LGD Gaming Ousted from Dota 2 The International After 12-Year Streak

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The end of an era has dawned for Dota 2 fans as the Chinese Dota powerhouse, LGD Gaming, saw its unbroken attendance streak at The International series come to an end. This came after a defeat against Team Turtle in the lower bracket of the TI 2024 China Qualifier yesterday.

With Team Turtle featuring two LGD legends, Lu “Somnus” Yao and Yang “Chalice” Shenyi, the loss wasn’t entirely unexpected. However, it was undoubtedly disappointing for long-time fans who have followed LGD since TI 2012. Until yesterday, LGD had participated in every iteration of TI, always considered a team to beat.

Both teams entered the TI 2024 China Qualifier after a competitive hiatus, albeit for different reasons. LGD had put their Dota 2 division on hold in March due to a series of disappointing results and bounced to secure a spot in the DreamLeague S23 and PGL Wallachia qualifiers but fell short. They redeemed it with a victory in the Riyadh Masters China Qualifier last month, earning a spot in the Esports World Cup 2024.

In contrast, Somnus and Chalice took an extended break after last year’s TI, returning earlier this month for the qualifiers. They joined forces with other Chinese Dota veterans, Yu “Fantasy” Yajun and Zhou “Yang” Haiyang, alongside LGD’s inactive player Lin “Planet” Hao.

Before facing Team Turtle, LGD clashed with Azure Ray in a thrilling upper bracket semi-final. Despite a valiant effort that saw them equalize the series, a costly mistake in the deciding game dropped them to the lower bracket.

Having seen their potential, many thought LGD had a shot against their former legends. However, it was merely a wishful thinking as Chalice and Somnus delivered a crushing defeat in game one, wrapping it up in just 31 minutes. The domination continued in game two, with Turtle ending LGD’s dream with a 30-minute thrashing.

While LGD has been eliminated from the TI 2024 qualifier, there remains a slim possibility for them to enter the event via acquisition. Here is how it works: should Turtle reaches the finale, LGD could theoretically sign the entire team, considering the former operates as an independent club. However, given LGD’s strained relationship with their former stars, such an agreement seems highly unlikely.

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