PITTSBURGH, PA (December 1, 2017) – Longtime esports industry experts Rob Lee and James O’Connor have created Pittsburgh’s premier esports organization – complete with team, tournament venue, and broadcast studio.
Officially launching on December 1st, the Pittsburgh Knights have been active in the gaming world since April of this year, signing players for two major competitive games (Super Smash Bros. Melee and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds). Currently headquartered in Hazelwood, the Knights will host tournaments, live-stream players, and offer the community a place to play, enjoy, and learn about esports.
The popularity of esports (competitive video gaming) has grown exponentially over the past decade and the industry is poised to match more traditional sports in the coming years. This year, according to market researchers Newzoo, esports audiences reached 385 million viewers and revenues have reached nearly $700 million. That number is expected to rise to $1.5 billion by 2020. ESPN, Sports Illustrated and other networks and publications have begun covering games, players, and the industry as a whole. Many major sports franchises such as the Dallas Cowboys and Golden State Warriors have decided to invest in esports teams. Similarly, Amazon recently purchased Twitch.tv, a video game streaming site, for nearly $1 billion.