For a while, there had been a distinct line between Pro Athletes and video games. This was because most video games took a lot of time to get good at and pros would usually prefer to use that time to either rest or additionally practice. That was on top of lots of sports having tough travel schedules, with baseball being the worst among them. Most professional involvement in video games came from sports games, such as Fifa, which was the most popular among athletes as it was fairly easy to pick up and play versus your friends or teammates.
Notable professional athletes who played Fifa competitively are Chad Ochocinco and David Meyler. Bengals' Legendary Wide Receiver, Chad Ochocinco (Formerly Chad Johnson) constant brags about his FIFA ability on twitter. But he also backs it up, as he beats nearly every challenger he faces. He has even appeared on steam with the most popular Fifa streamer on twitch, Castro1021, where he was narrowly defeated. David Meyler was a Premier League mainstay for Hull City in 2016/2017 as well as for the Irish National Team until he was set back with a knee injury. But off of the field, he was a competitive FIFA player. Meyler runs a youtube channel currently sitting at 320.000 subscribers, where he donates his ad revenue to charity. He also became a popular part of the Fifa community, constantly interacting with the other top YouTubers in the FIFA community such as Bateson and Nepenthez. These were far and away one-off cases, but even at that, pros playing a sports game still made a good amount of sense.
Pre-Retirement Ocho already knew his about his crown.
Meyler playing fifa with his Irish national team teammates.
But none of this could have prepared us for the Fortnite onslaught....
Somehow fortnight; battle Royale got insanely popular, and the "free" to play game shot up in popularity like a bat out of hell. As far as I can remember, started with a few college baseball athletes celebrating a double by doing a Pickaxe looking thing. And then a few Pros posted their "Victory Royales" on their Instagram stories, pro basketball players streamed Fortnite on Twitch hours before they played in an NBA game, then a few more things happened and then Antoine Griezmann celebrated scoring a goal in the World Cup Final by doing a Fortnite Dance. Yes, a man who quite possibly achieved one of the rarest and coveted feats in all sports celebrated it like a v i d e o g a m e. The simulation was pretty much broken from this point on since afterward nothing can be real or matter right?
But is it necessarily a bad thing?
I am sure coaches would much rather have their athletes doing something more productive but given Athletes not-so-great record when it comes to Assault and Battery, Drugs, and other vices, most coaches would be content that their players are keeping their noses clean.
Here are a select few examples.