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Volume 26 No. 5
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NBA Kings Investor Believes Golden 1 Center Is Perfectly Equipped To Host Big E-Sports Events

NBA Kings investor Andy Miller believes the team's Golden 1 Center "will be perfect" for e-sports, as the $507M arena will "have 1,000 Wi-Fi access points from Ruckus for 17,500 seats and an 84-foot-long 4K video board," according to John Gaudiosi of FORTUNE. Miller: "We have Wi-Fi technology from Qualcomm (thanks to Kings co-owners Paul and Irwin Jacobs) that’s not even out there yet. This arena is going to be maxed out. We should be playing eSports tournaments there." Gaudiosi noted Miller got into the e-sports last year, "founding NRG eSports" with Kings investor Mark Mastrov, among others. The outfit "now includes a League of Legends team and a Counter-Strike: Global Offensive team, with plans to further expand into competitive gaming, including mobile games." Now Miller "hopes to grow NRG eSports, and the pro gaming industry as a whole." Miller: "The early days of eSports looked a lot like the early days of the ABA and the NBA, where you originally had the owners of these teams as players who developed and brought the sport along. And now you’re seeing folks with more of a business background or traditional sports background or marketing background, trying to [take] eSports to the next level by raising money, getting investors, and being able to professionalize the organizations." He added that e-sports "still needs to have traditional sports companies such as Under Armour, Adidas, and Nike come in and design cool jerseys and clothing." He said, "Right now what the players wear is a cross between cycling and NASCAR. But we sell a lot of t-shirts and hats" (FORTUNE.com, 3/22).