Esports

Michael B. Jordan invests in NYC Call of Duty and Overwatch franchises

by Scott Robertson

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The renowned actor is the latest celebrity to dip his toes into the growing world of esports. Jordan has invested in AndBox – a multi-team esports organization in New York that owns the local Call of Duty team Subliners, as well as the Overwatch team NYXL.

Big names are helping big brands in the world of esports. The latest is actor Michael B. Jordan, who broke through into mainstream Hollywood fame this decade with his performances in Black Panther, Creed, and the Fantastic Four movie.

For Jordan, his involvement with competitive gaming comes in the form of investment in AndBox – the organization that owns and operates the New York Excelsior team in the Overwatch League, and the New York Subliners team in the upcoming Call of Duty League.

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For Jordan, a native of New York and a fan of Call of Duty, the decision was easy, considering AndBox’s approach to bringing esports to the area.

“[Andbox] cared about the New York culture, they wanted to make sure they got it right,” Jordan said. “I felt like they really cared about New Yorkers and being authentic to the city.”

“I’m never the guy who just wants to be involved to put my name on it,” he continued, explaining why he invests only in things he cares about. “I have to have some passion for it. Call of Duty, if anybody knows me, they know that’s my s**t.”

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For a company like AndBox, more investment is always good news, especially considering the buy-in prices they’ve had to pay just to get franchised spots in both the Overwatch League and the Call of Duty League, with price tags ranging into tens of millions.

The direction of both of these leagues is indicative of a move across esports as a whole to build up regional and local fanbases. For the past two seasons, OWL was based almost entirely in Los Angeles. Now they move into a homestand format for season 3, and the Call of Duty League is beginning with a similar format.

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Andbox’s dedication to New York esports is much bigger and deeper than just promoting and running their two biggest franchises. They work with a plethora of other organizations and organizers to run weekly events around the city and the metropolitan area, like Tekken, Call of Duty, and Fortnite tournaments.

With big names like Jordan getting involved in the organizations, the potential for companies like AndBox to change the landscape of esports fandom is limitless.