Eighteen teams will compete to raise the Aegis of Champions at the International 2017. I have chosen 3 of those as teams to look out for at this event; Team OG, Evil Geniuses & Cloud 9. Evil Geniuses have one of the most individually talented rosters in the world, including two players from their International 2015 roster. Arteezy, Suma1l, UNiVeRsE, zai & Cr1t are Evil Geniuses and together they are contenders to win the International 2017.
The Three Ring Circus
Evil Geniuses have had a rough time since the International 2015; their roster melodrama combined with a lack of results made them a laughingstock for most of 2016. Arteezy was already a polarizing figure before he joined Evil Geniuses but following a roster shuffle wherein Evil Geniuses kicked their players from their TI5 winning squad to make room for him he became even more controversial. Once they finally settled on a roster the team slowly gelled together over 2017 and they’ve finally started showing the result that players of this caliber should be capable of. Arteezy and Suma1l both have a number of pocket picks in addition to signature picks they can bring out to win any individual game.
The Great American Hope
Evil Geniuses are the only team from North America with a realistic chance of winning the whole event. This team does not need any cheese picks during the group stage; they don’t need a lucky draw in the knock-out bracket. EG have one of the most talented and stable rosters at the International this year and it would be a disappointment for them to finish any lower than 4th. The biggest issue for this team will probably be their own success. EG need to remember to respect each of their opponents during group play, the group stages are easily the most volatile part of the whole tournament. At some point in their group stage play EG will lose a game, they will either get cheesed, get outplayed or make have a horrific draft. After that loss it will important for EG to have the resolve to move past that initial hurdle and soldier on; they cannot let themselves be crushed under the weight of their own expectations.