Team SMG Add Team Secret Coach Heen

08 Oct 2023
Tit Krajnik 08 Oct 2023
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  • Team Secret's coach Lee "Heen" Seung Gon will lead Team SMG at The International 2023
  • Heen is the second temporary member Team SMG acquired for TI12
  • The news come just a day after Team SMG Nigma Galaxy's Ivan "MinD_ContRoL" Ivanov as a stand-in
Lee "Heen" Seung Gon (credit: via Twitter (@TeamSMGofficial))
On Sunday, October 8, 2023, Team SMG announced another major change to its Dota 2 roster ahead of The International 2023. As confirmed by the Malaysian team, Team SMG added Team Secret's coach Lee "Heen" Seung Gon, who will be coaching the squad at TI 12.

Team SMG announced the news via a Twitter post, thanking Team Secret for allowing Heen to join their team for the duration of The International 2023. The news comes just a day after the addition of Nigma Galaxy’s Ivan "MinD_ContRoL" Ivanov as a stand-in and replacement for Natthaphon "Masaros" Ouanphakdee, who was unable to obtain a visa to travel to Seattle.

Even though adding members temporarily is rarely a beneficial move, Heen joins Team SMG as one of the most experienced coaches in the scene. Moreover, the fact that Team SMG didn’t have a coach before, Heen can be considered an excellent addition to SMG and a big boost for their chances to leave a mark at the season-culminating event.

Heen is a retired Dota 2 player who has spent the last seven years as a coach. He started his coaching career at Team Liquid in 2016 and quickly found success. With Team Liquid, Heen won EPICENTER 2017, The International 2017, placed second at DreamLeague Season 8 and EPICENTER XL, and finished The International 2018 in fourth place.

In 2019, Heen joined Team Secret, with who he won DreamLeague Season 13 and helped the team produce deep runs at the last two Tis, with a bronze medal from TI 2021 and a runner-up finish in 2022.

Even though it’s unclear how Team SMG will do with a stand-in player and a coach, the additions of MinD_ContRoL and Heen are undeniably positive. Still, Team SMG will have a mountain to climb at TI12, where they’ll have to face off against some of the world’s top Dota 2 teams, such as Team Spirit, Gaimin Gladiators, Team Liquid, Tundra Esports, and BB Team.

The International 2023 kicks off on October 12, 2023, and will run until the grand finals, on October 29.