On the afternoon of January 20th, the Houston Rockets played host to the Golden State Warriors at the Toyota Center in a marquee match for the NBA. It was a preview of the epic seven-game playoff clash between the two teams later in May: the all-star duo of Steph Curry and Kevin Durant led the Warriors as per usual, while James Harden, who would go on to win the league’s MVP award, had just returned from a hamstring injury in time to help his club battle the NBA’s defending champions.

It was a back-and-forth game that culminated in the Rockets pulling off a close eight point victory, thanks in large part to Harden’s return. Later that day, the two organizations competed on a very different playing field: Summoner’s Rift.

January 20th also happened to be the opening night for the North American League of Legends Championship Series’ (NA LCS) spring season, the long-running pro circuit for the free-to-play strategy game. And the third matchup of the evening saw two brand new squads go head-to-head: Clutch Gaming, owned by the Rockets, faced off against the Warriors-backed Golden Guardians.

This match wasn’t nearly as close as its NBA counterpart. In the debut for both sides, Clutch dominated, with the Guardians struggling to inflict any damage on their superior opponents.

As e-sports continue to chase mainstream popularity, traditional sports organizations have steadily joined the ranks. Now, some of the biggest professional e-sports leagues in the world are starting to look a lot like the NBA or NFL. Read more from theverge.com…

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