Tournament Spotlight: Four key takeaways from 1win Series Dota 2 Spring

1win Dota 2 Series
Image credit: 1win

Earlier this week, Indian esports organisation Entity won its first Dota 2 event since 2022, beating Virtus.Pro to be crowned the inaugural 1win Series Dota 2 Spring champions.

However, alongside Entity’s first victory, there were multiple key takeaways from 1win’s $100,000 (~£78,374) event, ranging from star performances to recognising a growing trend in esports. With coverage supported by 1win, Esports Insider breaks down four key talking points from 1win Series Dota 2 Spring. 

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The watson show

One of the standout performers throughout the entirety of 1win Series Dota 2 Spring was Entity’s Alimzhan ‘watson’ Islambekov. The Kazakhstani player, who is currently ranked first in Dota 2’s World Leaderboard for Europe, was a key component in Entity’s mixed-CIS roster claiming its first trophy since 2022’s Dota 2 Champions League Season 8.

The finals against Virtus.Pro saw watson secure a total KDA of 55/10/34 across the four-game 3-1 victory. Meanwhile on Day 1 of the event, the player racked up a KDA of 10/0/4 against 1win’s own esports division. It wasn’t just watson that stepped up, with all of Entity’s players working well to secure an unlikely tournament win that featured participants such as Team Liquid and Team Spirit.

On social media Entity’s Dzmitry ‘Fishman’ Palishchuk noted the team’s improvements as the organisation looks to now qualify for DreamLeague Season 23 through the Western Europe Closed Qualifier, a qualifier that features 1win Series Dota 2 Spring competitors MOUZ and Team Liquid.

The continued rise of bookmaker-run events

1win joins an ever-growing list of bookmakers that have turned towards esports in recent years. However, as highlighted by the 1win Series Dota 2 Spring, the integration of bookmakers in esports has now gone further than simple sponsorship activations. In the last two years, gambling companies such as Rivalry, Betboom and 1win have entered into the competitive esports scene, particularly through Dota 2.

The trend of bookmakers hosting esports tournaments also looks set to continue with 1win aiming to run additional events and Thunderpick announcing a large-scale CS2 showcase. As more tournaments open up to teams, there are seemingly greater opportunities for organisations, such as Entity, to secure valuable prize pools whilst also creating branding opportunities for bookmakers invested in the space.

The 1win Dota 2 Series CIS caster desk. Image credit: 1win
The 1win Dota 2 Series CIS caster desk. Image credit: 1win

Promising signs for the new MOUZ on the block 

German esports organisation MOUZ is back in Dota 2 following a seven-year absence. However, given that the team was only fully assembled in March 2024, MOUZ was an unknown entity coming into 1win Series Dota 2 Spring. Still, with its European core acquired from Team Tickle (Ulnit, Force, NARMAN and coach ImmortalFaith), the organisation recorded a surprise BO1 victory over The International 2023 Champions Team Spirit during 1win Series Dota 2 Spring’s opening day. 

Unfortunately this momentum wasn’t able to be maintained with MOUZ losing to eventual winners Entity and crashing out of the tournament following a BO3 loss to Team Spirit. Nevertheless, there were promising signs for MOUZ’s return to the game particularly with two of its roster members — Bengan and Supream^ — only on trial with the team. 

Team Spirit and Team Liquid’s rocky performances

Ultimately Team Spirit and Team Liquid had to settle for a third-place match-up on the last day of the 1win Series Dota 2 Spring, a rather surprising development with both organisations considered favourites for the event. Team Liquid finished the tournament in third, claiming $15,000, following a rocky event which saw former TSM player Enzo ‘Timado’ Gianoli sub in for Michael ‘miCKe’ Vu on day two. 

Meanwhile, Team Spirit has yet to hit the ground running in 2024 following the organisation’s 2023 The International victory. The Belgrade-based organisation do have a shot at redemption in the DreamLeague’s Eastern Europe Closed Qualifier and at the upcoming ESL One Birmingham, the latter of which also features Team Liquid and 1win. 

To see how the whole tournament unfolded, Esports Insider has provided recaps for day one, two, three and four of the 1win Series Dota 2 Spring, with coverage supported by bookmaker 1win.

Tom Daniels
Tom has been part of Esports Insider's team since October 2020 and is currently the platform's Editor. When not playing Football Manager, he enjoys reporting on the mobile esports scene as well as the betting sector.

This article is supported by 1win.