Overwatch League Tournaments | Where to Place Bets

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Realistically speaking, Overwatch League tournaments are definitely among the most popular esports tournaments these days. In fact, Overwatch itself has been rapidly growing in popularity as well. But which benefited from which? If we are to draw conclusions after looking at the raw stats of the inaugural season of the Overwatch League, our answer would be quite obvious!

With close to 320,000 peak viewership for the Grand Finals match, there's no doubt the Overwatch League Inaugural Season was a massive success. Its success brought the Overwatch League to the next level and made its presence known all over the globe. Thanks to these huge numbers, the biggest international tournament in Overwatch has stirred a lot of dust in the community. And there is still potential for growth, especially with the second Overwatch League tournament already announced.

The thing we are interested in the most, of course, is the viability of Overwatch League in terms of esports betting. The biggest factor here lies in esports betting sites and their willingness to make betting markets for Overwatch League. Even though all the major esports betting sites offered proper Inaugural Season coverage, much more could've been done for the playoff matches. With the hope that this will change in the upcoming OWL (short for Overwatch League), let's turn our focus to our first topic for the day - where to bet on Overwatch League tournaments!

Where to Bet on Overwatch League Tournaments

Overwatch League has already found its way onto the mainstream betting stage. With the most popular bookies pushing its esports presence, things are looking quite good for Blizzard's most popular esports title. Plus, this mixture of FPS and MOBA genres has proven to be as entertaining to watch as it is entertaining to bet on.

So, driven by those words, let's check out our short list of the best esports bookies for Overwatch League betting.

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Key Facts
  • Overwatch League Inaugural Season had a total of 34,800,397 views on Twitch.tv
  • It was among the first esports competitions to introduce the franchising model
  • The first iteration of the Overwatch League had a total of $3,500,000 in prize pool money
  • The second installment is set to feature a total of 20 teams from all over the world

A Brief History of Overwatch League Tournaments

Overwatch League Inaugural Season was a proper spectacle for everyone involved. And we are not just talking about the teams and the organizations behind them, but everyone from the Blizzard Entertainment staff to live audiences, commentators, hosts, analysts, and viewers from all around the world. OWL IS was a true gaming festival, with London Spitfire taking the $1,000,000 grand prize.

london spitfire logo

The grand finals match between London Spitfire and Philadelphia Fusion had around 319,000 peak concurrent viewers on Twitch.tv, with over 22,000 people watching the spectacle live from the gorgeous Barclays Center in New York. So, needless to say, the history of Overwatch League tournaments might be brief, but it has paved the way for a future esports wonder!

All 20 Currently Competing Teams

Here is the list of all 20 teams that are going to compete in upcoming Overwatch League seasons:

  • Atlanta Reign
  • Boston Uprising
  • Chengdu Hunters
  • Dallas Fuel
  • Guangzhou Charge
  • Hangzhou Spark
  • Houston Outlaws
  • London Spitfire
  • Los Angeles Valiant
  • Los Angeles Gladiators
  • Florida Mayhem
  • New York Excelsior
  • Paris Eternal
  • Philadelphia Fusion
  • San Francisco Shock
  • Seoul Dynasty
  • Shanghai Dragons
  • Toronto Defiant
  • Vancouver Titans
  • Washington Justice

Tournament Format

Considering the fact that Overwatch League took the franchising model from popular American major leagues, it's not surprising to see it taking their format, too. With that in mind, let's take a closer look at each stage of this competition so that you can prepare yourself for your betting endeavors once the next Overwatch League tournament kicks off!

Preseason

Each iteration of OWL is set to kick off with the preseason matches. The OWL preseason usually lasts for just a couple of days during which all OWL teams play a series of exhibition matches. The purpose of the preseason stage is not just to create some entertainment for the fans before the actual season kicks off but to see how teams stack up against each other before the final training sessions.

Regular Season

The main part of Overwatch League is the regular season. It is further divided into four stages which usually last for a month or so. All matches count towards the end-season records even though there are team rewards (pretty hefty ones, if we are to be completely honest here) for each particular stage. This makes the regular season even more thrilling during its entirety and not just the last stage in which the post-season scenarios usually unfold.

Playoffs

You can consider playoffs as the business end of Overwatch League. We are talking about a huge esports event with $1,700,000 in total prize pool money. $1,000,000 goes to straight to the winner, which is what both teams and staff of each franchise strive for. Live crowds are cheering for their teams at every step of the way to becoming the Overwatch League winner. But mind you, just like with the NBA, the playoffs in Overwatch League might be the business end of the competition, but they aren't the actual end!

All-Star

To put an exclamation mark on top of the finished season, Blizzard Entertainment hosts an all-star event. All-Star Weekend lasts for two days and brings forth a series of interesting matchups in which the biggest league talents go up against each other for nothing but pride and recognition.

Franchising Makes a Big Difference

Franchising in sports has been made popular by the American major sports leagues such as the NFL, MLB, NBA, and NHL. They remained a standard in America, with Europe and other regions instead basing their professional sports leagues on promotion/relegation systems. Then Overwatch and League of Legends started experimenting with esports franchising systems.

Instead of having to perform consistently well throughout the league in order to stay there for the next season, teams in franchising systems are becoming partners of the league, cementing their spot in the top competition for a certain time period.

Yes, this means they can't fall to a lower-tier competition as long as they're partners with the league. Still, franchises will have to strive for success, as their partnership contracts may not be renewed after several terrible seasons.

Overwatch League Tournaments | FAQ

What sort of betting coverage will the next Overwatch season have?
As far as betting coverage goes, you can expect great things from the next iteration of the Overwatch League. If you are looking for where to bet on Overwatch League tournaments, go back a bit, and you'll stumble upon our top bookie picks for OWL events.
Will these teams change in the future?
As far as betting coverage goes, you can expect great things from the next iteration of the Overwatch League. If you are looking for where to bet on Overwatch League tournaments, go back a bit, and you'll stumble upon our top bookie picks for OWL events.
How big is Overwatch League?
If we compare Overwatch to other esports titles, it falls somewhere on the higher end of the spectrum. It is much bigger than the likes of Hearthstone and Rocket League, but it's still not as big as LoL or Dota 2. However, since the Overwatch League is experiencing massive growth in popularity, perhaps this will all change in the years to come.
Will Overwatch be included in the next Winter Olympics?
During the last couple of years, virtually every single esports title has been suggested for inclusion in the next Winter Olympics. However, most of this news is, as our dear president would say - fake news. While there are esports titles that are likely to be featured at the Olympic Games in the near future, we are confident Overwatch won't be one of them. How come? Well, the principles of the Olympic Games are strictly against any form of violence. Since Overwatch is a game in which you run around killing people with all sorts of guns, weapons, and various special abilities, it is highly unlikely that it will ever be featured at an Olympic event.

A Bright Future

All things considered, Overwatch League's popularity is surely going to make an impact on the entire industry. It has already (directly or indirectly) helped League of Legends NA LCS transform its league into a franchising model as well. EU LCS is heading in the same way, with LEC rebranding and the introduction of franchising across the entire league. And those are just two examples of how Overwatch League's competition model affects other esports.

In terms of betting on Overwatch, the situation is pretty interesting, too. Since we are talking about a relatively new game here, it's safe to say bookies still don't know the ins and outs of it. While this is bound to improve for the upcoming Overwatch League season, it will still be a persisting nuisance for the bookmakers and a proper joy for bettors. Exploiting new markets and being one step ahead of bookies has always been a particularly satisfying trade. And it seems as though Overwatch will be a good place for people who are looking for exactly that!

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