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Captains Draft is a unique DotA 2 tournament that follows the Captains Draft game mode instead of the usual Captains Mode.
In this mode, teams will choose from a limited pool of 9 random heroes for each of the three main attributes for a total of 27. The teams will then go on to ban three heroes each. Afterwards, they will draft their lineups based on the heroes remaining in the pool.
Captains Draft first kicked off in 2014 where Fnatic took down NaVi in the Grand Finals 3-1 to claim the title. Team Secret went on to win the tournament back in 2015, followed by Evil Geniuses in 2016.
The latest Captains Draft tournament will hold more weight than ever before. Not only will it feature the biggest prize pool in the tournament’s history at $300,000, but also 300 Qualifying Points will be at stake.
The Captains Draft 4.0 is the fourth installment of the Captains Draft tournament series by DotaCinema and MoonduckTV. Two invited teams, Evil Geniuses and Team Secret, will be joined by the winners of the six regional qualifiers.
The LAN Finals of the Captains Draft Minor will take place on January 4-7, 2018, in Washington, D.C.
This Chinese squad went into the current season with all eyes on them after placing second at The International 7. Under the banner of the TI4-winning squad, Newbee went through the 2016-17 season. In September of 2016 with their current roster, they put out mixed but certainly not weak results. After the massive annual event, while most teams often choose to shuffle, Newbee was one of the few tier-one rosters that chose to stay put into this new season.
Whether or not it will pay off is yet to be seen as they’ve placed no higher than third at every event they’ve been to. On the big stage, they’ve played relatively safe drafts, a difficult bet in an aggressive Meta. Still, their multi-event LAN grind has rewarded them well, as their ESL One Hamburg victory gave them a Major-sized lump of qualifying points. They currently stand at 5th place in the race of TI8 qualification.
After more than a year of hardship and relegation in the club side teams of the Chinese scene, Vici Gaming seems to be definitely back. During the first six months of 2017, VG was deprived of its historic captain Xu “fy” Linsen. Neither the addition of prestigious players like Chen “Hao” Zhihao or Wong “ChuaN” Hock Chuan, nor the arrival of Zhang “LaNm” Zhicheng as coach changed anything. The team ultimately missed The International 7.
In the post-TI7 period, almost everything has been turned upside down. Of the five players before TI, only one remained: Zeng “Ori” Jiaoyang. He happens to be a mid-season newcomer to the competitive circuit since he started with DUOBAO, his first team, in 2016. VG recruited him in January, 2017. For the rest, Vici bet on more well-known players: LaNm left the coaching position, while Tong “Mikasa” Junjie took over his post; Lu “Fenrir” Chao completed the duo of supports. Ren “eLeVeN” Yangwei was taken from LGD while Zhang “Paparazi灬” Chengjun, from iG Vitality, helped to recover a fairly young cores duo.
The first qualifiers were not impressive: VG missed the PGL Open Bucharest and the ESL One Hamburg. But then the horizon has cleared up. Vici Gaming has managed to qualify for three major tournaments and three Minors (StarLadder i-League Invitational, DotA Pit League, and Perfect World Masters).
Newbee will surely have a revenge victory on their mind after recently losing to Vici Gaming in the semifinal of DotA Pit.
It’s a huge fall for LFY to go from legitimate TI contenders to failing to qualify for a Pro Circuit LAN despite playing with the same five-man lineup. Still, you can’t just count them out yet, and with LFY earning a free pass to the Perfect World Masters Minor, we should expect a rebound performance from Leong “ddc” Fat-meng and co.
LFY only has three LAN appearances this season. This is not what you’d expect from the team who finished in the Top 4 in TI7. Especially not considering that two of their upcoming LAN appearances came via direct invite.
With qualifier tournaments for the first two months of the Pro Circuit already over, LFY has a lot of ground to cover if they plan on racking up qualifying points early for The International 2018.
The first thing to mention is Bai “rOtK” Fan, as he stepped back to see the team more clearly. Moving from the player position to coach for the team, in this role rOtK is God-tier. The next big change is the return of Liu “Sylar” Jiajun’s “Husky” for the carry role. Zhou “Yang” Haiyang’s offlane support pair is pushed from VG.P with Fan “Ayo” Tianyou and Pan “Fade” Yi . This lineup is clearly not as prominent as it was before, but with rOtK as coach, anything can happen.
At the same time, VG.J’s boss Jeremy Lin made an important change when investing in a North American team with Ritsu, 747. The Chinese team was named as VG.J Thunder while North America is VG. .J Storm. This aggressive investment demonstrates that VG should be a huge success in the coming season.
They have finished in 6th place at PGL Open Bucharest but may not be victorious against a struggling LFY.
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