The whirlwind journey of Team Spirit in The International 2021 was nothing less than a dream. From underdogs to lifting the Aegis of Immortals, the narrative was filled with drama, suspense, and unmatched passion. This piece delves deep into Team Spirit’s journey post their TI10 win and their current state in the world of professional Dota 2.
The Fairytale Win at TI10
It’s not every day that you see a team come from the qualifiers and clinch the title. The International 2021 was historic for various reasons:
- A European Endeavor: Hosted in Bucharest, Romania, TI returned to European grounds after a decade. The last time Europe hosted TI was during its inception in 2011 in Cologne, Germany.
- Challenges Amidst the Pandemic: With rising Covid cases and key players testing positive, Valve took the hard decision of proceeding without a live audience.
- The Unstoppable Spirit: Despite these challenges, Team Spirit’s performance was undeterred. Their astonishing defeat of the giants, PSG.LGD, in the grand finals was a testament to their prowess and determination. Their mix of CIS aggression, strategic drafts, and adaptation to late-game scenarios had everyone on the edge of their seats.
However, the journey post their historic win wasn’t as smooth:
- Inconsistencies in the 2021-2022 Season: While they concluded the DPC season by defeating PSG.LGD in the Arlington Major, their TI11 performance was lackluster, leading to a disappointing 13th-16th finish.
- Roster Changes: The underwhelming performance in TI11 resulted in some roster changes. Notably, their star mid-laner, TORONTOTOKYO, took a surprising role swap and began playing as a position 5 support for BetBoom Team.
Present Status and The International 2023
Today, as we approach The International 2023, Team Spirit’s journey has come full circle:
- DPC Seasons 2022-2023 Performance: Team Spirit and BetBoom both secured spots for TI23, with the former finishing in 10th place, while the latter secured a spot amidst much drama, finishing 12th.
- The Return to American Soil: The International 2023 marks its return to the US, with Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena set to be the battleground. This edition has introduced a unique two-phase format, segregating the group stages and playoffs.
Team Spirit’s journey serves as a testament to the ever-evolving nature of competitive Dota 2. Their fairytale victory, subsequent challenges, and transformations signify the ups and downs every team faces. As we gear up for The International 2023, the world will be keenly watching Team Spirit and their contemporaries, hoping for another year of unforgettable Dota.