Image courtesy of EPICENTER
LGD Gaming sent the undefeated top contenders of the event, Team Liquid, to the lower bracket in a fantastic series, advancing to their fourth LAN grand finals of the season.
Chinese teams have had a history of placing second in this season of the Dota Pro Circuit, with Vici Gaming getting four second-place finishes and VGJ.Thunder getting three. Newbee is an exception, although their victories this season have only been two Minors and a lackluster season otherwise. After their recent partnership with Paris Saint-Germain Football Club, PSG.LGD is looking stronger than ever. Securing their fourth spot at the grand finals of a DPC event, they have not only climbed up the ranks but also pose a serious threat to whoever their opponents will be from the lower bracket. After defeating, arguably, the strongest team of the event, Team Liquid, the question remains whether they will falter once again in the grand finals or beat the odds and come out as victors.
Liquid opened up their draft with a first pick Morphling for Amer “Miracle-” Al-Barkawi, sending the panelists into doubt. Although they paired it up with its direct counter, Ancient Apparition, it allowed LGD to adjust their core picks. The mid-lane Storm Spirit was perfect for Lu “Somnus丶M” Yao, so was the Lycan for Wang “Ame” Chunyu, who ratted his way to mega creeps with his massive, natural pushing capability. Liquid did not give up, and despite being far behind in net-worth, they held on against the onslaught of the powerful creep-waves, but ultimately succumbed to Shadow Shaman’s Mass Serpent Wards.
Liquid decided to try something new in the hopes that they would surprise LGD and take them off their guard. With a fourth pick Enigma in the hands of Ivan Borislavov “MinD_ContRoL” Ivanov, they hoped to win every team-fight that came their way. Despite the fact that LGD had no hard counters for the hero, they managed to gank him multiple times, delaying his BKB timing quite significantly.
With multiple silences coming from the Queen of Pain and Skywrath Mage, the Enigma barely managed to get off a good, full-duration Black Hole. And even when he did, Liquid rarely had a good follow-up for it. Down one lane of barracks, they showed signs of life when LGD tried to take a second lane where they wiped them out. However, they could only destroy two tier-three towers in exchange. Not long after, Wang “Ame” Chunyu’s Slark sealed the deal on Liquid’s fate, as his Nullifier purchase lived up to its name, and nullified any impact the Enigma could have on the game.
The lower bracket finals between Team Liquid and FlyToMoon will kick off the last day of the event at 13:00 local time (12:00 CEST), followed by the grand finals at 14:30 local time (13:30 CEST).