However, one of those rising stacks has borderline stolen the show. LBZS has entered the upper bracket off an outstanding performance in the preliminaries. Their clean 4-0 match record points to a deep bracket run. Let’s take a closer look at their roster and see if their success really is as unprecedented as fans think.
Technically already under contract with LGD.int, Yang Yongjie is the latest player to temporarily break from his normal team to fill out a five-stack. The carry player is one of China’s best-kept secrets. He previously played for prestigious teams including Keen Gaming and EHOME.
His Sven has become the team’s trump card for close series, securing 2:1 records against Aster, Sparking Arrow,
Liu Shaojun is a little-known player without many accolades to his name, but he fits right in with the rest of China’s best mid laners. He previously played for Newbee.Young and Cellular Game before both organizations' dissolutions. While not the most mechanically skilled player at the event, EX is particularly adept at leaving his lane to create impact elsewhere. His early-game antics are personified by his signature mid Doom, which has a 71% win rate in the current patch. He doesn’t just save it for the ideal matchup; if EX can go even with iG.Ori’s
infamous Queen of Pain,
he can go even with anyone.
Keen Gaming’s phenomenal string of upsets across 2019 lit a fire under China’s top teams, and Zhuang Yongfu played a huge part in their success. Shunning the regional custom of being a walking stun for his mid, xiaofu is one of the few offlaners that works side-by-side with the carry. His Omniknight is largely responsible for MS’ success on Sven; the combo currently has a 100% win rate at China Dota2 Pro Cup. His core hero pool of Dark Seer, Centaur, Phoenix, and the aforementioned cleric is archetypal of China’s preferred pool, but his playstyle is as freeform as they come.
Another Newbee.Young survivor, Tang Xiaolei has the rough job of playing position 4 in a region chock-full of Godlike soft supports. CatYou separated himself by sticking with his favorite hero Earth Spirit, and much of his competition has followed suit. His five games on the hero have led to an 80% win rate and several bans from opposing squads. Whether his Tusk is meant to be a fourth core or not isn’t quite clear, but his combined 16-7-50 KDA from just two games points to the former.
The most mysterious player on the team, the only things we know about FARTHER are a result of his gameplay. The hard support has no connections to previous teams and no recorded pro play aside from a handful of CDEC Qualifier matches in 2015 where he played mid. As for 2020, FARTHER shows no hesitation when it comes to his comfort picks; five games on Grimstroke means five wins on Grimstroke. Even his second most played hero, Io, has a 100% win rate. He’s not afraid of more offbeat heroes like Chen and Treant Protector, but his consistency is too airtight to ignore.