A lot can change in two months, especially when teams in the 2021 Dota Pro Circuit never stopped playing matches and fighting for a spot at The International 10 in between seasons. Following the end of the ONE Esports Singapore Major on April 4, the second season of regional competition picked up, with some slight shuffling between the upper and lower divisions.
Now, the second season is all but wrapped up, with all 18 teams having locked in their spots at the WePlay Esports AniMajor earlier today. And not only have all the spots been filled, there’s massive turnover compared to the first Major of the year.
Starting with the top seeds, only one team retained their spot while the remainder are all newly crowned regional champions. Virtus Pro are still the top team in the CIS, while Alliance, Team Aster, T1, Quincy Crew, and NoPing e-sports all took the win in their respective regions for the first time.
Beyond the top seeding, three different regions also have new teams that are making their first appearance at a Major this season.
China, Europe, and North America will have the same teams from the Singapore Major representing them in Kyiv. But CIS, Southeast Asia, and South America will all have one new team, with SEA being the only region who’s previous top seed did not qualify.
For SA, NoPing took the first seed away from beastcoast esports, dropping them to the second seed and eliminating Thunder Predator from contention. TP are still likely to earn a spot at TI after their performance in both regional leagues and the Singapore Major, but they won’t be making an appearance at the second Major.
In the CIS, VP maintained the top seed, but Natus Vincere dropped out of the second seed and finished 3-4 in sixth place. Despite qualifying for the first Major, Na’Vi were forced to withdraw due to COVID-19 concerns and are now not going to appear at a single Major this season.
Team Spirit ended up taking the second seed in CIS in season two, with AS Monaco Gambit holding onto the third seed once again.
SEA had the biggest turnover, with Fnatic failing to qualify after being the region’s top seed after season one. The team did underperform at the Singapore Major, failing to win a single series and being eliminated by Neon Esports.
Execration beat Fnatic in a tiebreaker game for the third seed, while T1 jumped to the top seed after defeating TNC Predator in their own tiebreaker matchup, meaning TNC were pushed to the second seed. Neon also missed the cut despite a fantastic run at the last Major.
At the time of writing, China is the only region with matches that relate to Major seeding still in play, but both Vici Gaming and PSG.LGD are guaranteed a spot regardless of the result. That means both Elephant and EHOME are among the teams who were projected to perform well at the start of the DPC who have failed to appear at a single Major, along with the likes of OG in EU.