Team Spirit looked shaky at times, but proved why they were the TI10 champs in their opening match of the EEU DPC Tour 3.
Team Spirit has defeated Pari Parni 2-0 to start out their Eastern European Dota Pro Circuit Tour 3 opener. The TI10 champions were able to secure a pair of wins thanks to their solid drafts and dominant gameplay.
Coming into the game, Team Spirit were looking to reclaim some of their quickly faded glory. The TI champs have not been the dominant squad we’ve expected, and part of that is the lack of games they’ve played. Missing an entire DPC split, making it to the Major through the replacement qualification tournament, but having a lacklustre showing means we’re really not sure of the level of this team.
CIS Rejects are now Pari Parni
Team Spirit were facing of against the squad formerly known as the CIS Rejects. The team officially changed their name to PARI PARNI after Paribet became the sponsor of the Dota 2 roster. In addition, former Virtus.pro general manager Sergey Glamazda has joined the team in a ‘producer’ role as per an announcement on Russian social media site VK.
Having lost to Natus Vincere in their first match of the season, Pari Parni were looking for their first win of the DPC Tour 3.
For game one, Spirit broke reacted to target banning of certain heroes by picking up one of the most frustrating lineups possible. With the Puck mid for TorontoTokyo, and the Rubrick top for Miposhka, there was very little their opponents could do in lane, even with strong laning heroes like Wraith King, Hoodwink, and Io.
After building with a solid, but unexciting early game, Spirit were just able to pick the exact fights they wanted. Using their superior micro and great catch, there was nothing the opposing heroes of PP could do. And after two huge fights, at the 20-minute mark there weas over a 10k gold lead. As the Terrorblade scaled out of control there was there was nothing PP could do.
Despite another strong start from Team Spirit, in game two Pari Parni looked far better for game two, firstly because they picked up almost all the heroes that were causing them issues in game one, and secondly because of depressed kid’s Ember Spirit. The PP mid laner did exactly what you’d want from an Ember, rotating well, punishing his opponent, and picking up free kills.
With Spirit unable to take initiative, what ensued was a stalemate, with picks on either side. But while each team were able to get pick offs, neither was able to capitalize. At 31 minutes, Pari Parni had their best opportunity, after catching Collapse’s Doom and transitioning into Roshan. This forced Team Spirt onto the backfoot, and the team found themselves trapped on their highground.
But like so many times in Dota 2, it only takes one mistake to change the tides. And with a quick turn on the sieging PP, Team Spirit took back control of the game. Killing the Terrorblade, they marched down mid to try and secure the second game.
But as they were unable to push down and end the game, Spirit were forced back to their highground again. But this just lead to even more incredible plays by Team Spirit. As TorontoTokyo baited a fight, PP bit too hard, and lost multiple members. Everytime PP tried to push highground, their caution meant they could be exploited. And that was it, at almost exactly 60 minutes, Team Spirit were able to take advantage of a mistake and end the match.
Interview with Mira
"We had a long talk after the Major" explained Mira in the post game interview. The team has clearly changed its tone after dropping out too early. "We're going to go into the zone before TI, and get better."
Talking about the healing changes with salve Mira explained it wasn't much of an issue: "I just buy more tangos. 9 or 12(!)." And talking about the return of Pudge to the meta, Mira was very revealing: "It's our secret strat." He explained. "But I guess it's not a secret anymore."
Overall, the team sounds far more confident and relaxed. This is the same team we grew to love over TI10, and their gearing up for International form once more.
Still, Team Spirit aren’t quite the dominant force we’ve expected after TI10 yet, but they’re getting there. The more games under their belt the better.
As for Pari Parni, this isn’t a great start for a team under a new banner, but it's something to build on. They pushed the TI champs to the limit in game two, and that’s something that can be honed into future success.