posted by Vekus,
ESL One NY is over! cn Vici Gaming take yet another LAN-final and prove the power of their new squad. Out of this world Sand King play from fy, overall amazing teamplay and execution from the Chinese giant finally allowed them to bring the strong line-up from us EG down, in the best series of this tournament.

Pregame thoughts:

VG have not only brought their A, but their A+ game in the last two days, with amazing performances from everybody. Especially Black^, fy and iceiceice stick out with their recent performances, playing near perfection almost every game.
Bringing back the 4-protect-1 style of Dota, VG have reaniated an old style of Dota nobodys seems to be able to counter anymore, of course it doesn't help that safe lanes get rarely contested these days. With good early rotations as well as disciplined farming, the Chinese team will be hard to beat.

EG haven't played any worse, with a combination of good drafts and stable plays. Once more, they have shown that their gameplan works, distributing more farm to Arteezy than Fear, and trying to protect their midlane.
Generally EG have shown a much more aggressive playstyle than many Western teams, which might come in handy against VG, as they play a similar style. Who will come out on top in the end, is something we can't possibly predict.

Game 1Game 2Game 3 cn Vici vs EG us0:0
Pregameus EG0:0Vici cnThe draft is on and it looks like both teams would be sticking to their guns. A Skywrath Mage+Brewmaster for Vici and a Visage+Nature's Prophet for EG are relatively standard so far. An Elder Titan together with an Ember Spirit sparks up Vici's Draft, giving them a lot of potential in the midgame with good lategame again. EG seems to favour a pushing lineup more, with a Witch Doctor and Lycantrophe as their next picks. A Beastmaster for EG and a Lich for VG round up the draft.2:00us EG0:0Vici cnNot only DDoS seems to plague tournaments these days, as Super's computer drops out and forces a lenghty pause. zai proves to be a big man, as he leaves the Ember Spirit off the hook, despite having an easy first blood due to the disconnect.
5:00us EG1:0Vici cnFIRST BLOOD! VG initiates upon Universe's Nature's Prophet, but he outruns the Skywrath Mage and Brewmaster. As Fear Tteleports in, Skywrath Mage can't retreat fast enough and gets finished with a Soul Assumption.9:00us EG2:1Vici cnBoth teams are contempt to play a rather slow early game to get their core items up and running. Besides two quick ganks, the early games is more focused on maximizing farm. But the action will start soon, as Black^ picks up a Blink Dagger.11:30us EG6:4Vici cnAnd the action STARTS! A prolonged fight takes place first at the top and then the bottom lane. EG get the upper hand and keep the ball rolling, killing three, but then overstay their welcome and lose two in return. THis opens up for an action heavy midgame.
12:30us EG8:7Vici cnVG and EG clash at the bottom runespot. A chainfrost comes through, but can't bring down Zai, buying enough time for the rest of EG to come in. However, the Brewmaster ultimate breaks open the fight, forcing EG back, enabling VG to pick them off one by one.
15:30us EG9:11Vici cnThe Chinese squad pulls ahead, as they manage to catch EG out in the top lane, wiping three of the board while only losing Ember Spirit. Black^ is becoming increasingly dangerous, as he gets a double kill, but so is Arteezy, who is farming uninterupted.20:00us EG9:11Vici cnEG put their pushing lineup to work and force down the top Tier 2 tower. However, VG realises that they are not able to contest and sneak a quick Roshan. A quite even trade, despite VG loses out on map control. Only two Tier 2 towers are left standing for VG.23:00us EG9:12Vici cnA risky play! zai tries to take down VG's courier and nearly succeeds, but it gets away with just 9HP. zai is caught behind enemy lines and gets killed, losing the gem as well.
27:30us EG11:15Vici cnVG smokes and rotates into the middle lane, baiting with Super. As their Tier 1 tower is threatened, EG is forced to react and manage to get two kills, but pay dearly after a good Earth Stomp of iceiceice, losing three.30:30us EG11:16Vici cnEG is resulting to farming and seem content to take this late. VG manage to sneak a quick Roshan and bring doen the Witch Doctor in the process. This is an Aegis for Ember, who has a Battlefury, a Crystalis as well as 1,5k gold on top of that.
33:30us EG14:18Vici cnVG push down the middle lane after quickly eliminating Fear, but EG show that they can push as well, trading Tier 2 for Tier 2. However, as they aren't back fast enough, EG lose their Tier 3 middle tower. EG finally initiates, VG overstays their welcome and get wiped off, after a good initiation by zai.38:30us EG14:18Vici cnEG seem to have taken a site of Alliance's playbook, as they begin to rat VG out. With all lanes constantly pushing in, the Chinese squad can't engage, despite having the higher 5v5 potential, without risking to losing their towers and barracks. Familiars, treants, boars and wolfes are just too much for them.42:30us EG14:18Vici cnVG put their powers of distraction to work again and sneak the third Roshan of the game, giving Aegis to Ember and Cheese to Brewmaster. EG arrive too late and can't do anything but retreat. Still, the siege continues, with EG dodging fights and keeping the pressure up.44:30us EG15:19Vici cnzai gets caught out in the middle lane by Black^'s Brewmaster and immediately VG rotate further down the middle lane. With a DD rune on Ember, they manage to bring down the ranged barracks before being forced back by EG. Universe in the meantime brings down the bottom Tier 3 tower to half health.
48:00us EG17:19Vici cnVG group up once again and push down the top lane. They bring down the Tier 2 tower uncontested and attempt to break highground. However, a good play by ppd's Witch Doctor wiith his Death Word cost them dearly, as EG forces them back.51:30us EG18:24Vici cnEG push their advantages and go for a gank on Super deep in the Dire territory. They bring him low, just one attack away from dieing, but fy's Skywrath manages to save him with a clutch E-Blade. As Ember survives, EG have bitten off more than they could chew and lose four, being forced to buyback.
54:30us EG21:30Vici cnVG groups up yet again at the top lane and push in. EG manage to bring down Black^, but he buys back and teleports back into the fight. A long fight ensues, with tides shifting back and forth, but as Universe dies twice, and with amazing E-Blades saves, VG get the upper hand wiping EG but Arteezy. As they take both barracks, he has no other choice but to go in. Despite he picks up a kill, EG realize that they lost and call the 'GG'.
ENDus EG21:30Vici cnDefinitely one of the best games since this years International, this to say the least. VG started strong, but EG kept up with the pace and nearly managed to finally turn the tides, but a single E-Blade denies that. The game changing moment was when fy saved Super from Arteezy's autoattack, resulting in EG getting wiped out. However, both teams have shown that they are toe to toe with each other, so the next game will be fought even harder. cn Vici vs EG us1:0
Pregamecn Vici0:0EG usThe draft is now underway and Evil Geniuses quickly pick up the Brewmaster, trying to get themselves out of this disadvantageous position. They are opting for a draft with high amounts of magical damage and control, as they've now added Venomancer and Enigma to the unit. We can expect a lot of early aggression from Vici Gaming as they've picked up Skywrath Mage and the Sand King for fy. They will want to keep EG's squad busy while their Anti-Mage, operated by the potent farmer Black^, farms himself to a beastly level. Lycan will be the last addition to the line-up of EG, giving them strong means for pushing towers, along with the Eidalons and the Plague Wards.4:20cn Vici1:0EG usA perfect rotation from Fenrir on the Skywrath Mage pays off with the first blood on Arteezy's Lycan who unknowingly farmed in the middle of the lane.
7:40cn Vici3:3EG usThe early aggression that bursted out of VG's squad served them well in the first 5 minutes of the game. But EG's counterplay came fast and it was ruthless as they quickly picked off the Bristleback in the toplane, they proceeded by diving and picking up another kill, before losing Venomancer to Alchemists Unstable Concoction. The Blink Dagger is now up on fy's SK, 7.40 minutes in.
12:50cn Vici4:4EG usEvil Geniuses' towerpushing has not been working out yet, but what they can do is bring down Roshan and they do it incredibly fast. Vici Gaming knew that they couldn't contest it and simply had to let it go.16:20cn Vici8:11EG usEG has put in the next gear and are playing extremely aggressive fighting nonstop and pushing towers fast. The three tier one towers are now down and Arteezy are looking to push more with his newly purchased Necronomicon. Even though EG are winning the objective gaming right now and the teamfights, Vici are getting pick-offs with the Burrow Strike into Mystic Flare combo. And while there's action i one part of the map, Black^ is on the other side, farming, getting himself and his team closer to the lategame they want.22:20cn Vici9:15EG usWith all the space Vici Gaming is trying to buy for Black^, it makes them a bit vulnerable to the heavy teamfighting from EG with Brewmaster's initiation together with the Black Hole. This proves to be the case in the midlane as EG performs exceptionally and brings down four heroes for none and proceeds to pick up the uncontested Roshan. However, the clock is ticking...
27:10cn Vici12:20EG usSpeaking of farmed heroes, Lycan is farmed too, equipped with Assault Cuirass, Necronomicon level three and Vladimir's Offering. The pushing power of the American squad is immense which became apparent as EG made a ballsy play and went for the highground push. 30 seconds later the toplane barracks were down, Vici weren't prepared and had no chance of reacting in time.
33:44cn Vici14:27EG usTwo fights later Vici Gaming were nowhere near coming out on top, the damage from Venomancer's ult, the Macropyre on top of the Black Hole, while the Shapeshifted Lycan was running around dishing out damage was too much, even for the ridiculously farmed Anti-Mage and fy-god's Sand King. The Chinese squad could not keep up with the snowball of EG's line-up and had no means to counterpush, as the Acid Spray wasn't enough. EG sealed the deal as they took VG on in a 5v5 teamfight in the Radiant jungle, obliterating their opponents. GG was called 33 minutes and 40 seconds into the game and we now move on to our final and deciding game. cn Vici vs EG us1:1
Pregameus EG0:0Vici cnThe drafting has begun and the last game will be without a Brewmaster as EG banned him out in the first phase. Vici Gaming chose to secure their solid Skywrath Mage and Sand King combo that worked incredibly well for them last game, even though they couldn't handle the Lycan. EG keep their pushing pattern and get their hands on Jakiro and Nature's Prohpet as their first two picks. They proceed by getting the Shadow Fiend and Omniknight for the second time tonight and who they ultimately match with Tidehunter. Vici brings out the Invoker, followed by the wise pick-ups Centaur Warrunner and Timbersaw, two heroes who won't be bothered by the Guardian Angel ability. The issue with their setup however, is the lack of a lategame carry. With the draft done, the conclusion is upon us. Let's get into the game!2:00us EG0:0Vici cnThe earlygame have been very passive so far, with the exception of zai teleporting behind the midlane tower with his Nature's Prophet trying to snipe the courier. The midlane is fairly even as Omniknight has been aiding Shadow Fiend to store some souls against the strong laner Invoker. Universe on the first position Jakiro is doing very well and is topping the last hit table.6:20us EG0:1Vici cnFIRST BLOOD! Shadow Fiend went down as Vici rotated their support duo and ganked him as he went for the rune. A clutch save from Omniknight allowed the rotated Tidehunter to escape to safety.9:18us EG1:1Vici cnThe pushing ability of Jakiro becomes apparent once again as him and three of his teammates rotated in to kill off Black^. With the Invoker down the tier one tower was easy prey and melted quickly before the level four Liquid Fire.12:10us EG7:5Vici cnWith the Blink Dagger up and running on fy, VG have started their aggression and managed to get a pick-off on Arteezy once again at the top rune. However, Jakiro's high levels are showing as he rotated together with Omniknight and Tidehunter and completely demolished the VG members, making them pay for killing SF. Not to mention that all three tier one towers are down for the Dire side.
17:00us EG8:8Vici cnVici Gaming are playing the pick-off combination off Burrow Strike, into Mystic Flare and Sunstrike incredibly well and it's what's keeping them in the game, against the great teamfight potential and pushing power of the EG squad. The constant ganking has given Invoker a lot of space and he has picked up a Blink Dagger and a Necronomicon.
You can't run from heaven... or fy23:50us EG13:12Vici cnThe gold and experience lead is in the favor of Vici Gaming at the moment, but the clock is working against them. No matter how fed the Invoker is or how strong the Timbersaw is, the Shadow Fiend equipped with Mekansm and Butterfly is not going to go down while Omniknight is nearby.25:00us EG15:15Vici cnOne of the best and most chaotic fights of the entire tournament take place outside of the Roshan pit, right after Vici brought him down. Evil Geniuses execute their initiation perfectly and brings down Skywrath Mage right away and Centaur soon after. However, as he was equipped with the Aegis of Immortal, he soon was back in the fight and turned the Tide around. Fear fell fast to the insane burst of iceiceice's 11-stacked Bloodstone Timbersaw and Vici Gaming somehow managed to win the fight in the end, three plus an Aegis for four.32:00us EG18:15Vici cnThe advantage that Vici had when it came to team net worth and experience is slowly turning back into EG's favor. After another good fight by EG, this time without the Aegis, they manage to catch Black and Skywrath Mage off guard and they fell immediately. The Sunstrike and two Arcane Bolts brought Arteezy down to below 100 hp and fy went for the kill, but as SF was in the air waiting to take damage from the Burrow Strike, ppd managed to get the Purification off saving his teammate. This allowed the rest of EG to chase him down, making the trade 3 for 0.
40:35us EG21:16Vici cnEG are winning the fights right now and Arteezy is very hard for VG to kill, but the problem for them is that he doesn't deal enough damage yet. The heroes of VG are very tanky, especially the 20,000 net worth Timbersaw. As EG struggles to bring down the tanky front of Vici, Black^ splitpushes and wears down the Radiant base.45:00us EG23:19Vici cnVici are still well in the lead and pulled off a flawless fight against EG, although equipped with double Ravage and Satanic, Butterfly and BKB on Shadow Fiend. Key was the pre-fight pick-off on Omniknight that allowed VG to win quite easily.50:48us EG23:25Vici cnVici managed to carry out yet another breathtaking pick-off on the Omniknight, who didn't have a buyback. This opened up the base and left the four remaining EG members with a big issue at their hands. Black was solo pushing the toplane barracks while the four others divided themselves on the two remaining tier three towers that were still standing. EG had no choice but to initiate and try to defend their remaining barracks and the last chance of earning first place in ESL One NY. Perfect reactions from Black^ allowed him to dodge the unleashed Ravage completely and it only hit Skywrath. The final nail in the coffin of EG was the beautiful Burrow Strike into a three man Tornado from Black^. Vici Gaming played their draft extremely well and utilised every single aspect of it, giving extra kudos to fy-god and iceiceice who played his Timbersaw with great skill. The game was over after 50 minutes and 48 seconds and the only thing left for VG to do, was to rise the trophy.
EG fall to their demise

This article was written by se John Wimarsson, joinDOTA's Senior Writer.Jooehn is a gaming enthusiast who only recently fell head over heels for Dota 2 after watching TI3. If he's not playing his guitar, writing for jD or lying on his couch dreaming about space, he's probably in solo queue trying to reach the 5K MMR dream.Location: Lund, SwedenFollow him on @Jooehn.

This article was written by de Markus Fischer, joinDOTA's Senior Writer. Vekus started to follow Dota rather late, as he joined the community in 2012. From then on he tried to get a job in Esports and found it later at joinDOTA. Reallife is mostly spend at university trying to understand physics and running. Avid wearer of Bandanas.Location: Chemnitz, GermanyFollow him on @VekusDota.