In many ways, he’s a lot like other professional athletes. He spends countless hours honing his craft, jet-setting to far-flung venues to play in front of large, boisterous crowds. He signs autographs and takes selfies with admiring fans. But this is no conventional sportsman playing a conventional sport. This is Cormac “Doolsta” Dooley. Only 18 and not even out of high school yet, he’s part of a growing industry — once derided by some parents as a mindless waste of time — that has quickly exploded into a global, lucrative profession: esports. “Even if you win one $50K tournament, that’s pretty much some people’s wages for a year. So there definitely is a lot of money to be made,” Dooley said. A Spectator Spectacle Cormac “Doolsta” Dooley Competitive gaming has become so profitable in recent years that large media companies are getting in on the act.
Comcast Spectacor will announce Monday that it will build a dedicated esport stadium in the heart of the South Philadelphia Sports Complex. The 3,500-seat, $50 million Fusion Arena will play host to local professional team Philadelphia Fusion — already owned by Comcast Spectacor. “This will be the first ground-up [esports] facility in the western hemisphere,” Spectacor Chief Business Officer Joe Marsh said. The 60,000 square-foot arena also will feature a training facility and represents another revenue stream in the ever-expanding competitive gaming ecosystem. For a city like Philadelphia, an arena will likely mean added revenue, said Robert Johnson, the chief marketing officer for N3rd Street Gamers, a Philadelphia-based company that’s taking advantage of a hole in the still-developing esports market. Just for the […]
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