At a price of $2.5 million, Milwaukee Bucks co-owner Wes Edens is buying into the eSports field, according to a report from ESPN.
This has been a notable year for the convergence of sports teams and eSports. In September, the Philadelphia 76ers became the first North American sports franchise to purchase an eSports team, as they acquired the controlling interests in Team Dignitas and Team Apex from owners Michael O’Dell and David Slan, respectively.
Edens is now reported to be entering that territory. as he is acquiring Cloud9 Challenger‘s spot in the League Championship Series. According to ESPN, the price is $2.5 million, a figure that includes the LCS spot and four player contracts:
The deal is pending Riot Games’ vetting process and approval.
The spot alone reportedly is selling for $1.8 million, with player contract rights making up for the remaining $700,000 via buyouts, sources say.
Sources have not indicated what the name or brand behind the team will be. The Bucks and Cloud9 each declined to comment on the deal, and Fortress Investment Group did not respond to a request for comment.
With the purchase, Edens and his group will obtain the contract rights to former Cloud9 players top laner An “BalIs” Van Le, mid laner Hai “Hai” Lam, AD carry Johnny “Altec” Ru, and support Daerek “LemonNation” Hart. Cloud9 Challenger jungler Juan Arturo “Contractz” Garcia is expected to stay with the Cloud9 organization and move to its main LCS lineup.
In addition to his role with the Bucks, Edens has been tied to other developments in sports. David Beckham’s investment group was reported to have courted Edens as an investor for a proposed MLS stadium in Miami earlier this year. Edens, who is also the co-chairman of Fortress Investments, has also been connected to a proposal for a football stadium and adjacent development in Oakland.