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Inaugural Overwatch League ‘home’ games hit by power outage

The Overwatch League’s inaugural Homestand Weekend was hit by a regional power outage early on Saturday, which delayed proceedings by an hour.

While the blackout at the Allen Event Center in the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area was not the organisers’ fault – and did not affect the event too badly – it was extremely unfortunate in its timing.

Team Envy, owners of host team Dallas Fuel, said in a statement: “Equipment failed at a substation in Allen that services the Allen Event Center, Courtyard Marriott, as well as many restaurants and businesses in the surrounding area. The city of Allen had power back up and running within minutes, and operations staff then completed a reboot of all security, gameplay and production equipment to ensure systems were operating properly in the venue.”

The event marked the first time that regular-season Overwatch League games were played outside of the Blizzard Arena in Burbank, California. The Homestand Weekend was a sell-out, with approximately 9,000 fans – 4,500 on Saturday and Sunday – attending.

As part of a partnership with Anheuser-Busch, there was a special Bud Light watch bar, as well as multiple Bud Light-themed activations at the Allen Event Center. The beer was also integrated into broadcasts.

Mark Coughlin, the chief revenue officer at Envy Gaming,  told SportBusiness in January that he was “hopeful” of making money from the weekend.

The Atlanta Reign and Los Angeles Valiant will also host matches in July and August respectively, with all franchises playing home and away games from 2020.