The biggest Dota 2 event in the world is here, one that will conclude this year’s Dota Pro circuit. This is the 11th annual edition of The International, being held in Asia for only the second time. This year’s edition is set to be an extravagant affair in Singapore, featuring 20 teams across two groups.
The league phase will feature a single round-robin system, with the top four from each pool advancing to the upper-bracket playoffs. Teams from fifth to eighth will go to the main event as lower-bracket contenders. The bottom two from each group will be eliminated and won’t make it through to the main event.
The playoffs will be held in front of a live audience beginning October 20. The main event will feature 16 teams – the top eight from each pool – in a double-elimination bracket. The extravaganza will culminate with the grand finals on October 30 at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
This year’s International will feature a smaller prize pool than any of the previous tournaments. However, over the years, prize money for this event has increased rapidly over time. Because battle pass and crowdfunding have run at a slower pace, there has been a direct impact on the prize pool. Yet, it’s among the more financially rewarding tournaments.
Before we look at the favorites and dark horses for The International, make sure you check out our Dota 2 betting guide.
|Royal Never Give Up||+1000|
Odds as of October 8 at Sportsbook
Favorites To Win Dota 2 TI 2022
Runners-up of The International 2021, PSG.LGD have slowly revved up. They won the Riyadh Masters, where they inflicted some kind of revenge on Team Spirit, and finished runners-up at the PGL Arlington Major.
Ame had played a key role in much of this success, sowing the seeds of PSG.LGD’s domination as they build toward trying to go one up on last year’s results. Let’s be clear. It’s not like PSG.LGD are invincible. But their consistency, a byproduct of stability, makes them strong favorites nonetheless.
Yet, for everything they have done over the past year, their loss to Team Spirit in last year’s International final continues to be a major talking point. But it’s not as if they are intimidated by Spirit; in fact, they beat them convincingly in the group stage and nearly made a magnificent comeback in the final from a 2-0 deficit. They truly hit the high notes when they won in Riyadh.
So there’s a healthy rivalry that has developed, and perhaps a new chapter is waiting to be written. If there’s one team that knows how to turn the tide from the depths of despair, it’s PSG.LGD. They have got the experience and pedigree to turn a corner from impossible situations. This invariably puts their opponents under as much pressure, even if they may be on top.
Team Spirit (+500)
Several Chinese Dota 2 fans get nightmares about their team not banning Magnus but, hey, Spirit are looking to replicate their epic run to the title last year, one of the best in the game’s history. To have bounced back from having lost four games in the group stage and then make a run from the lower bracket was the stuff dreams are made of. They then won 10 of their next 12 games to take the title. During this magnificent run, they beat some fancied teams like OG and Virtus Pro.
There’s an unmistakable confidence in Team Spirit, something they exuded when they faced PSG.LGD with the pressure firmly on them in the final for a second straight time at TI10. Eventually, they overcame the odds to win.
Their game was marked by their propensity to take more risks and try to catch opponents off guard with plans made and executed on the fly. It’s something they have managed to do wonderfully so far, and there’s no reason why they shouldn’t continue to do so going forward.
Like in that final, they figured PSG.LGD would tire faster, especially in games they tended to deem unredeemable, to train their energies toward the next ones in the series. Team Spirit swooped in under such circumstances to drive home the advantage.
Dark Horses To Win Dota 2 TI 2022
It’s tough to win TI, and nearly impossible to do it twice, no less in back-to-back years. While everyone’s asking if Team Spirit can actually do this, history points to OG and their back-to-back triumphs at TI8 and TI9. They are as dangerous as they come, a team that flies under the radar of some of the superstars but is capable of stinging the best on their day.
They are a team that’s slowly climbing their way back up the charts following some high-profile retirements and the absence of key players such as N0tail and Topson.
They have had to rebuild and have put faith in Misha’s leadership. Instead of pursuing established superstars, they have gone for young players who could potentially give them return on investment for years to come.
This decision to rebuild has given them mixed results, but they have all bought into a long-term vision that gives them clear head space and understanding of how results in the short term aren’t going to influence their approach. In the DPC Winter Tour, they finished in the top four and made it through to the regional finals.
They were third, which led to fans wondering if they were past their prime. But over the years, OG have proven to surprise many, like they did in the Spring Tour, where they won the ESL Stockholm Major to secure their spot here. At the Riyadh Masters, they finished third and followed up with a slightly disappointing finish – they were fourth – at PGL Arlington Major. Yet, in those two campaigns, there were several positives they could draw.
Victory at ESL Malaysia, where they swept Team Aster 3-0, was seen as a step in the right direction. So write them off at your own peril. This is a team that has long proven the naysayers wrong when they least expect it. Don’t expect that to change.