I think this provides a really good glimpse into what esports is all about and why it excites me, in a way that is easily understood by anyone.
It's pretty cool that the economist did this actually, I know there are a couple of sports companies that have invested in esports and covered it rather extensively (for example ESPN), but it's nice to see a business magazine do it.
The story covered here is just one of the many stories of dota. Cloud9 had a reputation of being a team who could pull off outrageous maneuvers one minute and then make downright stupid mistakes the next. There were many other stories of various teams in the international 5 as well. CDEC the black horse which came from nowhere and clinched second place. Team Secret, the all star lineup and favourite to win that bombed out of the tournament. Evil Geniuses, another fan favorite whom were almost eliminated by CDEC but came back with a vengeance in the grand finals to take the championship.
In terms of people, BigDaddy is best known for his personality, having quite a fan following. There are so many other stories of the other people too. Sumail the boy wonder. Iceiceice the troll from Singapore. Puppey the legendary captain and so on.
The stories continue season after season. Don't feel sad for BigDaddy. Monkey Business now flies under the banner of Optic Gaming and is one of the most dominant teams now, clinching first place at the frankfurt major (one of the big 4 tournaments yearly). He has found his place.
As for the game itself, well the game is intricate, deep strategy and action packed, I personally find a war simulation a better description than chess on steroids, though I can see why chess is brought up as a reference to the deep strategy aspect. I am glad that it is increasingly getting the recognition it deserves instead of being regarded as 'just another computer game'.
I do hope that it gets more recognition in Singapore, but I expect that will take a long time to come. Singapore focuses alot on education, sciences, business and so on. There is already a lack of focus on traditional sports and the arts. If these already have difficultly finding a footing here, I would expect it would be much harder for esports to have an impact.