Hosting 8 teams with 300 DPC points up for grabs, the tournament falls under the shadow of the larger Dota 2 Asia Championships. That means many of the major contenders in the international circuit have chosen to rest, leaving Dreamleague: Season 9 open for a mostly disparate set of teams to compete. Team Secret and Newbee strike out as the major aspirants in the race. A weakened Team Liquid, and OG, as well as Fnatic, comes under the next tier of competitors who also will be competing at this event. At the periphery of this competition lie Team Empire, paiN Gaming, and Immortals.
Most of these teams do not represent the finest of their regions. Dreamleague Season 9 stands as a massive opportunity for teams who haven't really been shining. Will Team Secret and Newbee stand tall above the competition, or will we see the underdogs bite back?
The tournament has no-nonsense Double elimination bracket right up at the start. The Double elimination playoff bracket is seeded according to each team’s position on the DPC points table.
Things get started on Wednesday (March 21) with four quarterfinal matches. The double elimination bracket runs through March 25, and you can catch it all on Dreamleague’s Twitch Channel. All matches are BO3 series, except for the Grand Finals which will be a BO5 series.
Day 1: March 21, 2018
|OG vs Fnatic||05:30 PM||03:00 PM|
|Newbee vs Immortals||08:30 PM||06:00 PM|
|Team Secret vs Empire||11:30 PM||09:00 PM|
|Team Liquid vs paiN Gaming||02:30 AM||12:00 AM|
Day 2: March 22, 2018
|Lower Bracket Round 1 – A||05:30 PM||03:00 PM|
|Lower Bracket Round 1 – B||08:30 PM||06:00 PM|
|Semi Final 1||11:30 PM||09:00 PM|
|Semi Final 2||02:30 AM||12:00 AM|
Day 3: March 23, 2018
|Lower Bracker Quarter Finals – A||08:30 PM||06:00 PM|
|Lower Bracker Quarter Finals – B||11:30 PM||09:00 PM|
|Winner Bracket Finals||02:30 AM||12:00 AM|
Day 4: March 24, 2018
|Lower Bracket Semi-finals||08:30 PM||06:00 PM|
|Lower Bracket Finals||11:30 PM||09:00 PM|
Day 5: March 25, 2018
|Grand Finals||11:30 PM||12:00 AM|
Can Fnatic capitalize by pouncing on the weakened Giants?
Image Credits: Team Secret
Both Team Liquid and OG come into the Dota 2 Minor with weakened lineups. Team Liquid will be without their star 1-Position player Amer “Miracle” Al Barkawi as he has opted to take a break from this event for personal reasons. OG, on the other hand parted ways with Roman "Resolut1on" Fominok earlier this week. Both teams will have their former coaches playing for them at this event.
Fnatic come into Dreamleague Season 9, after a shock elimination in GESC: Indonesia Dota 2 Minor thanks a freak loss to a Divine Rapier wielding Dendi Lina. Fnatic has been on the upswing as of late, proving the value of adding Universe to their roster. Recently at ESL Katowice they only lost to VP and Liquid. It’s hard to knock a team for losing to the two best teams in the world. With a good performance here Fnatic might be moving up from having an outside shot at the TI7 invites to a Darkhorse category.
Can the returning Team Secret bring back their title-winning form?
Image Credits: Fnatic
Earlier on in this season, Team Secret was on fine form and were even the winners of the DreamLeague Major earlier in the season. It’s easy to say that Secret is a step ahead of the rest of the teams at this Minor based on the DPC rankings, but a check of recent form is important as well. While Secret may have “stumbled” (if you can even call it that) in the past couple months, having missed out on the finals of their past two tournaments, their losses in those tournaments were to two of their competitors here, Liquid and Newbee. With competition like that it’s almost a gamble to see how the brackets turn out, luckily for us, the brackets have already been released.
Team Secret have quite an easy road to the Winner’s final with Newbee being the only potential banana skin fixture. It would be a huge shock if Team Secret do not make it to the Top 3 let alone emerge as the victors.