The Biggest Stories From The International 2017 Part 1

by Sherman Kim
on August 29, 2017

The TLDR of TI7: You are facing Team Liquid. You lose.

If you were unable to watch the 2 week long, 10-hour a day, epic event, we wrote about the most important stories from TI7.

Team Liquid are Your Champions

Congratulations to Team Liquid for winning it all at TI7! They ran through 6(!) different teams on their way to the championship.

They lost their first series in the main event after Invictus Gaming upset them. After that, they beat Team Secret, Team Empire, Virtus Pro, LGD Gaming, LGD Forever Young and Newbee to take the victory. What a fantastic run by the best team in Dota.

Team Liquid maintained history by not allowing the three other Chinese teams in the top 4 to win a TI in an odd year.

Team Liquid had the longest path to their TI championship in the tournament’s history. No other TI winner had to win as many series as Team Liquid did at TI7. Team Liquid was also the first team to win 3-0 in the grand finals.

Kuroky: The Best Captain

Kuroky has found vindication. He finally has his own TI championship after participating in every single TI before. He has shown the world that his level of captaining is unmatched, and he even won the all-star game where he went against Solo of Virtus Pro. Kuroky is a legend in the Dota world. Now, he’s immortalized in the 2017 Aegis as the captain of Team Liquid.

Miracle: The Best Player

Miracle validated himself as the best player in the world. The Sumails and Maybes of Dota belonged in this discussion before TI7. Now, I declare Miracle as the best player in Dota after his dominant performance throughout the tournament.

Miracle played 21 different heroes—more than any other player in this tournament. No matter who he played, Miracle always found himself at the top of the net worth charts. His versatility on so many different heroes gave his captain many drafting options.

Dota is a team game, but you always need your carry to come through with the farm and deliver the finishing blow. Miracle was that player for Team Liquid. His team provided the space for farm, and as the game went on, Miracle emerged from the jungle ready to rumble—and rumble he did. Miracle ran through China in the final 4 series like he was a man among boys. Consistently showing up and playing well, Miracle was the miracle Team Liquid needed to win it all.

GH: The Rookie Of The Year

GH emerged as the rookie of the year in the Dota world. Playing in his first TI ever, GH was one of the best player in this tournament. The current game meta relies heavily on roaming supports to make an impact in the laning stage so the team can transition well into the mid game. GH was by far the most impactful roaming support throughout this tournament, which contributed to Team Liquid winning it all.

He out-played amazing veteran supports like Jerax, Ah Fu, Kaka and everyone else. GH also has three almost instant-win heroes in EarthShaker, IO and Keeper of the Light. This made enemy teams first phase ban two out of the three GH heroes, which gave a significant drafting advantage for Kuroky.

Mind_Control: The Best Offlaner

Who would have thought Mind_Control would be on the list of the world’s best offlaners at the end of TI7? Universe, Faith_bian, S4 and Mind_Control! This Bulgarian monster played out of his mind this tournament. His Nature’s Prophet play blew my mind. Killing couriers multiple times in a single game, nearly every game he played was really impressive. His rotations, ganks, laning phase and overall game play was game-winning. Acting as a core in the off lane, Mind_Control found himself at the top of the net worth charts often.

This man deserves more praise as a top talent in the Dota world, and after this tournament, he is surely going to receive that praise.

Matumbaman: The World Champion

There has been a screen shot from three years ago circulating the Dota forums of a player looking for a team to play with. That player was Matumbaman, and today, three years after that post, he has reached the pinnacle of the Dota world. Truly an inspiration for everyone.

This meta has a core player acting as a sacrificial lamb for the rest of the team to win. Matumbaman was unfortunately this sacrifice, but he made it work. Always coming clutch with the Necrophos Reaper’s Scythe, or joining the fight with a Venomancer Poison Nova, it didn’t matter if Matumabaman was ignored for most of the game—he always came through when his team needed him the most.

I don’t think Matumbaman had a chance to fully showcase his skills as the team revolved around Miracle and GH, but Matumbaman is a world champion, and no one can take that away from him.

Congratulations to Team Liquid for winning the grand prize of $10.9 million dollars. Team Liquid now boasts 5 of the top 9 most paid esports winners in esports history. Kuroky is 1st, Miracle 2nd, Matumbaman 4th, Mind_Control 5th and GH 9th.

Resolution: The Killer

One of the stand-out performers of TI7 was Resolution. This Ukrainian star single-handedly eliminated fan favorites without mercy. Watching Resolution take out top teams was like watching an elite mercenary assassin at his peak.

Cloud 9 was the first victim. North American fan favorites Eternal Envy, PieLieDie, Fata, Aui_2000 and MSS were ruthlessly slaughtered in a best of one series. Eternal Envy tried his hardest to claw his way to victory, but Resolution didn’t care. Resolution only knows murder, and over an hour of murder, domination is what happened.

Next up was the hometown team, Evil Geniuses. Team Empire threw them out of the tournament with no regard for human life. Resolution played Sven two games in a row, and that’s all it took for Team Empire to win 2-0. It was a David VS Goliath match where Team Empire was David and Evil Geniuses was Goliath. The truth is though, Resolution is Goliath, and he stomped all over Evil Geniuses, the lesser Goliath.

The cherry on top of Resolution’s run was that he wasn’t even supposed to be there. Resolution was with Planet Odd, who did not qualify for TI7. He was a stand-in for Team Empire who he has played with in the past. Their carry could not make it to TI7 due to visa reasons. In the end, Team Empire placed higher than Evil Geniuses, Team Secret and more, all thanks to Resolution.

China, CIS and South America are the Regional Winners This Tournament

China

Even though a European team won it all, TI7’s regional winners were China and CIS. China had three teams in the top four, and looked absolutely dominant compared to the rest of the world. Each region’s best team could not match up against China’s multiple contenders.

LFY looked scary going 14-2 in the group stage and making it to the lower bracket finals before losing to Team Liquid 2-1.

Everyone always knew Newbee was a good team, but no one expected them to make it all the way to 2nd place at TI7 (which somehow seemed like a disappointment), beating Evil Geniuses, Invictus Gaming and LFY on the way to the grand finals.

LGD brought the heat once again playing very well. They eliminated OG, Invictus Gaming and Digital Chaos after being knocked down to the lower bracket by Virtus Pro. They made it to the top four before losing to the eventual champions, Team Liquid.

Invictus Gaming is the only team in the entire tournament to beat Team Liquid in the main event. With a shocking 2-1 upset over Team Liquid in the first series of the main event, Invictus Gaming looked like they came to win it all. Unfortunately for them, they got knocked out by LGD for a respectable 5-6th.

CIS

The CIS region only had two teams representing them at TI7, but what a show out by the Russians/Ukrainians. Virtus Pro and Team Empire played extremely well, and showed the world that the CIS region is still alive and competing.

Team Empire and their stand-in, stand out Resolution made it 7th-8th in the tournament, eliminating Cloud 9 and Evil Geniuses along the way. They placed higher than Team Secret, Evil Geniuses, TNC Pro Team, Digital Chaos and tied with OG. Some analysts thought they wouldn’t even make it out the group stage, let alone eliminate North American powerhouses. They all forgot about Resolution and his carry skills, which stood out as a top moment at TI7.

to win it all, and in this regard, their run was a disappointment. As talented as any team in this tournament, they placed 5th-6th after losing to Team Liquid in an epic series. VP is apparently happy with their placement, with news coming out that they will be remaining together for the upcoming season.

South America

South America has made it to TI! Team Infamous featuring Timado, Benjaz, Kingteka, Matthew and Accel are the first representatives from this continent. Look for this region to trend upwards in the Dota world.

The Loser Regions: North America, South East Asia

North America and South East Asia entered TI7 as the most hyped regions in the world, and none of the teams placed higher than 9th-12th.

Valve even allowed three teams from South East Asia (SEA) to make it, tied with China as the region with the most qualifiers. Fnatic didn’t make it out of the group stage, Execration was eliminated on the first day, and TNC Pro Team went 0-4 in the main event before getting eliminated.

North America’s top teams Evil Geniuses, Digital Chaos and Cloud 9 also had disappointing performances. Evil Geniuses went 0-4 in the main event, and were the most disappointing team of TI7 after getting eliminated by Team Empire, a team they are much better than. Digital Chaos was the longest lasting NA team, but still placed 9th-12th. Cloud 9 was the 2nd most disappointing team after having a brutal group stage before getting eliminated by Team Empire.

NA and SEA have to thank Europe for not allowing China to steamroll through every region at the biggest Dota tournament of the year.

As a NA fan, I wonder what kind of team the region can put together for me to start cheering for.

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