Overwatch League Teams Aim To Move To Their Respective Cities By 2020
The Overwatch League intends to move team franchises to their respective home cities and start traveling to these cities by 2020, league have stated. This will most likely take place in the year 2020 during Overwatch League’s third season.
All current games are held in Blizzard Arena in Burbank, California.
Travel for the League teams has not been decided, but one idea that has been discussed internally is a roadshow that would have all teams in a division travel to a city at once, essentially touring regions of the world, according to sources.
This means that the Pacific Division teams would travel through the Midwestern United States, the West Coast of the United States and then through Asian cities. Atlantic Division teams, would travel through the East Coast of the United States then to the European region. Both Pacific and Atlantic divisions are split in half by Texas, where Houston plays in the Atlantic Division and Dallas plays in the Pacific Division.
“We look forward to announcing details on the Overwatch League’s format for later seasons in the future. Together with our teams, we are evaluating a range of format options to realize the full potential of our global league. Based on the tremendous response we’ve seen from fans in local markets, including the growth of local supporters’ clubs and Overwatch League watch parties all over the world, it’s clear that there’s a high demand from fans to connect with Overwatch League teams in their home markets, and our goal has always been to move to a home-and-away format as soon as possible.
– Nate Nanze, Overwatch League Commissioner
The Overwatch League intends to have a total of 18 teams by the end of this summer to begin competing in the second season in 2019, Blizzard said. It will look to add a total of six across three regions, North America, Europe and Asia. Activision Blizzard esports leagues CEO Pete Vlastelica mentioned that the league is discussing with potential buyers in Paris, Amsterdam and Berlin, as well Scandinavia.
Franchise prices during this round of expansion range from $30 million to $60 million with the ultimate goal being 28 teams in total across the world, according to Nate Nanzer.
Philadelphia Fusion ownership Comcast Spectacor, Boston Uprising owner the Kraft Group and New York Excelsior ownership the Wilpon family all have venues in their local areas. The Los Angeles Gladiators ownership Kroenke Sports & Entertainment are in charge of building the Los Angeles Stadium at Hollywood Park, and just outside of Dallas in Arlington, Texas, investors of the Houston Outlaws and Dallas Fuel are looking to remodel the Arlington Convention Center into an esports arena.
Teams are exploring partnerships as potential options for their home locations. In April, NRG Esports, the parent of the San Francisco Shock, partnered with University of California at Berkeley, about 30 minutes outside of downtown San Francisco.
Only one has announced its official venue, the Los Angeles Valiant, who will play at the Microsoft Theater at LA Live in downtown Los Angeles.
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