Athlete injuries and betting patterns show sports and esports aren’t so different

By William Davis


Apr 6, 2022

Reading time: 2 min

There’s always been a lot of chat about regarding esports and whether it’s hit the mainstream. Either way, the simple truth is that the concept of a professional gamer of any kind was a pipe dream. Now it’s relatively normal.

There are certainly questionable aspects of esports. The establishment of esports has been somewhat slow and very few pro gamers have become actual household names. Additionally, esports viewing figures are large but are spread across a number of different titles and events.

Despite the room for improvement, it can’t be disputed that esports enjoys huge visibility with global interest, which bears a resemblance to other sports in a couple of interesting ways.

Money where your mouth is

Just like soccer, basketball, and other major sports, many people visit an online betting site to place a wager on an esports event. While League of Legends, Counter-Strike, and Dota 2 account for most of the betting action, the competitive gaming activity might be moving away from these phenomenal games moving forward. That said, for the foreseeable future, with interest predominantly directed towards these titles, no one is expecting anything but continued wagering on these titans.

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While Valorant is a relative newcomer to the fun and is currently expanding its fandom, it’s not a sure thing that it will break into that top three. There have been many hero shooters released over the years and all have struggled to stick around at the top.

In a few years’ time, it’s entirely possible that the next big esports betting title will be a mobile game and there’s sound reasoning behind that. Bookmakers see a a strong future surrounding games such as Garena Free Fire, Mobile Legends, and PUBG Mobile simply because more people are mobile gamers than console or PC gamers.

With the potential to connect together betting software and sites directly with mobile games, it’s easy to imagine some creative technology bridging these two industries together. 

Feel the pain

Another aspect of all sports, but relatively unexpected in esports, is the toll of injuries. Forced to retire due to a thumb injury, Thomas “ZooMaa” Paparatto’s story isn’t all that uncommon. A number of current pros on the esports circuit have felt the burn and are often forced to miss contests due to lingering aches and pains. Though the physical rigors of esports are easy to dismiss, it really is a scary problem.

To make matters worse, the damage may not be noticeable until much later, when it’s too late to take preventative action. Just like other sports, expect to see larger organizations employing medical professionals and adding preventative routines to practice regimens.

It’s not just the pros that should be considering the impact their gaming might be having on their bodies. For those not at the elite level, a little consideration to ensure that you’re still capable of playing the games you love beyond your 30s really has no downside. 

People love to speculate about esports and whether it has hit its heyday. While the debate will rage on, the changing betting industry and the injury woes are a couple of ways that esports really does resemble more conventional sports. 


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