Blizzard Reportedly Gets Major Pro Teams To Buy Into Overwatch League

Overwatch League
Overwatch League Blizzard

In November, Activision Blizzard and Kotick announced plans to begin the Overwatch League . The companies also announced plans to create a minor-league feeder system to the League called the Overwatch Contenders, which will offer players the opportunity to compete for the official League down the line. Creating something like this is a major undertaking and it seems that it is beginning to make serious noise.

On Thursday, ESPN reported Blizzard had secured six agreements for teams in the Overwatch League that will be located in six major cities around the world. The cities are New York, Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Shanghai, and Seoul. The bigger news are the companies who reportedly paid into the Overwatch League.

The Kraft Sports Group, which features New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft at the helm, has been guaranteed the team in Boston. Sterling Equities, the organization that runs the New York Mets, will run the New York franchise under the leadership of Mets COO Jeff Wilpon. Jeff and his father Fred Wilpon were among those who were involved in the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme scandal and had to pay Madoff victims $162 million.

The two other spots for the U.S. teams reportedly belong to esports veteran teams Immortals, which is funded by Memphis Grizzlies co-owner Stephen Kaplan and Linkin Park venture capitalist fund Machine Shop ventures, and NRG Esports, created by Sacramento Kings owners Andrew Miller and Mark Mastrov with recent investment by Shaquille O’Neal. These teams will handle the Los Angeles and San Francisco teams, respectively.

The news comes after a previous story from ESPN reported some major organizations were hesitant to get involved with the new league because of the $20 million buy-in asking price. It was also reported that revenue sharing amongst teams in the league would not begin until 2021 and that if any team were sold, Blizzard would receive 25 percent of the sale.

With the Overwatch League set to begin, along with the NBA2K League scheduled to start in the fall, it should be a fascinating next few months to see who else gets involved with esports has it continues to become a major part of gaming and sports.

What are your thoughts about the Overwatch League? Let us know in our comment section.

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