While esports might one day flatten the opportunity curve for those not blessed with genetics enabling explosive athletic ability to enter pro sports, the traditional nepotistic through lines of ownership and team management promise to hold steady.
Case in point: Tucker Roberts, 27-year-old son of Comcast CEO Brian Roberts, has been tapped to run the Philadelphia Fusion, the Activision Overwatch League franchise purchased in September by Comcast for $20 million.
Fusion will be managed through Comcast’s Spectacor business unit, which also runs the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers. The younger Roberts told The Philadelphia Inquirer that Overwatch is “the future of sports for millennials.” He’ll serve as president of the newly formed team.
“I wanted to be part of it,” he said.
“Overwatch” is the multiplayer first-person shooter video game first released by Activision Blizzard last year. And esports, of course, is comprised of spectator events where folks pay good money to watch professionals play the games, either at live venues or over the internet.
“We like the idea of hosting events, bringing in fans and growing this market,” said Dave Scott, CEO of Comcast Spectacor, to Bloomberg in September. Eventually, the league plans to have its players live in their teams’ respective cities and play in front of live audiences numbering up to 5,000. For now, according to The Inquirer, the 12-member Fusion team is sharing a large house in Los Angeles and will play its first game from that location on Thursday night.
The team will hold a Philadelphia watch event at Wahoo’s at 3180 Chestnut St. in West Philadelphia for fans.
A 2013 Wharton School of Business graduate, Tucker Roberts’ resume includes an internship at Activision, as well as a tenure as an assistant producer at EA Sports. His LinkedIn profile also shows a short tenure as an entrepreneur in residence at Comcast Ventures.
Roberts has served as a strategic adviser for Comcast Spectacor, focusing on the Fusion project since the purchase was made in September. He’ll report directly to Scott.