The United Soccer League has secured ESPN distribution for the new Rocket League esports competition it has created to help fill the void during the sports shutdown enforced by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The USL eCup: Rocket League Edition is a month-long tournament that will be participated in by 32 teams from across the organization’s professional ranks, in the Championship and League One.
The esports competition will be streamed on the ESPN App and ESPN.com, it was announced. ESPN is the domestic broadcast partner of the USL.
“We are excited our first esports venture will be brought to fans on ESPN’s digital platforms,” said USL senior vice president of digital, emerging technology and strategy Lizzie Seedhouse. “While we can’t wait to see our teams return to action on the field, this tournament will serve as a fun diversion that does a tremendous amount of good in communities across North America.”
The USL Championship and League One seasons are currently suspended until at least May 10 due to the ongoing health crisis.
Numerous sports organizations around the world are leveraging their competitive gaming properties as a means to stay active and relevant in the indefinite absence of live athletic action in arenas and on broadcast channels. They include the National Basketball Association, Nascar, LaLiga, Formula 1, Monumental Sports & Entertainment, IndyCar, and Major League Rugby.