This is why ana has a 93% win rate on Monkey King

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Anathan “ana” Pham’s hero pool is already very broad, but one hero stands out as his absolute best.

As of patch 7.30e, two-time The International champion ana boasts an insane 93.15% win rate on Monkey King. That win percentage comes from 73 games played on his main pub account, which is currently ranked 153rd in Southeast Asia. This represents one of the most successful hero-player combos in all of top-level Dota 2 matchmaking. But what exactly makes ana so good at Monkey King?

While the win percentage is extremely high, Monkey King isn’t even one of ana’s most-played heroes. The melee carry is his 26th most-played hero, directly behind Nyx Assassin and Phantom Assassin. Monkey King does fit his preferred role as a carry, but Dotabuff data shows that ana plays Monkey King in multiple positions in pubs. That versatility makes his astronomical win rate even more impressive.

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For comparison, ana’s old OG teammate Topias “Topson” Taavitsainen’s most successful hero is Earth Spirit with a 62.73% win rate. Illya “Yatoro” Mulyarchuk’s best hero, Ember Spirit, sports a 61.21% win rate. Even among the top level, ana’s monster Monkey King is still a statistical anomaly. His signature pick still has room to grow in the pro scene. The hero-player pairing could make a comeback if the ana to T1 rumors turn out to be true.

ana’s Monkey King is more than a statistical anomaly

There are a couple of reasons why ana wins more than nine out of every 10 games on the simian sultan. The first is that he only picks the hero when the matchup is perfect. In his five most recent MK games, ana got tenth pick. In the one exception, he chose second-to-last in the pre-7.28 drafting order. That ties into another reason the win rate is so high. ana very rarely picks Monkey King. Those five games used as an example took place over two whole years from the start of 2020.

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But any good player can work a win rate up to the 70% range if they only ever play a hero as a counter. ana’s X-factor is his unique take on the hero. Instead of treating Monkey King like a late-core, ana prefers to take an active fighting role from the safe lane. This is evident in both his item builds and average game time. Most of ana’s builds are Echo Saber into either Black King Bar or Diffusal Blade. Most Monkey Kings pick up an early Maelstrom to farm, but not ana. As for game time, the vast majority of his matches are decided by 25 minutes. Most of his losses stretch past 45 minutes. ana’s Monkey King likes to win early and decisively, and he wins that way almost every time he plays the hero.

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