But for companies there's an inherent risk when jumping into an emerging industry such as esports which is what former Golden State Warrior and 2k22 mt acknowledged tech entrepreneur Andre Iguodala once called "the Wild Wild West". The risk was worthwhile for the NBA. "It's built into the NBA's branding as well as the 2K brand to be innovative" Donohue explains, adding that the NBA owners "realise that the future is bright and will continue to grow. Therefore, I think there's more risk in not doing it rather than doing it.
Some fear that esports are obscure ideas, attracting gamers who are hardcore, but with the potential for commercial success, were proven to be false. Forbes stated last year that global earnings from esports are expected to rise to $1.1bn in 2019.
Donohue tells me that even in the past three years, in the three seasons in which I have been talking have been vastly different from the way they were before the league started. Kirk Lacob, Warriors Assistant Director of Operations, recently told me that esports was "absolutely getting more mature".
Donohue talks about the benefits of a league that is run from the NBA office in regards to bringing in partners. "The advantage of being the NBA 2K brand is that we have fantastic relationships with many of these partners and as such, we're able to provide them with a helping hand to guide them through eSports and assist them in understanding how to tap into eSports as a fantastic way to amplify their brands."
Another advantage that companies who participate in who participate in the NBA 2K League has, is that it is one that is easily understood. Donohue emphasizes that esports might sometimes be difficult for consumers. "You don't need for a license to play our games. If you understand basketball, you'll get it," Donohue says.
Advertising in the game itself is as well-known. Donohue states that it's normal to view basketball games with courtside signs. This lets players "be an integral part" of the game's virtual reality.
The NBA 2K League is a highly-rated and profitable game thanks to its enthusiastic supporters. But Donohue states that "we feel as if we're only mt for sale 2k22 getting started." He cites the 1.9 billion people who follow the NBA on social media as a massive pool of potential.