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Lima Major Power Rankings: Team Liquid and BetBoom are the hot stuff

18 of the best teams in the world gather in Lima, Peru — South America’s first Dota Major — for a passionate fanbase sure to bring the house down.

From February 22 to March 5, the stacked field of teams is ready to stake a claim for the crown in the City of the Kings. Hometown favorites Evil Geniuses and beastcoast are in the form of their lives, while other powerhouses will be looking to upset them for the title.

In these power rankings, we’ve ranked how likely a team is to claim the championship at the end of the tournament based on their regional results and historical performances at offline tournaments.

The Lima Major power rankings

Happy to be here

EHOMETalon EsportsHellRaisers

A lot to prove

ExecrationGeek SlateShopify RebellionKnightsShopify RebellionEntity

Dark horses 

TSMPSG.LGDTeam AsterGaimin Gladiators

Best of the rest

Evil GeniusesBeastcoastTeam SpiritTundra Esports

Best of the best

LiquidBetBoom Team

Credit: ONE Esports

Happy to be here

EHOMETalon EsportsHellRaisers

EHOME

EHOME was one of the surprises in China, beating out more favored squads like Xtreme Gaming and Invictus Gaming to finish fourth and just qualify for the Major.

It’s truly difficult to get a bead on EHOME’s potential here. The roster consists of players that have been shuffling around Southeast Asia and China’s tier two scene for years. This will be the first Major for all five players in the squad, as well as the organization’s first since 2019’s MDL Chengdu Major.

While the Chinese region hasn’t inspired confidence as of late, it’s still no easy feat for EHOME to beat out more favored teams to appear at Lima. It’s difficult to see the team coming out ahead into the playoffs, especially in a brutal group stage that will see three teams eliminated — but for an overlooked squad from the start of the season, EHOME will be hoping to do some damage.

Talon Esports

Credit: Valve

While they’ve become arguably Southeast Asia’s most consistent team at qualifying for Majors, they’ve also consistently underperformed at offline tournaments. Of the three international LAN competitions Talon participated in last year — PGL Arlington Major, ESL One Malaysia 2022, and TI11 — they were eliminated in the group stage every time, failing to even see the playoffs once.

There’s hope that Talon will finally improve their performance when against the odds, especially since they made it into the top three in Tour 1 with some clean, solid victories over top squads like Geek Slate and Blacklist International towards the end of the season. And make no mistake, they will be against the odds again at Lima Major, only with fewer expectations foisted on them — which might actually help them.

HellRaisers

Credit: EPICENTER

The new-look HellRaisers, led by legendary captain Alexey “Solo” Berezin, refuses to quit.

Hellraisers will be without their carry Nikita “Daxak” Kuzmin for the tournament, instead relying on stand-in Artem “Yuragi” Golubiev from OG. Though Daxak is known for his unique hero pool from position one, he’s been playing more traditional hard carries recently — a good fit for Yuragi.

Still, it’s a team full of young talent with little LAN experience. Though HellRaisers performed well in Tour 1, they were thoroughly outclassed by BetBoom Team and Team Spirit — and it seems difficult to justify why the same won’t happen at Lima, combined with Solo’s recent poor track record at LAN.

A lot to prove

ExecrationGeek SlateShopify RebellionKnightsEntity

Execration

It seems like Execration’s biggest signing of the offseason was Major-winning head coach Park “March” Tae-won, who has brought stability to a talented group of players.

Execration was one of the most wildly inconsistent teams in the SEA region last year, often taking games off top teams but still turning in losing records. With just one roster change in the offseason, the team has surged from Division II in Tour 3 last year to first in Division I, earning a spot in the Lima Major.

SEA teams have had a hard time performing at LAN, however, so there’s a lot of work for Execration to do in Peru.

Geek Slate

Credit: ONE Esports

After a nearly two-year hiatus from the professional scene, Geek Fam returned with a bang, partnering with Slate Esports and immediately qualifying for the Major with the first iteration of their new lineup.

Surprisingly, the squad has gelled well almost immediately, despite being recruited from five different lineups in SEA. Rolen “skem” Ong has adjusted back into his old role as carry quickly, and could possibly catch out some teams unfamiliar with the team’s style of play. Always looking to switch things up for their position one, don’t be surprised to see Geek Slate pulling out some truly niche stuff — including stuff like carry Meepo and even Chen, depending on how good the heroes can deathball this meta.

Shopify Rebellion

Credit: Valve

Shopify’s only change was in their offlaner Jonáš “SabeRLight-” Volek. On paper, it’s a near-perfect fit. The offlaner, known for his strong initiation skills, helped the team seemingly unlock a new dimension.

Shopify Rebellion looked like they were firing on all cylinders before they ran into TSM, losing their only two games of the season to its rival team. Though it’s fair to say that their members are far more experienced at LAN, last year has not been kind to the old Evil Geniuses squad — you’ll have to go back to 2021’s WePlay AniMajor for the team’s last podium and top half finish.

The squad has stayed together for so long that we have a clear understanding of their upper and lower limits. Yes, Shopify Rebellion hasn’t been in the best of for, but we’ve seen what they are capable of — and it’s up to them to prove that the team can reach the lofty heights they’ve achieved before.

Knights

The newly-established Knights have taken the Chinese Dota 2 scene by storm, finishing third behind PSG.LGD and Team Aster to secure a ticket to the Lima Major.

Like EHOME, they consist of players that have mostly been jumping around in the tier two scene, though ardent SEA fans might recognize Vincent “AlaCrity” Hiew, who’s played for Geek Fam, Realty Rift, and Nigma Galaxy SEA.

Though controversy surrounds the team, they are still headed to the Lima Major for now. With a strong record in their own region, they will be looking to put the doubts behind their play away with good performances — though that might be difficult with a strong group ahead of them.

Entity

Credit: Valve

Entity has been a surprisingly consistent fixture in Western Europe, once again taking a place at the Major over powerhouse European teams like OG, Nigma Galaxy, and Team Secret.

Like his predecessor, new hard carry Alimzhan “watson” Islambekov — and the highest-ranked player on the European leaderboards — has shown off some truly ridiculous mechanical skills. 

And with Daniel “Stormstormer” Schoetzau, a midlaner who seems to improve every day (as well as specialize in some truly cancerous heroes), Entity is a squad that’s willing and capable of taking down any team — and just a few steps away to be considered in the upper tiers of the Lima Major.

Fnatic ‘temporarily withdraws’ from Dota 2Four milestones to watch out for at the Lima Major, according to Noxville

Dark horses 

TSMPSG.LGDTeam AsterGaimin Gladiators

TSM

Credit: Valve

TSM is finally NA’s best. The team crowned themselves champions with an emphatic victory over Shopify Rebellion — the old NA Evil Geniuses squad — and ended the season with a total of 14 wins and one loss over seven series, the best mark in all of Tour 1. It’s undeniable that NA Dota might be one of the most top-sided regions, but it’s still a commendable feat for the new-look squad.

TSM’s wholesale changes and going all-in on young, cosmopolitan talent seem to have taken tremendous effect. New additions Ilyas “kasane” Gainullin, Matthew “Ari” Walker, and Matthew “Whitemon” Filemon have been excellent, with offlaner kasane being in particularly scintillating form— even outperforming his own midlaner in KDA

Their two young cores, Enzo “Timado” Gianoli and Jonathan “Bryle” Guia, who have played together for more than two years now, continue to improve at every turn. They will want to improve on a disappointing end to 2022 when the aspiring squad finished tied last at TI11 and were eliminated in the group stage. 

With their new roster seemingly firing on all cylinders, we could see TSM making a strong appearance at Lima, similar to their ESL One Stockholm Major second-place run last year.

PSG.LGD

Credit: Valve

The new-look PSG.LGD is once again filled with near-unknowns. Aside from Cheng “NothingToSay” Jin Xiang and Zhang “y`” Yiping, the Chinese squad overhauled the rest of their roster after several of their members either retired or opted to take a break.

While they’ve definitely taken a noticeable drop in star power, few other organizations seem so capable of turning unpolished gems into shining jewels. Carry player Guo “shiro” Xuanang has been a particular revelation, especially with such big shoes to fill. After all, Wang “Ame” Chunyu was only widely regarded as the world’s best carry.

It’s hard to get a bead on their overall strength considered to the rest of the field, however. Chinese Dota endured one of its worst results in TI11 — no teams in the top three, the first time in the history of The International — and just the third time with less than two teams in the top six (2018 and 2011).

LGD looked solid in their region, earning first place with a 6-1 record —  but there’s a lot of Dota to be played at Lima to try and keep Chinese Dota’s luster alive.

Team Aster

Credit: Valve

Despite having their momentum cut short with the sudden retirement of star midlaner Zeng “Ori” Jiaoyang, Team Aster has continued their fine form from TI11 into Tour 1. The other Chinese team with a 6-1 record, Aster still qualified comfortably for the Lima Major.

Du “Monet” Peng continues to excel as a hard carry, and the rest of the team do their jobs well. The biggest question mark will surround Zhai “Xwy” Jingkai, Aster’s replacement mid. While Ori might not have been the flashiest of midlaners, he was a stabling presence that performed well at LAN, letting Monet take over the reins in the late game. While Xwy is no stranger to the LAN stage in years past, this will be his first Major since 2019 — and there will be pressure on him to perform.

Gaimin Gladiators

Credit: Valve

Gaimin Gladiators made one change to their roster, picking up Quinn “Quinn” Callahan as their new midlaner — and what’s a difference it’s made.

Quinn has been playing some of his best Dota, helping his new team to a comfortable second with a 5-2 record in Tour 1 — no mean feat in Dota’s most competitive region. This meant they qualified ahead of Tundra, Entity, and OG.

Still, Gaimin Gladiator might still be going through a purple patch. Last year, the core squad qualified for TI11 off stupendous form in the first half of the year, winning the Regional Final and placing fourth at ESL One Stockholm 2022 — only to barely scrape through the rest of the year, finishing sixth in 2022’s Tour 3 and a bottom half finish at TI11.

There’s a capable squad down here, capable of hanging out with the best — and this LAN could be the stepping stone for the Gladiators to firmly establish themselves in the top tier of teams.

Best of the rest

Evil GeniusesBeastcoastTeam SpiritTundra Esports

Evil Geniuses and beastcoast

Credit: Valve

It’s impossible to talk about these two South American giants separately. After all, they are the same ten players from TI11’s Thunder Awaken and beastcoast rosters that gave us some of the tournament’s most nailbiting games, just in a different configuration.

Both teams created an amalgamation of their former rosters, with many regarding EG to be the new SA superteam. Taking standout beastcoast players Jean “Chris Luck” Salazar and Adrián “Wisper” Dobles and adding them to the strong Thunder Awaken core, EG looked poised to take their region by storm.

But it was beastcoast with the first laugh, taking the series against EG in Tour 1, thereby finishing first. Still, no other teams came close — EG and BC ended up as the only two teams with winning records, whereas the four teams in the middle finished with three wins and four losses.

Now, they both enjoy home-ground advantage at the Lima Major. The two squads have shown that they can hang with the best at TI10. With how quickly SA is improving, count out these two rosters from championship contention at your own peril.

Both teams play a brand of Dota that heavily protects their hard carries, and they more than prove themselves worthy of it. Beastcoast’s Héctor “K1” Rodríguez and EG’s Christian “Pakazs” Casanova have shown the ability to take over games by themselves against the best teams in the world — and expect Peru to cheer their lungs out for them.

Team Spirit

Credit: Valve

Eastern European squad Team Spirit made just one change after their disappointing TI11 campaign, picking up talented midlaner Denis “Larl” Sigitov to replace Alexander “TORONTOTOKYO” Khertek.

Since then, it’s been a string of seconds — behind BetBoom Team in Tour 1, losing to Gaimin Gladiators in the BetBoom Xmas Show, and being taken down by Tundra in BetBoom’s Comics Zone tournament.

But in each series, Spirit clung on till the last second, losing all three matches by grinding through the full distance. The TI10 champions still look dangerous, especially Illya “Yatoro” Mulyarchuk, who continues to build his case as perhaps the best position one in the world. With their midlaner still settling in, Spirit is so close to finding the winning formula — and a long tournament like the Major might be what they need to figure it out.

Tundra Esports

Credit: Valve

Who can count out the TI11 champions? Even through a relatively disappointing Tour 1 — where they had to play three rounds of tiebreakers to qualify for the Major — when Tundra wins, it’s through some of the most stable and consistent gameplay.

There’s no team that prioritizes wave-clear as much as Tundra, and it’s rare to see their support duo on heroes that are incapable of farming. Even when the squad finds themselves in a deficit, they still seem capable of playing every inch of the map, accelerating as much as they can.

It seems truly annoying to match up against Tundra, who seem capable of taking the best course of action no matter how much they are in front and behind. Though in recent times, there’s been games where they are so far behind after disastrous laning stages that they can drag the game out, but cannot come back.

Tundra’s star still shines, evidenced by their recent victory at the BetBoom Universe: Episode I – Comics Zone tournament over Team Spirit.

Best of the best

LiquidBetBoom Team

Team Liquid

Credit: Valve

Team Liquid was undoubtedly the best team in Western Europe over the first Dota Pro Circuit season. The poaching of superstar midlaner Michal “Nisha” Jankowshi from Team Secret has brought the team to another level, helping them earn a clean 7-0 record in Dota’s most competitive region. The last time a team went undefeated in WEU was Secret with, well, Nisha, Ludwig “zai” Wåhlberg, and Lasse “MATUMBAMAN” Urpalainen, in 2021’s first season.

It would be difficult to find somebody who disagrees with placing Liquid as the outright best team in the world. Nisha’s addition is obviously a huge factor, but the rest of the roster has consistently stepped up their games again and again, as evidenced by Michael “miCKe” Vu and Samuel “Boxi” Svahn’s role switches which have dramatically improved their form.

Still, the team doesn’t have the best track record at LANs. Despite displaying online prowess in the past, the Aydin “iNSaNiA” Sarkohi-led roster has so far failed to place any higher than 5th-6th in their Major appearances — aside from TI11’s third place. But speak the name Nisha, the bastion of consistency — at least at making opponent midlaners wish they were playing anyone else — and Liquid’s tendency to underperform seems to be a thing of the past.

BetBoom Team

Credit: Valve

Another undefeated team goes on top of the power rankings. Eastern Europe’s Betboom Team has taken the region by storm, both before and after their stunning results.

The organization, even though relatively new to the pro Dota scene, pulled off five high-profile signings with four former Virtus Pro players and Team Spirit’s TORONTOTOKYO in an unexpected role switch to hard support.

Despite some concerns over the members’ well-known toxicity, the first DPC season has gone off without a hitch. BetBoom’s flying start saw them earn seven well-fought victories, including the TI10 champions Team Spirit who’s continued to look impressive. It’s a testament to how well BetBoom’s players can do, but there remain lingering concerns over the roster’s stability — but whether inside or outside the game, they likely will be one of the Lima Major’s most entertaining.