Photo courtesy of OG via Twitter
The Dota 2 Pro Circuit kicks off 2019 with the Bucharest Minor, January 9-13. There will be eight teams competing for 500 Circuit points, $300,000 USD and an invitation to the Chongqing Major.
While there have been several tournaments over the last few weeks to keep Dota 2 fans entertained, nothing really compares to a Dota 2 Pro Circuit (DPC) event. If nothing else, each DPC event is another step toward The International 9, which is every professional player’s goal.
None of the Bucharest Minor teams have been sitting back and relaxing since qualifying for this tournament. They’re all hungry for wins, ready to compete at the Bucharest Minor and advance to the Chongqing Major. Only two of the eight teams have competed at a DPC event previously this season: Ninjas in Pyjamas (NiP) and Gambit Esports. NiP has been inconsistent over the last few weeks, struggling during the EPULZE Winter Masters and dropping to Gambit at the WePlay! Winter Madness tournament. Gambit won the latter event with two players on “loan”: Artiom “fng” Barschak and Alexander “Immersion” Hmelevskoy. Can Gambit carry that momentum forward to the Minor?
The Bucharest Minor features a group stage in which two groups will play a GSL-style bracket to determine seeding for the Playoffs. The bottom two teams in each group will go directly into the lower bracket of the Playoffs’ double elimination bracket, while the top two teams will go into the upper. All series will be best-of-threes until the Grand Finals which will be a best-of-five.
Group Stage Info
The groups were drawn this morning (January 8).
Group A will compete on day one (January 9), with Group B on day two (January 10).
Watch for the Winners matches in each group as those series should be strong indicators of the teams most likely to win the event.
Is there one stronger group than the other here? As mentioned above, all of the teams have been active since qualifying for this competition.
In Group A, Gambit Esports has had the most success, with Keen Gaming perhaps second best as they took first place in some Chinese region events. Filling out the group are NiP and the North American squad, TEAM TEAM.
In Group B, the headliners are OG. Their first DPC event after winning The International 8, and everyone wants to know whether they are going to roar into action the way Team Liquid did post-TI7 or whether they’ll limp into 2019 with more roster issues. They’ve already had to replace their replacement for position one player Anathan “ana” Pham. Tune in to see how the squad fares with stand-in Igor “iLTW” Filatov. Will they make his inclusion in the squad permanent?
Also look for EHOME. They’ve been strong in China lately, except when facing Vici Gaming. They could do very well in Bucharest, away from their regional rivals. Rounding out Group B are SEA roster BOOM ID and the South American team, Playmakers. The latter faced some difficulties in late November due to some roster woes. Hopefully they’ve bounced back and can put in a competitive showing in Bucharest.
The Bucharest Minor will play out in the PGL Studios in Bucharest, Romania. This means no live audience. Look to Jake “SirActionSlacks” Kanner and Lawrence “Malystrx” Phillips to fill time with plenty of pre-filmed content to get to know the teams better. Last year’s Bucharest Major produced some of the most memorable video content of the year, so the bar is set high!
You can catch all the action at https://www.twitch.tv/pgl_dota2. Come back daily for our coverage of all the action!
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