essays and pithy thoughts


in glhf

The only sports team to live a completely nomadic life, and make it sustainable, has been the Harlem Globetrotters. At least as far as I can think of.

But we can do it, right? Travel to every event, with a ten percent chance of making that back through prizes, if we’re being generous. No worries, the sponsors will pay for it.

Maybe we can Darwin our way through, chalking up team flameouts to weakness of resolve and aptitude. On the surface, it may seem the promotion-relegation systems of football in Europe are doing much the same thing; rarely a month goes by without hearing a team of some stature reporting face-melting losses or money problems brewing.

Difference is, they typically don’t fold quite as quickly, because their benefactors are loooooaded. But let’s not delude ourselves, people don’t own sports teams as a convenient way to quickly dispose of burdensome cash. It’s not just a status symbol, like a yacht.

An esports team blows through a couple few hundred thousand dollars and can’t bring back even half of it? Even a tenth of it? Damn right they’re folding, and they’re not the exception.

Yea, there will be some winners, because someone has to win. It doesn’t excuse the rest of the goings-on. Really, we can’t expect much better, not when everyone fighting the battle for fiscal survival is doing so without a fortress. Esports is a turf war of global scale, where everyone calls the internet home.

You can’t all be the home team.

Less hype, less expense, more frequent, more local. Give a town many evenings of lightweight entertainment, rather than blowing in for one ridiculous weekend every few years, doing so really just to produce a video feed, making the locale practically irrelevant. Become part of a community, many times over in many different places.

I’ll keep saying it ‘till we get it, because it’s really the only way to generate stories like this. Even the most prolific of global sports properties, which are anomalies themselves if we’re being honest, all started from humble non-global beginnings, working regional rivalries towards a solvent business; and they still have their home today (which they obviously still pack to the gills on match day).

It’s all been done before, but we’d rather not. Why? I really don’t know. A desire to be absolutely separate from the world of traditional sports in every way?

This debate in two tweets:

← This week in esports Nomadism, continued →