Esports may soon be considered an extreme sport. On October 26th, MSP Sports Capital announced that it had acquired a majority ownership stake in The X Games from ESPN.
This move will see MSP bring on Steven Flisler as the event’s new CEO. Flisler previously served as the Vice President of original content at Twitch. He also used to be the executive producer of Twitch Rivals.
During a conversation with The Verge, Flisler admitted that he can’t share any plans yet about the future of the games. Although, he did say the company is “excited to integrate competitive gaming into The X Games brand, especially at our live events.”
That’s not the only interesting piece of news to come out of this acquisition deal. MSP also seemed to hint at the idea of giving fans a new way to watch the events live online, specifically through Twitch and YouTube. MSP explained that bringing the games to these platforms will “increase appeal to a digitally native audience.”
And, if that wasn’t enough, it was also announced that skateboarding legend Tony Hawk would be brought on as a brand ambassador for The X Games!
Founded in 1994, The X Games is an annual extreme sports competition that is broadcast on ESPN. The next X Games competition series will be held in Aspen, Colorado from January 27th, 2023 to the 29th.
The Profit‘s Take:
I don’t know anything about The X Games. However, I was under the impression that extreme sports are the polar opposite of esports. I can’t name one sport from The X Games… biking down a mountain? This would be an AMAZING YouGov study. After thinking about it though, the sponsorship angle makes this make sense. Gaming has all the energy drink sponsors. I am sure extreme sports fans consume those same exact products. I wasn’t sure about this at first, but the overlapping sponsors between esports and X Games makes this a potentially interesting activation.