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Disney Tackles eSports with NFL

Disney Tackles eSports with NFL

NORTH AMERICA–ESPN and Disney XD, both The Walt Disney Company subsidiaries, have secured the exclusive rights from Electronic Arts and the National Football League to broadcast the upcoming “EA Sports Madden NFL 18” Championship Series.

EA and the NFL are teaming with ESPN and Disney XD for a multi-platform sports event that places the “Madden” video game series at its center.

NORTH AMERICA–ESPN and Disney XD, both The Walt Disney Company subsidiaries, have secured the exclusive rights from Electronic Arts and the National Football League to broadcast the upcoming “EA Sports Madden NFL 18” Championship Series.

The distribution partnership is a vote of confidence of the eSports category, its vast viewership and the opportunities it presents, both from an IP perspective and potential merchandise develop view.

Distributed across ESPN’s broadcast network and on Disney XD, the partnership kicked off on Jan. 26 with a “Madden NFL 18” Club Championship tournament at Pro Bowl.

The distribution partnership is a vote of confidence of the eSports category, its vast viewership and the opportunities it presents, both from an IP perspective and potential merchandise develop view.

ESPNews aired the quarterfinal events on Jan. 27. More events are scheduled to air through Feb. 1.

Between Super Bowl LII and the 2018 NFL Draft, Disney XD and the ESPN app will host a weekly “Madden NFL 18” competitive gaming content, with the Ultimate League champion crowned at the Madden Bowl, live from the 2018 NFL Draft, airing on ESPN2.

Beginning in April, ESPN2 will also broadcast an Ultimate League episodic series. The content will focus on character and storylines. Episodes will also be available on demand on the ESPN app.

"We are excited to partner with EA Sports and ESPN to bring the Madden Club Championship and Madden Ultimate League to the millions of ‘Madden NFL’ fans globally, and to broadcast these competitions from our key fan events, like the Super Bowl and the Draft," says Chris Halpin, chief strategy officer, NFL. "We are also thrilled to be the first major professional sports league to have every team represented in a premier esports event. We are confident our fans will love the competition and action."

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