In the past few years, the popularity of eSports has increased tremendously. More and more people are developing an interest in eSports, either as just fans or looking to get actively involved themselves.
As eSports started to gain more spotlight, various betting sites have picked up on the trend, including popular events and tournaments from the niche to their offering.
For knowledgeable punters, this has opened a new world of opportunities. So much so, in fact, that there’s been a sharp rise in eSports betting in the recent period, leading to the question: could this activity experience the boom similar to that of Texas Hold’em in the mid to late-2000s?
It may seem farfetched at first, but both activities have certain similarities, making this scenario not that unlikely.
eSports and Online Poker Attract Similar Demographics
Both online poker and eSports target similar demographics. The online poker boom was mostly created by young men and women between the ages of 18 and 30 who were attracted by the opportunities presented by the game.
In fact, many successful poker players have made a transition from the world of eSports.
Of course, being actively involved in eSports and betting on them are two separate things, but they’re not completely separate activities. Those who keep up with this world will likely have a wealth of information at their disposal, allowing them to make much better decisions.
Money Making Opportunities Are There
Online bookmakers have dealt with traditional sports for a long time, and many of them are run by people who have been in the betting niche long before the internet was a thing.
However, they, too, are new to eSports betting.
This means that there are better opportunities to make money betting on eSports than wagering on football, tennis, or any other popular sport. If you know where to look, you’ll likely find some good odds, as bookies might not always get things right.
You’ll need to do your homework and stay in touch with important developments in this world, but for many people, this is hardly a chore.
At this point in time, there are tens of millions of eSports fans around the globe, and the number is constantly rising. The advancement of streaming technology has allowed people worldwide to see their favorite players in action, so they already have an excellent starting point.
It’s a Fun Way to Make Profit
Just like online poker, betting on eSports can be a very exciting and entreating way to make some money.
Since you can watch almost all major competitions for free via streaming platforms, eSports betting can be a very involved activity. It’s not just about placing your bets and waiting for the results. You can watch everything unfold and experience every moment of it.
Money may have been the main reason behind the online poker boom, but it wasn’t the only one.
People, especially young people, seek activities that also offer excitement and adrenaline. There is plenty of it at the felt, but you can get almost the same buzz from betting on eSports and watching matches you have the money riding on.
Both Activities Feature a High Degree of Freedom
Poker players don’t have a fixed working schedule or a boss over their heads. They can make a lot of money playing cash games, freezeout tournaments, or whatever other game formats they prefer on their own time.
Not many career choices offer this kind of freedom, which is why so many people turned to poker in the 2000s and after.
A competent eSports bettor can enjoy a similar lifestyle. Online bookies these days make it super-easy to place your bets whenever and however you want: from a PC, laptop, phone, tablet, or any other device with an internet connection and a screen.
In fact, betting eSports is even less technically demanding than online poker.
With most modern bookmakers, you won’t even have to install any software on your phone or computer. Their betting platforms are entirely web-based, so you can do whatever you want to do straight from your browser.
It’s Challenging & Rewarding
You won’t become good at betting eSports overnight. Just like with poker, there is a certain learning curve.
It’s not just about following your favorite teams and players.
Like in any other form of betting, you'll need to learn where to find the best information and how to make the most out of it.
Poker players have poker forums. Esports fans have similar communities where you can find a wealth of free information that you can take advantage of. For those willing to put in the time and effort, opportunities are almost endless.
On top of this, being a part of the community comes with its own non-monetary rewards. Meeting new people, acquiring new skills, and constantly adopting fresh information on something you're passionate about can be truly fulfilling.
Summary: What Comes Next for eSports Betting?
While many crucial elements are there, it’s impossible to say if eSports betting will ever reach the same popularity as online poker.
The fact of the matter is that poker had a great push in the media after the game-changing Moneymaker’s triumph in 2003. Without it, who knows if the poker boom would have happened?
eSports betting will probably need a similar push if it’s ever to come close to online poker in terms of popularity.
Right now, it’s still a bit of a niche activity, just like poker used to be in the pre-boom days. If and when more people start to uncover opportunities this activity can offer, there could be a major shift in the cards.
If all of this seems too abstract and you'd rather stick to online poker, check out this great article on making a living from poker in 2021 to see if it’s still a viable option in this day and age.