Dota 2's post-TI shuffle in full swing as Alliance, Fnatic release players

Former Alliance midlaner Linus
Former Alliance midlaner Linus "Limmp" Blomdin and former Fnatic offlaner Yang "Deth" Wu Heng during The International 10. (Photos: Fabrizio Belardetti, Saharnaz Farahmand via Dota 2 TI Flickr)

With the conclusion of The International 10 (TI10) earlier this week, this year's post-TI roster shuffle has begun in earnest as Alliance and Fnatic, among others, announced the release of some of their players to revamp their rosters for the next iteration of the Dota Pro Circuit (DPC).

On Thursday (21 October), both Alliance and Fnatic became the first high-profile organisations to be involved in the post-TI10 shuffle after they each released two of their players.

Sweden-based organisation Alliance parted ways with Swedish midlaner Linus "Limmp" Blomdin and Belarusian position 5 support player Artsiom "fng" Barshak, saying that both have been "valuable players and a key part of the organisation" during their time with the team.

Meanwhile, Fnatic released Malaysian midlaner Ng "ChYuan" Kee Chyuan and Singaporean offlaner Yang "Deth" Wu Heng from its Southeast Asian Dota team with the conclusion of their contracts. According to Fnatic, the team has to "evaluate our goals and direction" and "likewise, the players have set their own plans" for the next DPC.

Both Alliance and Fnatic finished TI10 in 9th-12th place with US$800,400 in consolation.

Aside from Alliance and Fnatic, multiple South American teams have also undergone a massive roster shuffle after the region's poor showing in TI10.

Last Saturday (16 October), the roster of Thunder Predator that competed in TI10 parted ways with the organisation and were then replaced by the former roster of NoPing Esports on Wednesday (20 October). On that same day, SG Esports also released the roster it participated in TI10 with.

Thunder Predator and SG Esports were the first teams to be eliminated from TI10 after finishing in the bottom of their groups during the tournament's Group Stage. Both teams exited TI10 in 17th-18th place with US$100,000. Meanwhile, NoPing Esports failed to qualify for TI10 after bombing out of the event's South American qualifier last July.

The competitive Dota 2 scene revolves around TI, Dota 2's yearly world championship tournament that has regularly broken the record for the biggest prize pool for a single esports event year after year. TI10 featured a US$40 million prize pool, with the lion's share of US$18.2 million as well as the coveted Aegis of Champions going to champions Team Spirit.

The yearly post-TI roster shuffles came as a result of the importance of TI to the game's competitive scene, with teams that either failed to qualify or placed poorly in the tournament often revamping their rosters in preparation for another run at the Aegis of Champions.

TI's importance in the scene has even manifested itself in how contracts between players and their organisations are structured, with most contracts ending with the conclusion of TI. This arrangement has allowed both teams and players to explore their options and better prepare for the next iteration of the DPC and TI.

The next DPC is expected to start in December, though Dota 2 developer Valve Software has yet to officially announce its schedule. This year's post-TI shuffle, as a result, is also expected to take place from October until November as rosters become locked shortly before the DPC begins.

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