The Super Bowl isn't the only live competition that has more viewers than Game 7 of the NBA Finals and the BCS national championship.
eSports, which are competitive video games, have drawn enormous numbers of viewers the past few years. In fact, an estimated 32 million people watched the 2013 League of Legends Season 3 World Championship (which sold out Staples Center in Los Angeles) in October. That's more than the estimated viewership of the World Series and the Final Four combined.
This graph shows just how popular eSports have become:
this eSports chart is kind of insane pic.twitter.com/tsb18qH7qD
— Charlie Warzel (@cwarzel) May 19, 2014
Viewership across all eSports titles (other popular games include FIFA and Dota 2) has doubled over the past year, with about half of those viewers coming from the U.S. Viewers are mostly male (about 70 percent) and between the ages of 21 and 35 (55 percent).
Many fans watch live competitions and highlights on the website Twitch, which has become known as the YouTube of eSports. But, according to a report in Variety, YouTube will soon become the YouTube of eSports. That's because the video website (which is owned by Google), purchased the three-year-old Twitch for more than $1 billion.
eSports are seen as so valuable because the viewers are young and dedicated. Of the estimated 71 million people worldwide that watch the competitions, the average viewer tunes in 19 times a month for around 2.2 hours.
(H/T to For The Win)