 picks, 15 bans) The second of our new faces on this list, Silencer found himself a much more desired commodity on Day 2 than he had seen in his meager role Day 1. Having a pick/ban rate of 52.73% would look encouraging for Silencer’s chances at first glance, but his usage rate was not reflected by the heroes efficiency or effectiveness. Silencer sets a new low for heroes on this list in terms of his win rate, finding victory in a paltry 28.57% of his matches on Day 2.

Sven – (10 picks, 18 bans) Sven just barely skirted the line to make it onto this list, with a pick/ban rate of 50.91% for Day 2. That percentage is more than likely about to increase dramatically going into Day 3, as Sven had a monstrous impact on the Day 2 matches. Appearing in 10 games, Sven won 9 of them for a whopping 90% win rate, the highest win rate so far of any hero to be included in this list. Sven is a powerful hero in the right hands, so expect that ban rate to increase as fewer teams feel inclined to take their chances against the Rogue Knight.

Other Stuff

Most Picked Hero(Day; Tournament): Earthshaker(23); Earthshaker(30)  

Most Banned Hero(Day; Tournament): Night Stalker(31); Night Stalker(48)

Efficiency Hero(Day; Tournament): Sven(90% Win Rate, 10 Games); Nyx Assassin(78.95% Win Rate, 19 Games)

Efficiency Zero(Day; Tournament): Legion Commander(15.38% Win Rate; 13 Games); Clockwerk(23.53% Win rate, 17 Games)

Unpicked Heroes: Abaddon, Arc Warden, Bane, Beastmaster, Chen, Clinkz, Gyrocopter, Huskar, Jakiro, Leshrac, Lion, Meepo, Pudge, Skywrath Mage, Spectre, Tiny, Underlord, Warlock, Windranger, Wraith King

Unbanned Heroes: Abaddon, Bane, Beastmaster, Crystal Maiden, Dazzle, Doom, Jakiro, Medusa, Mirana, Monkey King, Phoenix, Pudge, Riki, Shadow Demon, Skywrath Mage, Slardar, Slark, Spectre, Spirit Breaker, Tiny, Tusk, Underlord, Undying, Vengeful Spirit, Windranger, Wraith King

Unpicked & Unbanned Heroes: Abaddon, Bane, Beastmaster, Jakiro, Pudge, Skywrath Mage, Spectre, Tiny, Underlord, Windranger, Wraith King

 

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