An Overwatch League team has signed a 17-year-old Overwatch professional player to a $150,000 contract, showing how lucrative an eSports career can turn out to be.
The inaugural season of the Overwatch League is ready to launch, with the official signing window for teams open until Oct. 30.
NRG Esports Signs Sinatraa To $150,000 Contract
The Overwatch League team of NRG Esports has signed Jay Won, known by his handle "sinatraa" and one of the best Overwatch players in North America, to a massive $150,000 contract. The amount of the contract is $100,000 higher than the minimum Overwatch League salary for its players, and does not include his share from the bonuses that the team earns.
For the first season of the Overwatch League, up to $3.5 million in bonuses are up for grabs, and if Won continues his remarkable play, his earnings will likely go over the $150,000 amount of his contract.
Won was the subject of a bidding war between NRG Esports and Cloud9, which drove up the Overwatch pro player's salary to such heights. Won eventually decided to sign with NRG Esports, though it was his mother who actually did the signing as he is still a minor.
Won will join his former coach Brad Bajani, who NRG Esports named the head Overwatch coach and manager after the closure of Selfless Gaming in July. Bajani was the co-owner of Selfless Gaming, and Won previously played under the brand.
Won will be part of the United States team in the Overwatch World Cup, which will go up against the South Korea team at BlizzCon in November.
Overwatch League Shaping Up
NRG Esports owns one of the nine teams that have currently signed up for the first season of the Overwatch League. The $20 million Overwatch League franchise fee has been paid by the likes of the owners of professional sports teams New England Patriots, New York Mets, Miami Heat, and Sacramento Kings.
The teams will have up to 12 players each, with no restrictions on their place of birth or home country. The players will be provided with housing and training facilities by their respective teams.
The structure of the Overwatch League closely resembles that of other professional sports, which would likely make it easier for the eSports league to make waves in the mainstream.
There is currently no start date yet for the Overwatch League, but it is expected to begin within the year. Overwatch players who believe they have what it takes to play competitively in the league still have time to try to secure a spot in an Overwatch League team.