Chris Bosh prematurely ended his basketball career. He admits this was a hard move. These players spend their whole lives honing their skills for one purpose. And in a deft swoop that can all be taken away. This was the case for Bosh. He had two blood clots diagnosed in 2015 and 2016. He hasn’t played a game since the All-Star break in 2016. Prior to this, he won two championships with the Miami Heat, was named in 11 All-Star teams, and holds an Olympic gold medal. Whilst Bosh says he may return to basketball, for the meantime he’s focusing on esports.
Bosh joins the Gen.G Esports franchise as a player management advisor. Like similar NBA stars who invested in esports, Bosh plans to bring his physical world sporting experience to the digital world. We see this in a number of professional athletes who own teams. Sportsmen such as Fernando Alonso, Rick Fox, and even player owners like Stephen Curry and Andre Iguodala are able to provide such support to players. With the links between traditional sports and esports clear, we’ll no doubt see more sporting personalities entering the esports scene.
— GT Men's Basketball (@GTMBB) October 11, 2018
In an interview, Bosh explained how his jump to esports is a dream come true:
It’s a dream for me to be able to work with these guys. The way I look at it, competing at a high level, whether that’s business, art or film, athletics, anything you do, there’s a certain way to go about it… I wanted to find something I could enjoy doing and find passion. It’s been very rewarding. I didn’t expect this opportunity or relationship to come up. I like technology and games.
Gen.G Esports competes in a number of games. Their titles include Overwatch, League of Legends, PUBG, Heroes of the Storm, and Clash Royale.
Unlike some of the current NBA players who have investments in teams, Bosh will take a much more hands-on approach. With plenty of time up his sleeve, Bosh will be coaching teams on many aspects of esports. Elements of teamwork and putting the team first will be a big focus. Bosh will ultimately be a mentor, sounding board, motivator, and adviser for the players.
The Chief Growth Officer of Gen.G Esports, Arnold Hur, told how he values the experiences Bosh brings to the table:
Chris is good for us both on a surface level and on a deeper level. On the surface level, he’s a champion. He knows what it’s like to put people together and work on a team and head in the same direction. That’s something that we thought was such an invaluable experience – to do it at the highest level of professional sports. We thought getting that kind of experience was important for us. It’s new for us. It’s new for esports.
Bosh’s investment into esports follows a wave of money flowing into the esports community. The former CEO of eBay is invested into esports. Additionally, Cloud9 has raised a significant amount of money. These are exciting times for the industry. As esports continues to grow, more capital will flow into the space, increasing the scope and capability of the industry as a whole.
Is your favourite sporting star into esports? Let us know in the comments below.
Michelle is a Content Producer in the realms of innovation and technology. Known as the “Hackathon Queen” you’ll often find her on stage MC’ing or speaking on a range of topics from artificial intelligence, to business, community engagement, the future of work, and esports. With a background in both science and arts, Michelle writes extensively on a range of topics including innovation, startups, corporate culture, esports, business development, and more. She has a passion for gaming and combines this with her experience in a range of industries. Michelle brings a unique insight into esports innovation and draws many parallels between the physical world of sport, and the digital world of esports.