Friday, June 23, 2006

Major League Gaming Signs Million Dollar Contracts

Are we there yet? Has pro-gaming truly gone past the tipping point to where it will become world class entertainment?

Major League Gaming, billing itself as the first pro league in video game competition, has announced that is has signed some major contracts with it's star players (is that even normal? what other league signs players, I always thought it was the team owners that signed, or where you had to earn your pro rights like in golf or tennis?). Neglecting the potentially shady dealings (are these guys always going to win the league?, what if they don't?, if they don't how does that affect the sponsorship?), and the fact that the players must now become mouthpieces for the league, this is a major step towards professional video game competitions as a way of life.

Final Boss, the team at the top of the Halo2 league was completely signed (four players) to a three-year million dollar contract, as was Tsquared ($250K contract), another top player from the 2nd place team (why was the rest of his team not signed?). The contracts consist of salaries and sponsorship money. Apparently, MLG also 'manages' a number of other players as well as a player's association (what other league runs it's own player's association?).

MLG also announced that Red Bull will be the official energy drink of the league. I suspect that's what 'fueled' these multimillion dollar contracts.

The tight workings of this league will likely become a major focus of some problems in the future, I guarantee it. I can't think of another 'pro' league with these types of relationships with it's players.

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