The Sixers’ ownership group has acquired a controlling stake—an undisclosed percent for which it spent an undisclosed sum—of Team Apex, which has a League of Legends team, and Team Dignitas, which fields teams in the video games Counterstrike and Overwatch, among others. (As part of the partnership, Apex’s League squad will operate as Team Dignitas.)
The move makes the 76ers the first North American professional sports organization to own an e-sports franchise. (Last October a Memphis Grizzlies executive purchased the Immortals and in November members of the Sacramento Kings’ ownership group founded NRG, but never has an entire traditional sports franchise acquired one.) It’s been a year in the making, although, as Philadelphia CEO Scott O’Neil points out, in the e-sports world, that seems like two decades.