Just in time for the Stockholm Major, Valve released patch 7.21, which brought sweeping changes to the meta's heroes, reworked primary attributes, and launched a new ranked medal season.
Lifestealer has the largest win rate trend of the patch thus far, with a net +8.69% in the past week. His greatest boon was being one of the handful of heroes who received a +15ms buff. With Boots being percentage on base movement speed, along with the Phase Boots buff (+22% ms, 6 armor, and 18 damage for 1500 gold), he stood to gain as a hero that's heavily countered via kiting. It's also the reason why Ursa, the only Agility hero in the +15 ms group, is currently the 2nd highest win rate hero of 7.21.
The change to attributes--with heroes no longer getting a 25% benefit from primary attributes--has also adversely affected Agility carries, since the stat alone offered damage, attack speed, and armor. Valve appears to be bringing Strength heroes more in line with Agility heroes in this patch. Phantom Lancer fell -2% despite buffs to his talents in 7.21. And Anti-Mage has the second worst fall at -4.6%, with a bug fix to his counterspell. The biggest loser, one week in to 7.21, is Slark at -4.8%, who has his damage from Pounce completely removed.
With the Stockholm Major Qualifiers ending, we already have nine teams in so far. From the CIS region, Na'Vi will be making their first Major appearance, and they'll be joined by Virtus.Pro, who have already clinched their TI9 Shanghai slot. Chaos and Infamous Gaming will represent the South American region, Fnatic and Mineski from Southeast Asia, and China will field three teams: EHOME, Keen Gaming, and PSG.LGD. This week, Europe's qualifier is coming up and is already primed to be a bloodbath in the top bracket, which has NiP vs and Team Liquid vs. Team Secret.
🎙 #Dota2 Announcement— LGD Gaming (@LGDgaming) January 29, 2019
After the conclusion of the #ChongqingMajor, Lu 'Maybe' Yao requested some time off, due to personal and physical reasons.
After internal discussion, LGD Gaming has decided to respect his wishes and approve his application to leave temporarily.
Issues with mental and physical fatigue are as common in esports as its real life counterparts. Even if Dota has a short break for players after TI, there are third party competitive events are just around the corner. The grind has been taxing and arduous enough that we've seen TI champions like the entirety of Team Liquid taking months off, and OG.ana going into hibernation after his TI win last year. Last week, PSG.LGD announced that their mid player, Maybe, will be taking a small break due to "personal and physical reasons." He'll be replaced by XM from CDEC.