Fans around the world unite once per year to celebrate Dota 2 and the idols playing at The International. No other tournament matches the excitement that TI brings to the Dota 2 scene. From fans, to amateur and professional players, everyone wakes up every morning with the hope that one day they will be able to play on the TI stage. For a whole year, the best of the best play a cutthroat game, as the TI5 champion ppd often calls the Dota 2 pro scene, for a shot at reaching the Main Event of The International.
This past season has been a nightmare for the Southeast Asian team TNC Predator. In November 2018 their captain at that time, Carlo “Kuku” Palad made a terrible mistake by insulting the Chinese community.
He’s been the first player to be punished by Valve themselves for using a racial slur. He’s been banned from a Dota Pro Circuit Major, he was black-listed for entering Chongqing and couldn’t join his team at WESG 2018-2019, which wasn’t even a Valve sanctioned tournament, he’s been fined by the organization and demoted within the team, but it seems that the Chinese community never forgets and never forgives.
Despite all the drama, TNC qualified for The International 2019 via Dota Pro Circuit points and are now already in the Main Event. This year the TI is held in Shanghai, China and although many expected the crowd not to cheer for TNC, they actually got booed at during the opening ceremony.
TNC was the only team to get a negative reaction from the fans present in the Mercedes Benz Arena in Shanghai. The main event kicked off at 10:00 in the morning local time when the venue was already packed as the two biggest Chinese teams had scheduled their upper bracket quarterfinals on Day 1. After PSG.LGD took a quick 2-0 victory over Virtus.pro, Vici Gaming walked onto the stage to play against TNC. Once again the arena roared when their favorite team entered the stage, only to go dead silent a moment after and start booing when TNC Predator was introduced by The International 2019 announcer.
Hopefully, regardless of the result of the still undergoing series in Shanghai, the Chinese fans will tone it down a bit and applaud the good plays.