ESPN2 confirmed to broadcast #SFVAE World Finals at #EVO2018?
For the past two years since the Evolution Championships were relocated to the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, the Street Fighter V World Finals were shared with the entire world via the ESPN2 network. This marked an incredible occasion where the life pursued by the fighting game community was laid bare for those not affiliated with it.
Unsurprisingly, it appears that this streak will continue for a third year in a row.
Upon taking a glance at this page from the ESPN website, readers will note that an "esports" event has been scheduled to air via the ESPN2 network at 10 P.M. Eastern Time (7 P.M. Pacific) on August 5th. This schedule falls completely in line with when the Street Fighter V World Finals will most likely take place on finals day at Evolution 2018, although a schedule for the event has yet to be finalized.
However, the EVO team has yet to release a statement confirming or denying the renewal of their alliance with ESPN this year. With the event just one week away, the wait for news regarding ESPN should be incredibly short.
Credit goes to Steve Jurek a.k.a. @acekingoffsuit, former writer for Dot Esports, for bringing this information to our attention.
As of now, the only other esports event scheduled for August 5th is Day 2 for Week 7 of the NA LCS Summer Split, which takes place at 1:30 EST and will be shared via the primary ESPN channel.
Along with Street Fighter V, Smash Wii-U also found its way into the spotlight via the Disney XD network during EVO 2017, a move that added life to Disney's spark of interest in the growing industry for esports. However, a broadcasting schedule for next weekend has yet to be released by Disney XD, so it remains unclear if any other games will be televised alongside SFV.
Interestingly, the SFV World Finals were broadcast through both Disney XD and ESPN2 simultaneously last year. While ESPN2 broke 180,000 total viewers for SFV, Disney XD pulled in 101,000 for SFV and a whopping 184,000 for Smash Wii-U. Also noteworthy is that both titles held the highest rating among viewers outside of the 18-49 age demographic, likely due to the younger audience supporting Disney XD.
These numbers don't top those obtained by ELEAGUE's first Street Fighter V invitational, which was broadcast live via the TBS network last year (and again this year), but nevertheless, they were characteristic of an incredibly successful weekend for televised esports last year.
EVO 2018 takes place at Mandalay Bay on August 3-5, 2018. Out of the eight games that make up its lineup, Street Fighter V and Dragonball FighterZ boast the highest numbers of players at around 2,500 apiece, thus setting the stage for two of the most stacked FGC brackets seen in recent years.
For those not registered online, spectators can purchase an event pass on-site.
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