The 8 teams that will fight for the first Minor Championships of the season have been decided as the Dota 2 world will turn its eyes to Stockholm in October.
After the conclusion of the regional qualifiers for The Kuala Lumpur Major were concluded around a week ago, 15 of the 16 teams in the field were set. However, the final slot for that Major has yet to be decided, as the spot is reserved for the team that claims the first title of the Pro Circuit season with a victory at the DreamLeague Season 10 Minor in Stockholm. Today, we know the identities of the teams that will be fighting both for that title of Minor Champion and for the final spot in Kuala Lumpur, as the regional qualifiers for the Minor have come to an end. 2 squads from both Europe and North America will join the single representatives from China, Southeast Asia, CIS, and South America to comprise the field of teams at the first Minor of the Pro Circuit season, but only 1 of them will emerge victorious and claim their place in the field for the subsequent Major. With that in mind, we can take a brief look at the 8 squads that fought their way through the regional qualifiers and are locked in to spots at the DreamLeague Season 10 Minor. This post will be short and relatively lacking in terms of in-depth information, as a more thorough preview of the participants will be put out closer to the actual start date of the Minor.
Region: North America (North America Qualifier 1st place)
Rolen Andrei Gabriel “Skemberlu” Ong
Linus “Limmp” Blomdin
Jingjun “Sneyking” Wu
Zakari “Zfreek” Freedman
Jacky “EternaLEnVy” Mao
compLexity Gaming make their way to the team’s first Pro Circuit event after an impressive showing in the regional qualifier. However, there is one significant concern for the team heading into this event in that its Carry player has yet to play an official match with the team. Skemberlu is listed as the team’s Carry on its official roster registration, but in both the team’s regional qualifier runs to this point he has not been playing with the team. In his place, compLexity Gaming has used a duo of stand-ins, which raises some questions as to whether or not the team will be able to maintain its current level of play once Skemberlu is fully in the lineup.
Region: North America (North America Qualifier 2nd place)
Brian “BananaSlamJamma” Canavan
From the ashes of the former Black Sheep squad rises a new potential power in the North American region, as ROOONS has come out on top of its regional rivals and claimed a place in Stockholm for the first Minor of the Pro Circuit season. The squad’s path to the Minor was not easy, as the team was beaten down by fellow Minor attendee compLexity Gaming 1 of its series and needed 2 incredible comeback performances in its last series of the qualifier to even reach this point. No matter how hard the path was though, ROOONS has walked it successfully, and the team’s guaranteed Qualifying Point earnings from this Minor will help establish it as one of the leading teams within the North American region at this early point in the Pro Circuit season. Whether the team actually manages to be a true contender for the title of Minor Champion in Stockholm is somewhat less clear at the moment, but the potential is there for this squad to compete if it can maintain or raise the level of play that we saw from it in this Minor Qualifier.
Region: South America (South America Qualifier Winner)
Enzo “Timado” Gianoli
Mariano “Papita” Caneda
Adrian“Wisper” Cespedes Dobles
Farith “Matthew” Puente
Joel “MoOz” Mori Ozambela
Following an encouraging but ultimately unsuccessful run in the Major Qualifier, Infamous came into the Minor Qualifier as a team looking fairly confident in itself as it looked to secure a place in Stockholm with a combination of veteran experience and young talent. That combination appears to have paid off now, as Infamous managed to overcome all of its regional rivals in the Minor Qualifier to lay claim to the South American slot at the DreamLeague Season 10 Minor. The team looked incredibly impressive in its qualifier run, with recent roster addition and Offlaner Wisper looking particularly with some of his best showings of the young season so far. With his emergent talent alongside the experience of Carry/Mid duo Timado and Papita, this Infamous roster is looking like a potential threat for any of the other teams in the field for this Minor. Infamous likely won’t be entering this event in October as a favorite to find success, but success is certainly a possibility for this squad should it manage to continue playing at the level we just saw in its qualifier run.
The Final Tribe
Region: Europe (Europe Qualifier Winner)
Pontus “Frost” Frost
Rasmus “Chessie” Blomdin
Jonas “jonassomfan” Lindholm
Simon “Handsken” Haag
Adrian “Era” Kryeziu
The Final Tribe put together a somewhat disappointing showing in the Major Qualifier, but appears to have righted the ship now with an absolutely dominant showing in the qualifier for the DreamLeague Season 10 Minor. The team’s core trio now appears to be on the same page, and will likely present an incredibly dangerous front for any team in the field in Stockholm to deal with. Meanwhile, Era looks to have adjusted a bit more to his role as the team’s Support Player, as he and Handsken racked up Assists in this qualifier and set up the team’s cores to success early and often. If The Final Tribe can maintain this level of play on the Minor stage in Stockholm, then it will be one of the more formidable squads in the field and likely one of the favored teams to claim the first Minor Championship of the season.
Region: Europe (Europe Qualifier 2nd place)
Lasse Aukusti “MATUMBAMAN” Urpalainen
Amer “Miracle-” Al-Barkawi
Ivan “MinD_ContRoL” Ivanov
Maroun “GH” Merhej
Kuro “KuroKy” Salehi Takhasomi
After a less than ideal performance in the Major Qualifier, TI7 Champion Team Liquid appears to have righted the ship with its successful run through the Minor Qualifiers. Of course, the fact that the team played with a stand-in during this last qualifier run means that the possibility of future issues hasn’t completely gone away, but a team with Team Liquid’s history of success has earned itself the benefit of the doubt, especially this early in the Pro Circuit season. The team will almost assuredly make its way to Stockholm as a favorite to claim the title of Minor Champion, perhaps based off of its previous success in nothing else. However, the field of teams for this Minor is full of quite a few talented and experienced squads, all of whom would love to begin their Pro Circuit season with a notable victory over a TI Champion and regional powerhouse like Team Liquid. We shall see if the team is ready to take on those challengers as Team Liquid looks for its 4th Minor Championship on the Pro Circuit.
Region: CIS (CIS Qualifier Winner)
Vladislav “Crystallize” Krystanek
Idan MagicaL Vardanyan
Evgeniy “Blizzy” Ree
Evgeniy “Chuvash” Makarov
Akbar “SoNNeikO” Butaev
After an offseason that saw it commit to a massive overhaul of its roster, legendary esports organization Na’Vi appears to be off to a strong start to this new Pro Circuit season. The squad bounced back from a disappointing 7th-8th place finish in the Major Qualifier and put together an incredibly impressive performance in the reduced field of the DreamLeague Season 10 Minor CIS Qualifier. Na’Vi swept past its opposition in this qualifier, losing only a single game as it won 3 straight series to lock down its place in Stockholm. The team’s core trio of Crystallize, MagicaL, and Blizzy are picking up the slack for this team in a huge way, turning in strong performances in this qualifier that left the team’s opponents scrambling for answers. With that talented trio leading the charge for the team, and experienced captain SoNNeikO in the captain’s chair, this new Na’Vi roster is looking solid at this early stage in the season and could potentially emerge as a leader in the CIS region if it can remain consistent in its level of play moving forward.
Royal Never Give Up
Region: China (China Qualifier Winner)
Du “Monet” Peng
Sun “Srf” Runfa
Tue “ah fu” Soon Chuan
Adam “343” a.k.a. “Adam” Shah
Tang “xy” Weijie (Substitute)
Tong “Mikasa” Junjie (Coach)
The hype around the formation of this Royal Never Give Up roster was significantly high during the offseaon, but the team’s initial performance in the Major Qualifier left much to be desired. The team had a chance at redemption in this Minor Qualifier, and Royal Never Give Up made sure that it took advantage of that second opportunity and put together an impressive showing against its regional rivals. While the team did manage to earn its place in Stockholm for this Minor, there is now a bit of a question for the team regarding its roster moving forward. With Setsu at the Midlaner position, the team struggled in the Major Qualifier, but with xy at the position, Royal Never Give Up was able to out play its opponents and claim the Chinese region’s sole spot at this Minor. Of course, that doesn’t necessarily take into account the fact that the top 3 teams from the Major Qualifier did not participate in the Minor Qualifier, which makes it even harder to judge the teams performance across the 2 qualifiers and with its 2 different lineups. We shall see which iteration of its roster the team feels more comfortable and confident with moving forward as the team prepares to make its Pro Circuit debut in Stockholm at the end of October.
Region: Southeast Asia (Southeast Asia Qualifier Winner)
Lai “Ahjit” Jay Son
Muhammad “inYourdreaM” Rizky
David “MoonMeander” Tan
Kenny “Xepher” Deo
Sivatheeban “1437” Sivanathapillai
Tigers have found redemption early in the season, as the squad has earned itself a place in Stockholm for the first Minor of the season after a disappointing 7th-8th place showing in the qualifier for The Kuala Lumpur Major. The team’s impressive run in this Minor Qualifier showed us the talent and power that we had been expecting to see from Tigers since the moment its new roster had been announced in the offseason. While the squad did well in securing its place in this first Pro Circuit event of the season, the rather glaring disparity between its performances in the 2 qualifiers does raise a few concerns for the team. Heading into this Minor, we won’t necessarily be sure which version of the team we will see; the one that tore its way through this Minor qualifier or the one that under performed and bombed out of the Major qualifier. We will see if the squad can put together any performances in third party events or leagues that could serve to boost the confidence levels prior to the start of the Minor at the end of October.