The groups are almost coming to a close, with 16 more games left and front runners like EG, EHome, OG, and DC we are in for an exciting last day. The teams have unveiled some of their best strategies and hero player combinations already. I’m going to go over and rank the five scariest hero-player combinations that every team should fear, and maybe ban, in the main event.
1) Ehome.LanM on Kunkka (win rate: 100% in 5 games)
The obituary for LanM’s career as a carry player has been written. LanM has transitioned back to the role he was destined for; support. With Ehome finally solidifying a comfortable identity, they are incredibly terrifying and are sitting at the top of their group after the first two days. LanM has shown an incredible ability to find farm everywhere on the map as a support Kunkka. He moves around in the offlane, he roams the short and mid lanes, and he plays aggressive wherever he can. With great discipline, he rarely dies and is the complete package as far as this hero is concerned. He also has a very interesting style of maxing X mark and Tidebringer as opposed to traditional support methodology of Q – E skill building. It’s also quite interesting how he compliments Iceiceice’s hero pools, utilizing the x-mark to allow safe base pushes when Iceiceice plays Luna, Antimage, and Juggernaut. With a 100% win rate, LanM decimated Secret twice and put a clinic on teams like Fnatic and Escape. He shows carry-level brilliance of armlet usage with the excellent carry-complementary utility of an elite level support player.
2) DC.W33 on Mirana (win rate: 75% in 8 games)
With the 6.88 change to Mirana’s Aghanims, she has become one of the most popular heroes in the metagame right now. Alongside Sumail, Dendi, and Old_Chicken, W33 has been one of the few players to popularize and many players to see success on this hero in the middle lane. W33 is an aficionado that flourishes when playing explosive semi-carry heroes in the mid lane. Some of his staples are Invoker, Puck, Meepo, and now Mirana as well. W33's consistent build is Aghs, Blink, Ethereal blade, Dagon, and he aims for an extremely explosive damage build in the mid and late game and to focus on blowing up any non-BKB heroes on the field. All teams should be terrified of this monstrosity.
3) DC.Resolut1on on Morphling (win rate: 75% in 4 games)
Resolut1ion, despite being relatively new to the carry role, is an elite level Morphling player. With incredible presence of mind when it comes to illusion micro, split push, and abusing morph to push the hero to its limits; he is of the best. Reso has proven over his three games on this hero that you must continue to ban it against DC and you must fear this player-hero combination. Reso’s best game with this hero was his series against MVP, where with an incredible play after his team was losing during the entire game he managed to take all of the rax against MVP and solidify a win despite NEVER recovering their gold deficit. In their other amazing Morphling game against Secret, Reso was also completely down in net worth alongside his team for the entire early and mid game. With great team fights and fantastic pickoffs; they managed to sure rax after rax and a final Roshan to split the map, isolate heroes, and destroy objectives. These two games were must watches of the group stage and that all comes down to Reso’s pure excellence on this hero.
4) Secret.Arteezy on Huskar (win rate: 75%, 4 games)
Arteezy and Secret have had an extremely disappointing time in the group stages, but that shouldn’t take away from his monstrous Huskar performances on Day 1. Winning all three games he played on the hero, Artour showed impeccable timing with his armlet-toggling and came up big time and time again. So fearsome was his Huskar performance that he was banned in all of Secret’s games on Day 2 except for one – a loss against Digital Chaos – where he still impressed on the hero.With a Best of 1 coming up against LGD, the Chinese team would be foolish to let Arteezy have his favoured Huskar when the stakes are so damn high. He might just be a boy playing some dotes, but you don’t wanna make life harder for yourself by having to beat a 9k MMR player on his best hero so far this tournament.
5) OG.Cr1t on Elder Titan (100% win rate, 3 games)
Cr1t is by far the best elder titan player in the world. He popularized the hero at and around The Manila Major with excellent team fight coordination and heavy focus on swaying the mid lane for Miracle with spirit harass. I’ve spoken about how OG’s only weakness in a best of three historically has been Chinese teams, and Cr1t has busted his Elder Titan out for two group stage matches against two of the fiercest Chinese teams; LGD and Wings. This hero is very often banned against this team, otherwise, it would see much more frequent play. Expect Cr1t’s Elder Titan to be continuously banned because it is FEARED.
Honorable Mention: EG.Zai on Wisp (30% win rate, 3 games)
Sure, kind of a wildcard, but I’ll explain why a low win rate hero is on this list. Part of the reason I think their win rate is so low is because worse teams like TNC and Escape are banning wisp first round against EG, and the three times they managed to bust it out were against two of the best teams in the world; Wings and OG – in matches they were most likely going to lose anyway if history has any precedent. In general, Zai has delivered fantastic plays on the hero and is absolutely feared on it. I also think this is incredibly significant because historically none of EG’s previous supports have been able to play the hero, including Fear, Aui, and PPD. Now that they have a Wisp player, and an elite level one at that, EG is a more complete team and they are deadly if they can get their hands on the often banned Wisp for Zai.