17-year-old Overwatch pro becomes league's highest-paid player after $150,000 deal

midian182

Posts: 7,064   +62
Staff member

Those of certain age may remember a time when playing video games was considered a wasteful hobby that led to nothing. But thanks to the monumental rise of eSports, a career in gaming can be a lucrative one. Just ask 17-year-old Jay "sinatraa" Won, who’s become the highest-paid Overwatch League player with a salary of $150,000 per year plus benefits.

Sinatraa’s wage means he’s now earning $100,000 more than the league’s minimum player salary, and that’s before you factor in the revenue-sharing options, potential $3.5 million bonus pool in the first season, and $1 million for the year’s champions.

The player signed for NRG eSports following a bidding war between the team and Cloud9, which led to an extra $50,000 being added to his salary. In the end, sinatraa and his mother – who must sign the agreement as he is a minor – decided to go with NRG.

The contracts given to Overwatch League members come with a slew of perks. Players receive one-year guaranteed deals with a second-year option, employer-sponsored housing, a retirement savings plan, and health insurance. They’re also entitled to 50 percent of team bonuses.

The move sees sinatraa reunite with his former Selfless Gaming coach and team co-owner Brad Rajani, who is now head coach and manager of NRG. Sinatraa left Selfless after it disbanded in July. Rajani’s presence no doubt helped convince the pro gamer to join him at NRG.

It’s been just over a year since Overwatch launched on the PC, Xbox One, and PS4. In that time, Blizzard’s first foray into FPS games has gained over 30 million registered players and continues to hold a spot on our ‘Best PC Games (You Should be Playing)’ list.

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stewi0001

Posts: 2,655   +2,323
I hope he still spends sometime getting an education.

As for me, I will keep gaming as recreational activity.
 

amstech

Posts: 2,648   +1,807
Gaming is still mostly a hobby that is wasteful, but a lot of good can come from it. It certainly helped me get into tech, learn about PC's ext ext.
 

Skidmarksdeluxe

Posts: 8,645   +3,289
"Those of certain age may remember a time when playing video games was considered a wasteful hobby that led to nothing".
I still do and always will but props to him, it sure beats unclogging blocked sewers.
 
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davislane1

I hope he still spends sometime getting an education.

As for me, I will keep gaming as recreational activity.

He's making $150k + bonuses/yr. What possible benefit does he gain from spending money on "an education?"

The only reason to go back to school is to make more money. The rest can be done at a library (or on the Internet).
 

stewi0001

Posts: 2,655   +2,323
I hope he still spends sometime getting an education.

As for me, I will keep gaming as recreational activity.

He's making $150k + bonuses/yr. What possible benefit does he gain from spending money on "an education?"

The only reason to go back to school is to make more money. The rest can be done at a library (or on the Internet).

He's not making millions like "professional athletes." What if something was to happen that causes him to stop him from playing e-sports anymore or he becomes not as good? Better safe to have a fall back than be sorry. Even just having a BS degree.
 

cliffordcooley

Posts: 12,928   +6,257
He's making $150k + bonuses/yr. What possible benefit does he gain from spending money on "an education?"
Future days when those fingers no longer function. After all not many are fortunate enough to stay on top and rake in those wages for very long.
 

That Other Guy

Posts: 47   +25
Depending on your success, pretty sure a gaming career is fairly short lived. maybe 5-10 years? to be playing at pro level. but that definitely could change over time with games and gaming interfaces.

compared to athletic sports that have remained pretty much the same for hundreds or thousands of years, computer games tend to change/evolve much quicker. not too sure how much hockey has changed since its early days, but ima guess not a heck of alot.
 
D

davislane1

He's not making millions like "professional athletes." What if something was to happen that causes him to stop him from playing e-sports anymore or he becomes not as good? Better safe to have a fall back than be sorry. Even just having a BS degree.

Then he goes directly into sales, which doesn't require a degree and has far higher earning potential.
 

Nobina

Posts: 3,285   +3,360
Another reason to spend more hours gaming
Sure, if you're set on becoming a pro. If not, you're not gonna earn **** from just casually playing a game, like with any traditional sport.
 

Evernessince

Posts: 5,464   +6,149
Depending on your success, pretty sure a gaming career is fairly short lived. maybe 5-10 years? to be playing at pro level. but that definitely could change over time with games and gaming interfaces.

compared to athletic sports that have remained pretty much the same for hundreds or thousands of years, computer games tend to change/evolve much quicker. not too sure how much hockey has changed since its early days, but ima guess not a heck of alot.

Yeah, that and it seems that many pro gamers develop hand issues after only a few years. It's not good for your body in general to be sitting in the same position clicking the same way for the amount of time they do.