NBA Wants A Place In Esports

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In an interview with gamesindustry.biz, Brendan Donohue, managing director of upcoming NBA 2K League, has expressed an interest in getting basketball into the esports scene.

“This is a massive industry and we think we have a place in it, the success of the 2K game and the popularity of the league makes this a logical step for us to take.”

He explains that, unlike the more usual esports like League of Legends, “I don’t think you have to be a fan of 2K to enjoy watching. That’s one of our advantages: the NBA 2K game, and basketball more broadly, are globally recognisable. You can watch having never played the 2K game before and understand what’s going on. That gives an advantage with that more casual audience.”

Donohue talks about how his son gets all his NBA knowledge from playing NBA 2K, and therefore a successful esports scene will feed into the real NBA and vice versa. It will also close the gap between esports and ‘real’ sports, especially as sporting venues such as Madison Square Garden in New York is now a host of esports competitions.