Birthday: December 30th, 1989
Nationality: Ukrainian
Role: Middle
World Rank: 27
Earnings: 765.866
Winrate: 60%

Danil „Dendi“ Ishutin Player Profile

Dendi, The Face of Dota.Image credit: Dota 2

Personal Info and Team Orientation

Danil „Dendi“ Ishutin was born in Lviv, Ukraine on December 30th, 1989. As the son of a piano teacher, his early day years were full of music and dance. Danil’s family didn’t have much money, but with the help of his grandmother, they bought Dendi his first PC in 1997. Dendi was simultaneously hooked by the PC games. As well as the vast population of kids his age, Dendi started growing his love of gaming with countless hours at the computer, playing Counter-Strike and Wc3.

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Unfortunately, his father died of cancer while he was still at a young age. This pushed Dendi even further into gaming, devoting even more time to the PC, to cope with his loss. Dendi’s words on his loss: „It’s like destructor. It was like a start time actually, and that’s maybe one of the reasons why I’m playing now. Maybe I wouldn’t play at all“. As his skills started to grow, he began to participate, and win some local Wc3 tournaments, gaining a thirst for competition, and drive to be the best.

In no time, Dendi discovered DotA, and as it was for most of us, it became his obsession. And not long after, he’d taken his first steps down the road of eSports. At only 17 years old, Dendi quickly gained popularity within the DotA community. He was spotted as one of Ukraine’s rising talents in the competitive scene.

Image credit: The International

In 2010, Dendi stepped up his game. He joined Natus Vincere, also known as Na’Vi, on Christmas day. Dendi and Na’Vi were a perfect match. One of Ukraine’s brightest talents, joining Ukraine’s most prestigious eSports organization. Dendi’s arrival sparked Na’Vi into domination right from the get-go. They demolished all the best known Dota 2 teams who stood in their path, and it was only the beginning.

With Valve introducing us to its first ever International in 2011, speculations were endless. Just from believing that the prize pool would be around $50.000, thrown the community into a frenzy. Then the news came – „Sixteen teams around the world would be competing for $1.600.000.“ – the largest prize pool in eSports history. Already one of the strongest teams in Dota 2, Na’Vi received an invite to The International 2011. With so much on the line and every single best team from around the world, everyone knew this was no child’s play.



But as it turned out to be, Na’Vi losing only 1 game during The International, proved to be the best and took home the grand prize. The money and all the fame that came with it further bounced Dendi into the spotlight, making him a worldwide sensation, and the community favorite. Aside from his fans loving his goofy attitude, Dendi formed his reputation as an elite player with outstanding individual skill, and innovative picks and builds. Dendi was the one to push The Blink-Force Push meta on almost all Dota 2 champions, and his signature Pudge is legendary to this day.

Dendi's favorite pick of all.Image credit: Dendi

Na’Vi and Dendi’s unstoppable dominance in the first full year was unquestionable. Five 1st places on premier events, made them as a clear contender to defend their title at The International 2012. On the beginning, Na’Vi came to a semi-start, managing a record of 8 to 6 in the group stages. However, when it came to the main event, Na’Vi didn’t disappoint. Fighting their way through the lower bracket, Na’Vi reached the grand finals of the tournament. Throughout the event, Dendi showed staggering performance on his Rubick, Puck and, Queen of Pain, without losing a midlane in each and every game.

But unfortunately, Na’Vi lost to Invictus Gaming in the grand finals 1 to 3. This didn’t stop Dendi from making Na’Vi the pride of his carrier, as the team won six more tournaments in the final 3 months of 2012. Even in the 2013 roster change, Dendi stayed loyal to his team. By securing ten 1st places on minor events, and 3 consecutive 1st places on primer events during the year, Dendi got his team an invite to The International 2013.

 

Na’Vi finished their group stages as first and winning almost all best of 3’s. Unfortunately, they lost in the upper bracket finals to their dreaded rivals, Alliance. But Na’Vi didn’t falter. Climbing back up through the series of lower bracket, Na’Vi came for their second shot versus Alliance in the grand finals. The show-off began with Na’Vi taking the lead 2 to 1, leading the crowd in speculations of an easy finish 3 to 1.

Alliance then fought back, winning the game 4, which would lead the tournament to its first ever legendary game 5. It all came to this. Only 1 game separated the two teams from winning the grand prize of 2 million dollars.

The 5th clutch match between bitter rivals.Image credit: The International

From the beginning of the game, Dendi was beast-like on his Lanaya. Cutting Alliance’s team members like butter, he scored twice the triple kill until minute 14. It seemed as Na’Vi had it in the bag until one of their biggest mistakes took place. But just before they were about to do the final push, Alliance went for backdoor. With panic coming over them, Na’Vi quickly rushed back to the base but did not expect S4 from Alliance to stop two teleports for Na’Vi, which, resulted once again to „so close – so far“ for Na’Vi. Next few years were more of the same for Na’Vi. While Dendi still occasionally turned heads, the team struggled and rarely made deep runs at events.

They tried everything. Multiple roster changes, bringing in veteran faces, and rookie talent-alike, but nothing ever seemed to click. On October 16th, 2015, after failing to qualify their first vast Major in Frankfurt. Na’Vi released its entire roster. However, Dendi’s loyalty for Na’Vi would show through. He wouldn’t have given up the team, that had given him so much. Only 4 days later, Na’Vi confirmed that Dendi would return to the team, and would lead a brand new team into 2016.

For longest period of his carrier, Dendi was loyal to the ones who gave him the most.

Danil „Dendi“ Ishutin is kind of a player, who besides incredible skill and dedication, showed us that loyalty to the ones who helped us achieve our goals is as much as important.

Team Role

Throughout his life of playing Dota, Dendi was immediately hooked up by the most challenging role the game had to offer, and from what we can see in the passing decade, he’s definitely worth it.

Midlane

His passion for the 1v1 duel, map control and pure dominance throughout the game was obvious to see from his early DotA days. With his vicious laning mechanics and outstanding map awareness that allows him to be at the right place at the right time, Dendi is known to be the best at what he does.

His signature Pudge is yet to be matched.

The one who is always himself - Dendi-mon.What?

Accolades

  • On August 21st, 2011, Dendi and his team Na’Vi won the first ever International on the Dota 2 pro scene.
  • By the year 2012, Dendi received the title from the community as „The Face of DotA“.
  • On The International 2017 Dendi went 1v1 versus OpenAI and lost miserably.

 

  • Danil „Dendi“ Ishutin Player Profile Team Mates
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