Esports are coming to ESPN. Overwatch League will still be broadcast on Twitch, so don't freak out if that's where you love to watch.
The multi-year deal will bring the Overwatch League playoffs, the OWL grand finals, the Overwatch World Cup and next year's Overwatch League Season 2 to the networks.
While the deal focuses on live and full replays of Overwatch competition and recap show on ABC, there is a broad swath of digital rights that the networks "plan to take full advantage of", according to Lasker.
John Lasker, vice president of digital media programming at ESPN, said they are turning the corner here in terms of their interest and engagement in the esports category.
For the immediate moment, that's going to lead to quite a bit of coverage of the Overwatch League playoffs, which begin Wednesday with quarterfinals at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Overwatch League's season one finals held at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York later this month and season two of the Overwatch League next year are also included in the deal. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The buy-in for each of the first 12 franchises - which span the globe from Shanghai to Seoul, Los Angeles, Dallas, New York, Philadelphia, Boston and London - was $20 million.
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The Overwatch League has enjoyed success in its first season.
Media partners are another very important partner in [the Overwatch League] ecosystem. That might include highlight packages for ESPN digital platforms or even supplemental content catered toward fans who might not be as familiar with Overwatch. The championship will be broadcast from the Barclays Center in NY, where both days are sold out.
The OWL had been streaming all matches on Twitch, a livestream platform owned by Amazon, and it will continue to provide simulcasts there through at least 2019.
After a couple of years of preparation, Overwatch League began play in January with 12 teams representing different cities in the USA, the United Kingdom, South Korea, and China, $20 million franchise fees, and ownership groups involving NFL figures like Robert Kraft and Stan Kroenke, plus Comcast and a Mets' sister company.
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At the same time , it has been impossible to confirm the security and location of 78 others, " Suga told a news conference. Public broadcaster NHK TV showed overturned cars on roads covered with mud and buildings with water nearly up to rooftops.
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