Paparazi Names the Hardest Midlaners He has Ever Faced
Due to the nature of the 1v1 matchup in the midlane, it is perhaps the most important lane in Dota 2 when it comes to out skilling your opponents. As a result, people are always talking about who the best midlaner in the world is, and the answer tends to change over time. Recently, Xtreme Gaming's Zhang "Paparazi" Chengjun, who has often been at the center of such discussions and considered to be one of the best midlaners in the pro Dota 2, named the hardest opponents he has faced in the midlane. Furthermore, Paparazi explained why he decided to return to the midlane after playing as a safelaner during the last Dota Pro Circuit (DPC).
Paparazi says SumaiL and Yi from Aster. Aries are the toughest midlaners he has ever faced
The post-match winner's interview for the China DPC 2021-22 Tour 3: Division 1 featured Paparazi who had a rather intriguing response to the toughest midlaners he has faced. “Maybe SumaiL and the midlaner from Aster.Aries,” he said.
In a similar vein to Paparazi, Syed Sumail "SumaiL" Hassan has been regarded throughout the years as a midlaner at the top of the game. A natural lane master, SumaiL, currently playing for Nigma Galaxy, is well known for his understanding of how various matchups work, which gives him an edge over most other players.
Zhai "yi” Jingkai, the Aster.Aries midlaner, on the other hand, is a relatively lesser-known player in the worldwide competitive scene. He is well known for his stint with Keen Gaming, where the team finished in the top six in tournaments such as the ESL One Hamburg 2017, the Bucharest Minor, and the DreamLeague S13 Major. The player also participated with Keen Gaming at The International 9.
Furthermore, Paparazi, who has been dominating his opponents now in Tour 3, also explained why he is back to the midlane after serving as Elephant's carry at the DPC 2021. “I am such a noob position one that’s why I turned into position two,” he said, to the laughter of the panelists.
Despite his modest answer, Paparazi is well known for both his midlane and safelane performances due to his raw mechanical skills. The player had won the 1v1 Solo Mid competitions in the Dota 2 Asia Championships 2017 and 2018, showcasing his raw skills and defeating the top midlane talent like SumaiL, Amer "Miracle-" Al-Barkawi, Yeik "MidOne" Nai Zheng, and more to become a two-time champion.
Currently, Paparazi and Xtreme Gaming are competing in the China Dota 2 Pro Circuit 2021-22 Tour 3, where they appear well-positioned to qualify for the PGL Arlington Major. A 4-1 Win-Loss record means that Xtreme just needs to win any of its two remaining series to confirm a slot at the Major.