Two-time TI champ Ceb: Team Secret's Puppey is the Dota 2 G.O.A.T.

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Former OG offlaner and two-time The International champion Sébastien “Ceb” Debs thinks that Dota 2's Greatest of All Time is not him or one of his fellow two-time champions, but instead Team Secret captain Clement
Former OG offlaner and two-time The International champion Sébastien “Ceb” Debs thinks that Dota 2's Greatest of All Time is not him or one of his fellow two-time champions, but instead Team Secret captain Clement "Puppey" Ivanov. (Photos: Dota 2 TI Flickr)

Former OG offlaner and two-time The International (TI) champion Sébastien "Ceb" Debs shared his thoughts on the Dota 2 Greatest of All Time (G.O.A.T.) debate, saying his pick would be Team Secret captain and TI1 champion Clement "Puppey" Ivanov.

“If I had to name a G.O.A.T, I’d probably name Puppey. That’s how I feel. I started Dota, he was already Puppey, you know. Truly man," Ceb said in a recent Twitch stream with Max "qojqva" Bröcker, where he bared his thoughts on some of his fellow Dota 2 greats.

Ceb branding Puppey as the Dota 2 G.O.A.T. isn't a hot take, as the 32-year old Estonian captain is one of the most experienced and decorated players in the history of the game.

Puppey was among the first players to have their names carved into the Aegis of Champions when he won the first-ever iteration of TI back in 2011 with Natus Vincere (Na'Vi). He would lead Na'Vi to back-to-back second place finishes in TI2 and TI3 before leaving the organisation in 2014 to found Team Secret.

In his eight-year tenure as the captain of Secret, Puppey has amassed four Major championships and two Top 4 finishes in TI, most recent of which was a third place finish at TI10.

Puppey also holds the distinction of being the only player to have competed in every single iteration of TI thus far.

Despite being a legend of the game himself, Ceb said he would "fanboy" over Puppey when he first started his Dota 2 career.

"I would meet him, and I was like, “Holy ****, it's Puppey.” He was already Puppey, he was already crushing everybody, winning every tournament and stuff. This guy is a legend,” added the two-time TI champion.

What gives Puppey the edge in the Dota G.O.A.T. debate for Ceb is his sustained excellence over an 11-year career.

The Estonian captain entered the game as one of the very best support players and captains in the world, a position he has not relinquished to this day.

“Puppey is so good. He is so skilled as [a position 5 support player], it’s crazy. And also, he has never been carried," said Ceb.

"What I mean is that a lot of players at some point start being a little worse but it doesn’t show as much because they are so smart about the game. But for him, he is smart about the game of course, but he never got carried, he is delivering just every game. It’s crazy.”

Secret not using SumaiL and iceiceice correctly

But while Ceb sang Puppey's praises, he did not shy from critiquing Secret's current underperformance in the 2021-2022 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) Spring Tour.

Despite being led by Ceb's pick for the Dota 2 G.O.A.T. and having one of the most stacked rosters in the circuit, Secret only managed a 3-4 record in the Western European regional league and will thus miss out on the Stockholm Major.

Ceb thinks the reason why Secret has been so underwhelming is that they have not correctly utilised the skillsets of carry player Sumail "SumaiL" Hassan and offlaner Daryl "iceiceice" Koh Pei Xiang.

SumaiL and iceiceice joined Secret last November to replace Ludwig "zai" Wåhlberg and Lasse "MATUMBAMAN" Urpalainen, who both left for Team Liquid.

While SumaiL originally joined Secret to be their midlaner, he has since relinquished the role to Michal "Nisha" Jankowski and shifted to playing carry.

Ceb, who notably played his last tournament in TI10 with SumaiL, thinks that the latter is better utilised as a midlaner.

“SumaiL is a great player. I don't think he should be carrying. And I've played with him carry a lot, I don't think he should carry. I'm not saying he's not good enough for that. There are a lot of reasons for that. His mid is still one of the best but I think he's confused when he plays carry. Like he overthinks and I don’t think he should play carry,” said Ceb.

The former OG offlaner also said Secret aren't playing around their own offlaner correctly.

Ceb felt Secret should copy how Vici Gaming played around iceiceice, who played with the team from 2014 to 2016 during his three-year stint in China.

“I think iceiceice's prime was with China because China is so disciplined. They don't think selfishly, so they would just punish. It was a long time ago, but I remember even when he was playing in Vici Gaming, they would punish," said Ceb.

"Iceiceice is this Timber who is doing some dumb ****. You go on him because you are like 'What the **** is he doing?' And his team is there, and you lose the game. With Secret, you just go and you kill him for free and they are not reacting. He can be top net worth and then he dies twice and then the game is just done. I don't know if I want to put the blame on him.”

Those aren’t all the opinions Ceb shared on stream, Dota 2 fans interested to hear more from the two-time TI champion can find the full VOD here.

Otomo is a long-time gaming enthusiast and caster. He has been playing games since he was 10 and is the biggest Dota 2 fan.

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