Chinese organization TOP Esports announced that it has signed an exclusive streaming deal with local livestreaming platform DouYu, effectively ending its agreement with Huya.
All TES League of Legends players will be streaming on DouYu, and Huya’s logo will be replaced by Douyu’s on its team jerseys. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Currently, TES is one of the best performing teams in the League of Legends Pro League (LPL). It won the League of Legends Mid-Season Cup (LCK vs LPL), and was the runner-up in the LPL Spring Split.
Sources close to the deal told The Esports Observer that it was influenced by Yu “Jackeylove” Wenbo, the League of Legends star player in TES. Wenbo was part of the winning team for the 2018 League of Legends World Championship when he played for Invictus Gaming (IG).
Wenbo signed a personal streaming deal with DouYu when he stayed at IG. After he transferred to TES, he kept his streaming rights with DouYu, even while TES’ streaming partner was Huya.
“Once an esports player has a massive influence, they can have personal rights on livestreaming,” said the source. For example, FunPlus Phoenix player Kim “Doinb” Tae-sang streams on DouYu, while Huya is the sponsor of the team.
Despite the fact that this situation exists in the LPL, it still creates a commercial conflict between a team’s livestreaming sponsor and an individual player’s streaming platform. This is likely one of the reasons that TES changed its livestreaming sponsor.
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