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ESPN, Disney, and NFL agree to multi-year deal to broadcast competitive Madden

Esports is taking over!

Remember when your parents told you that playing video games will get you nowhere? Well, now you will be able to watch people play Madden on TV for a lot of money.

ESPN has shown esports and Heroes of the Storm on its airwaves before, but the network is digging deeper into the vast realm of competitive gaming.

Electronic Arts, ESPN, Disney XD, and the NFL are partnering up to broadcast the Madden NFL 18 Club Championship taking place at the Pro Bowl and Super Bowl. This partnership will also be for broadcasting the brand new Madden Ultimate League that is set to debut in early February.

This agreement is the first-ever long-term, multi-event competitive gaming agreement for the network.

The Club Championship is a tournament with a total prize purse of $403,000 that has the top 32 players each take control of an NFL team.

That team’s roster was assembled by the corresponding player via Madden Ultimate Team salary cap mode. The Madden NFL 18 Club Championship Divisional Finals will air live from the Pro Bowl on ESPNEWS Jan. 27 at 10 p.m. ET. The final will air live at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN2 Feb. 1.

The Ultimate League is a 1-on-1 gaming league made up of 16 elite Madden players from around the world. They will endure a 13-week season that will conclude at Madden Bowl. Disney XD will be airing weekly broadcasts of the Madden NFL Ultimate League.

“We’re thrilled to continue and expand our relationship with EA and the NFL in not only showcasing to our audiences these world-class esports competitions for multiple years, but also using the myriad ESPN and Disney global platforms to tell the incredible stories of these competitors,” said VP of ESPN Digital Media Programming John Lasker in a statement.

This has already been an incredible season for the competitive Madden circuit.

The league produced the EA Madden NFL 18 Challenge, a one-hour esports documentary on The CW that gave a behind-the-scenes look for both Madden fans and people that don’t understand how tough and hectic competitive gaming can get. The documentary followed eight of the best Madden players and their journey to claim the coveted Madden Challenge belt.

This deal is big news for fans of Madden and esports alike. With this news, and the NBA 2K league and Overwatch league making big moves in recent memory, it all but shows that esports are here and they will soon take over.