North America's DPC Upper Division
is a fascinating group because we have Evil Geniuses finally back playing competitive Dota after nearly a year off. Quincy Crew has dominated the region in their absence; will they dominate with Evil Geniuses back? North America’s most successful captain is back: Peter "ppd" Dager. 4 Zoomers are ready with their new offlane Braxton "Brax" Paulson, and a European lad has arrived to join team Undying. So, let’s try and rank them!
Top of the group
Despite their absence, Evil Geniuses
still have some of the best Dota 2 players. The roster contains phenomenal players, and with Daryl Koh "iceiceice" Pei Xiang, the latest addition, the team looks strong. There is no recent match history to go off for the boys in blue, but putting them at the top doesn’t seem unfair given that they’re the only sponsored team in NA. Meaning they will be able to get all players into the same region and most likely in a team house where others may not be able to afford the flight cost. I’m confident we’ll see Evil Geniuses back at the top of the region when they return.
had firmly solidified themselves at the top of North America in EG’s absences, and they could well find themselves topping the groups if they play their cards right. Quincy Crew has the most stable roster in this division, with their last change being Rodrigo "Lelis" Santos back in June. They also won seven tournaments in a row during the summer and looked a step above everyone else. The DPC addition can only fire up and motivate a team that already looked very motivated, and they’ll undoubtedly give Evil Geniuses a run for their money.
Middle of the pack
have looked strong in the North American region but have to prove themselves when the stakes matter and a place at The International is available. Unfortunately, the team is inconsistent, managing a fifth-sixth place finish at Realms Collide: The Burning Darkness and then a second place at the BTS Pro Series Season 4: Americas. For the 4 Zoomers, this could bite them back because, with only a few games to decide the group stage, there isn’t much room for a bad day or week. Depending, which 4 Zoomers turn out, we will either see them fighting for the top of the group or struggling somewhere at the bottom.
led by ppd are back but with some fresh blood in the roster. This roster appears to have the same makeup as the Evil Geniuses roster that won The International 5! We’ve seen the four players before and have achieved decent results with the up and coming Midlaner in David "dnm" Cossio, who just aged 17, looks to be a brilliant prospect. The Sadboys haven’t played many matches together, but it’s hard to ignore the two International winners on the squad in ppd and Clinton "Fear" Loomis. Coupled with some strong talent from the region, this team will do well.
is a new team formed with some talented players and EU player Jonáš "SabeRLight-" Volek. This team has some excellent players, but without any results to go off and a group of players that haven’t played together, it’s hard to put them any higher. With some experienced players leading them in Kim "DuBu" Doo-young and David "MoonMeander" Tan, they can rock the Upper Division boat.
The likely to be relegated
Black N Yellow
Again, Black N Yellow
is a new thrown-together roster with no previous match history to go on. They were directly invited into the Upper Division’s qualifiers and didn’t drop a single game, but it’s not much to go on given the competition. Eric "Ryoya" Dong had a stint with EG as a stand-in and looked great.
A-Team and 5ManMidas
Having never heard of these players and them just about making it into the Upper Division, I don’t see these two rosters making any vast splashes. Both of these teams, A-Team
took the last places in the upper division, and with the other teams in the division, anything above relegation would be a massive success for them. If they get relegated, which seems likely, they’ll learn a lot from playing the best teams in the region, which they can use to improve and come back stronger.