The strongest heroes of the meta are not only determined by the win and the high pick rate, but also by the first banning stage of the draft. In MDL Major 2019, we saw several OP heroes which include: Doom, Drow Ranger, Enigma, Nyx Assassin and Dark Seer. Every single of these have at least 50 bans per tournament, but at the same time, DS and Nyx have a win rate of over 55%. So, it goes without saying that they will be the main candidates to be nerfed in patch 7.22, which will be released before EPICENTER.
In the same list, you can add three more heroes – Nature’s Prophet, Shadow Shaman and Abaddon. Although they were banned less often than the other mentioned heroes in MDL Major. Yet, they were picked more often than other supports of the fifth position. At the same time, Shadow Shaman and Abaddon have a fairly high win rate (65 and 57%), while Nature’s Prophet, only had 51% victories. Yet at the same time the Prophet was the 2nd most picked hero (37 times), only behind Sand King. The popularity of the latter, by the way, is not entirely justified. Since out of the 38 maps on which he was picked, he had less than 50% win rate. Most likely, the teams had no other choice, since the rest of the meta heroes were banned in the first stage of the draft.
As for the Drow Ranger, everything is not so simple. It is the most popular matchmaking pick in the Divine and Immortal ranks, in Paris the hero was also picked or banned in 93% of the games. At the same time, Drow Ranger only won 52% of the matches, which is clearly not the statistic to claim her as an OP hero. The major has also shown that professional teams know how to deal with it, but somehow it gets too much attention in the draft. So, it is quite likely that Valve will be making changes to the hero. By bringing nerfs to the Drow Ranger, the developers will not only help the professionals, but also make ranked games less problematic for other players.
So 7.22 is bound to bring a lot of changes to the game. We might even see a couple of new items getting introduced. Since it will make things all the more interesting and exciting for the EPICENTER and the TI9. Meanwhile, we could see new goals introduced for the Battle Pass since at the time of this writing, it has reached $10,983,236 and the fans will want for motivation to continue investing their hard earned income. Who knows we might even see a new Arcana. We can’t wait to see that which teams will secure the last four slots of the TI, at the same time 7.22 will surely change the meta for the EPICENTER.