Team Liquid was successful in the first tournament of the season under version 7.07.
In the past, the Chinese pro Dota teams were considered the fastest when it comes to adapting to new patches. As the most recent example, during the advent of version 7.00 last year, the top two teams to finish in World Cyber Arena 2016 were iG.V and Vici Gaming. It was the first Premier Tournament to play under 7.00. A few weeks later, in Genting, the only two Chinese teams in the ESL ONE tournament had a podium finish, with Wings Gaming ending in joint 3rd-4th while Newbee finished in second place.
This weekend’s AMD SAPPHIRE Dota PIT League almost had the similar results, with both Newbee and VG reaching the Semi-finals. Unfortunately, Team Liquid was waiting for both teams in the Finals.
People would remember how another Chinese team had sent Team Liquid to the lower bracket early on in TI7, pushing the eventual champions against the wall. However, Team Liquid’s resilience proved to be all they needed to be able to bounce back up to the Finals of the International. Towards the finals, they faced three Chinese teams consecutively: LGD, LFY and Newbee. Despite all the odds, Team Liquid was able to adapt to the situation and emerge victorious.
Funnily, there was no shortage of Asian teams taking up the challenge of toppling the TI champions in Dota Pit. In the first round, Immortals had the misfortune of facing Team Liquid early. Team Liquid beat Immortals 2-0, and did the same for Newbee and Vici Gaming, who they faced in the next two rounds of the tournament.
With both teams defeated by Team Liquid, Newbee and VG faced each other in the Lower Bracket Finals in a fierce competition, ending with VG scoring 2-1 over Newbee. Fresh from their defeat in the Upper Bracket Finals, VG sought out revenge against Team Liquid.
For a short while, it seemed as if VG would exact vengeance on Team Liquid, scoring 2-0 against them. Usually, fans would believe all is lost, and many would just want the series to end already so that they could finally go to sleep. Team Liquid, thankfully, made their reverse sweep quick. Like a viper strike that comes without notice, Liquid struck and fell VG around 25 minutes of their last three games in the Finals. Some fans might fancy that SKT’s famed reverse-sweeping skills had passed on to Liquid after their loss to Samsung Galaxy at Worlds last Sunday, but I digress.
Team Liquid’s grace under pressure have once again shined in Dota PIT. Although their Cinderella run in TI7 was more dramatic, their showing this weekend was nonetheless a testament to their resilience and ability to adapt to the situation. Going up from a 2-0 for a reverse sweep was nothing short of impressive.
Neutral has been playing video games since he was a little kid. He started being competitive when he and his brother would bet favors for each other depending on who wins at the PS2 game Naruto Shippuuden. Recently he has been playing Dota2 and Animal Crossing on his revived 3DS. It is his dream to be part of the formation of the eSports version of UAAP through UP Gaming Guild’s Impetus 2017.
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