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Dota 2

BOOM and Adroit Rise to the Top at ESL One Los Angeles

Patrick Bonifacio

The playoff picture for the Southeast Asian division at ESL One Los Angeles is starting to form, with two of the three pairs of matches now out of the way.


BOOM Esports are now hot on Adroit's heels at ESL One Los Angeles. (Photo courtesy DotaPit)

Both BOOM Esports and Team Adroit survived their matches on Monday and Tuesday, holding off Geek Fam and Fnatic respectively in three games each. Given that they also won their games in the two days prior, this solidifies both squads’ positions as the teams to beat going forward.

Marathon Match

Monday’s matches saw BOOM Esports facing Geek Fam in a hard-fought three game series. Geek Fam struck first in the set, utilizing their Leshrac and Gyrocopter picks to great effect against BOOM’s Phantom Lancer-based draft. Karl “Karl” Jayme and Marc Polo Luis “Raven” Fausto both countered the PL pick very well, carving through the illusion army with ease thus removing a large part of the hero’s damage output.

A decisive teamfight victory at the 25 minute mark allowed them to extend their lead to around 10,000 gold, and from there BOOM Esports was simply unable to approach Geek Fam without risking their lives. About ten minutes later, BOOM took yet another big teamfight loss, forcing them to wave the white flag.

Game two was yet another close fight between the two squads, and was once again another showdown between their core players. Karl played quite well as Shadow Fiend in the middle lane, where he crushed Rafli Fathur “Mikoto” Rahman’s Kunkka. Meanwhile, Randy Muhammad “Dreamocel” Sapoetra played as his signature Morphling, with which he was able to blow key targets up thanks to Ethereal Blade.

Both teams traded blows back and forth throughout the game, with Geek Fam holding the advantage for a large portion of the elapsed time. But it was BOOM that came away with the victory after a trade of four heroes for nothing during the waning minutes, which then allowed them to push for the win.

The third game was a total slugfest that lasted 66 minutes—making it the longest game of the whole tournament so far. A truly intense contest worthy of Southeast Asia’s reputation for kill-heavy games, both teams exchanged teamwipes as if they were playing their last game of Dota 2 on earth.

And although Geek Fam held the early lead thanks to Raven’s incredible performance on Lycan, it was BOOM Esports that closed the game out. Recognizing that Lycan-based lineups need to end games early, they hunkered down and survived long enough to let Dreamocel’s Sven carry them to victory.

This result places BOOM Esports just below Adroit in the standings, as Adroit has one less map loss in comparison. Regardless, BOOM is certainly happy about where they are right now, and will look to continue their success on Wednesday.

Shark-Infested Waters

Adroit are certainly improving their stock as a team in this event, having notched a 2-1 win against DOTA Summit 11 champions Fnatic on Tuesday. Throughout the series, they kept their composure and played like true professionals, despite conceding a somewhat quick loss in the first game.

Game one was a dominant performance by Fnatic, particularly by Daryl “iceiceice” Koh Pei Xiang on his signature Timbersaw. Whirling and buzzing around and being a total death machine, he dealt a ton of damage to Adroit’s lineup, keeping them contained and allowing the rest of his teammates to go to work. And though there was a cardiac moment for them in the early game where they got nearly wiped, they held strong the rest of the game and maintained their advantage.

Adroit then snatched the momentum right out of Fnatic’s hands in Game two by playing a fast tempo style against their opponents’ Lycan and Troll Warlord draft. John Anthony “Natsumi-” Vargas once again piloted Morphling, one of his favorite picks—to great effect as expected.

He and McNicholson “Mac” Villanueva (who played Void Spirit) led the charge for their team, dishing out absurd amounts of damage and dictating the pace of the game. Though Fnatic managed to hold on for a while in the mid game, key teamfight victories going Adroit’s way helped them regain the lead and coast to the win in 35 minutes.

Adroit sealed the deal in the third game, spurred on by Jun “Bok” Kanehara’s incredible Clockwerk play. The experienced offlaner pulled off some of the sickest Hookshots we’ve seen in a while, hunting iceiceice down in the treelines when his Pangolier would escape into the forest.

It also helped that Adroit were able to shut Nuengnara “23savage” Teeramahanon’s Naga Siren early, delaying his farm greatly and preventing him from reaching critical mass before Natsumi-’s Terrorblade could get online. And speaking of Natsumi-, his item build on Terrorblade was incredibly unique and effective, opting to get an early Aghanim’s Scepter to pair with Marvin “Boomy” Rushton’s Puck.

The Dream Coil/Terror Wave combo was too much for Fnatic to handle in the late game, and so they tapped out of the match after 45 minutes.

Adroit’s success so far makes them the favorite to win the division, but they must not relax just yet—for they will face a rising BOOM Esports on Wednesday. Should they ride their rhythm and keep the momentum going, however, we should see them lock up that grand final spot.

The final day of SEA group stage games at ESL One Los Angeles begins tomorrow. Watch the action unfold on the ESL Dota 2 Twitch stream, and follow along with our coverage of the event!