LFT: Top players from around the world in need of a team

By Cristy RamadaniDecember 10, 2020
The DPC 2019-2020 season was interrupted in March when the pandemic hit, and travel suspensions and lockdowns started to go into effect. Valve postponed The International 10 indefinitely as well as the new DPC 2020-2021 season.
But now, it’s time to rejoice. The latest news from Valve is that the DPC will finally begin on January 18 (fingers and toes crossed on this one!).
With the new season just around the corner, here’s a look at some of the top players from the various regions who are free agents and ready to be plucked for the new TI winning team.
Everyone wants their turn to lift the Aegis and collect The International's massive grand prize.
Everyone wants their turn to lift the Aegis and collect The International's massive grand prize.

The Players

Europe

Ninjas in Pyjamas released their entire roster November 30. The Swedish organization cited financial instability due to the pandemic crisis, lack of events and LANs, as well as the postponed DPC season as the reason. The team had been mostly together since April 2020, which in Dota 2 years is …. well, a long time. Whether or not they will stay together as a lineup or go their separate ways remains to be seen, but Charlie "CharlieDota" Arat, Ondřej "Supream^" Štarha, Jonáš "SabeRLight-" Volek, and Adrian "Era" Kryeziu are essentially free agents at this time.
5men was a team full of veteran and highly decorated players. The team had promise and potential but disbanded mid-November. Each of these players, Marcus "Ace" Hoelgaard, Rasmus "Chessie" Blomdin, Rasmus "MISERY" Filipsen, Johan "pieliedie" Åström, and Andreas Per "Xibbe" Ragnemalm, are bursting with talent and experience and are available.
Malthe "Biver" Winther, the quiet and unassuming but talented support player has indicated that he is back and ready to play for the new DPC season. He’s a seasoned globe trotter with stints in NA, SA, and EU, so he could end up anywhere!
Maurice "KheZu" Gutmann last played for CR4ZY in North America up until early October when the organization released the entire roster and dropped out of Dota 2. This German’s career peaked in the 2016-2017 season with his time on Team Secret but he has remained in top shape, always seeking ways to improve and new teams to compete with.

CIS

Zaur "Cooman" Shakhmurzaev was the last one standing for Cyber Legacy when they dropped all of their line-up on November 4. That was until he left the team on November 20.
Alexey "Solo" Berezin, Vladimir "No[o]ne" Minenko, Bakyt "Zayac" Emilzhanov, Roman "RAMZES666" Kushnarev (and Syed Sumail "SumaiL" Hassan — not from CIS but currently playing within the region) recently formed the powerhouse stack (well, if at least on paper) Just Error. Not quite performing to the expectations or the hopes of fans, is this a stack going to stick it out, or is this just the hottest group of free agents ripe and ready for picking?

North America

Syed Sumail "SumaiL" Hassan, after starting a groundbreaking career with Evil Geniuses at age 15, went on to win The International in the same year. He spent five years playing under the NA giant’s banner, rising in fame and collecting many trophies and accomplishments. In the post-TI9 shuffle, he left EG on rocky terms and joined Quincy Crew but was sidelined for four months over what has been rumored and speculated to have been contract-related issues. The “King” was then able to compete at the highest levels of Dota 2 once again, joining OG, but it was short-lived thanks to the pandemic and regional issues. Now part of a CIS/Russian team, SumaiL is quickly becoming a very mobile and versatile free agent for a team with deep pockets.
Jaron "monkeys-forever" Clinton has been around the NA block, playing on various teams since 2012. Most recently, he was kicked from 4 Zoomers on November 12 just before the Realms Collide online event started. The support player has stated he will be on hiatus until the LAN events start, but we are pretty sure that means when DPC begins since DPC is life.
Zakari William Lee "Zfreek" Freedman was touted as one of the most promising and underrated support players in the NA region. So much so that OG snatched him up when they formed OG.Seed. Unfortunately, the project was sidelined in July due to, you guessed it, the pandemic and he has been flying under the radar since. A man of few teams but several long-term commitments, there is no doubt he is a valuable pick up for any team.
Kurtis "Aui_2000" Ling was another casualty of the CR4ZY release. Since then, the captain has been on break, but decorated as a TI champion and a long history of competitive play with a plethora of titles and trophies, Aui’s return could bring a new team to the forefront in NA.
A former teammate of Aui, David "MoonMeander" Tan is also still without a team since last playing for CR4ZY. The former HoN player has been competing in Dota 2 since 2014 and has a foot in both NA and SEA. For him, the possibilities could be endless for the upcoming season.
The newest NA team to emerge is the Sadboys stack, which has signaled the return of retired Peter "ppd" Dager and brought Clinton "Fear" Loomis out of hiatus. These two sadboys should be anything but. TI-champions and holding numerous praise-worthy accolades, if this stack is just “4fun,” they are going to be highly sought after free agents. If the team sticks together, an organization will be looking to sweep in and pick up their tickets to fame.
While there are a few famous North American players, none are perhaps more infamous as Jacky "EternaLEnVy" Mao. The Canadian player is one of the most polarizing personalities in the Dota 2 scene. Dota 2 enthusiasts either love him or hate him. However, no one can disagree that he is one of those few players who genuinely try hard and give everything they can to the game. Taking him onto a team can mean some rather long but quite exciting games where they can win or lose from his risky plays and no-holds-barred attempts to win.

South America

Guilherme Silva "Costabile" Costábile is a Brazillian player who last played in June 2020 along with teammate Otávio "Tavo" Gabriel. Both have Pro Circuit and LAN experience and are top-notch players who already have a proven track record.
William "hFn" Medeiros is a veteran carry player who hails from Brazil. He started his professional career in 2013 and worked through the ranks and the emerging regional scene. Last playing in April 2020, he started and paused his career playing for paiN Gaming.

Southeast Asia

The region rocked with possibly the most instability and more shuffle madness is Southeast Asia. The region just can’t seem to hold together a stable roster and solid lineup this last year. From Fnatic’s revolving door of players and picking apart rosters to several organizations dropping their teams, the chaos has left multiple players as free agents for the new season.
The ink had barely had time to dry on the Fnatic contract with Nico "eyyou" Barcelon when the team had already announced parting ways with him. After all of one week on the roster, this seasoned regional veteran is once again a free agent. Having experience as both a coach and player, he’s an asset to any team in need of support.
The American/Filipino player Michael "ninjaboogie" Ross Jr. began his career in 2012 coming from HoN. The support/captain has quite a bit of experience under his belt and some trophies mounted on his wall to give any team a boost for DPC points. Although having a foot in both countries, he’s primarily a SEA player but there is no reason he couldn’t head west.
Ryan "Bimbo" Jay Qui, also known as "Raging Potato” is only 25 years old but has been playing Dota 2 competitively since 2011. Yes, we did the math and that means he was 15 years old when he first was picked up by Mineski. He has literally grown up in the scene and last played in November under the Execration banner.
Korea’s got both Pyo "MP" No-a and Lee "Forev" Sang-don without teams. These two have been on and off again teammates through the years. Although Korea, which seems to dominate other areas of the esports industry, has had a difficult and almost non-existent entry into Dota 2, these two players have already been part of the SEA and NA scenes and could be up for transfer anywhere.
Lai "Ahjit" Jay Son and Tue "ah fu" Soon Chuan both hail from Malaysia and have played in both SEA and in China during their careers. Their high skill and versatility put them both (and potential teams) at an advantage for becoming a part of a winning team.

China

Chen "Cty" Tianyu first started playing Dota 2 late in 2012 and has been part of the Chinese professional scene until late 2018. Since then he hasn’t been seen much but that can easily change, as no one ever really retires or goes away -- especially in China.
Liu "Sylar" Jiajun began his career in early 2011 and has been a competitor in multiple International events through the years. He was last part of 4AM until October, making him very much still active and in top form to be picked up in the constant reshuffling happening in China before the DPC season begins.
Lu "Fenrir" Chao is perhaps one of the most famous and well-known Chinese captains and support players. Most often appearing quiet and reserved, he is a consistently stable character both within the team setting and as an individual player. If we could just get him to be a duo with Xu "fy" Linsen again, all would be right.

2020-2021 DPC Season

Everyone fasten your seatbelts. We're going into unchartered Dota 2 territories now.
About nine months ago, Valve announced the introduction of Regional Leagues as part of the newest DPC season format. The original plan was six leagues with two divisions each (eight teams per division) featuring a prize pool of $280,000 per season. LAN Majors would follow each season featuring 18 teams from all regions and sport a prize pool of $500,000 plus DPC points. We're waiting for confirmation of this format for the DPC season in 2021.
Registration for the new DPC season has not yet begun, so technically, everyone and everything is still up for grabs. In a world of high-level competition, with everything on the line to get to The International, not even contracts are insurmountable.
Keep your eyes peeled for the official registration time, and our updates to keep you well-informed as we head into the highly anticipated DPC season.
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