Hurricane to hold its own mini Super Bowl with esports ‘Madden’ tournament

Stock image, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The Super Bowl is coming to Hurricane – at least, the virtual kind.

A screenshot from the EA Sports game “Madden 20 NFL” shows a virtual version of San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle making a diving catch. | Photo courtesy EA Sports, St. George News

The city’s recreation department is launching its esports initiative with the first city-sponsored “Madden NFL” video game tournament Friday starting at 6 p.m. at the Hurricane Community Center.

For those who don’t have a Playstation, Xbox or Nintendo in their household and are unfamiliar with the phenomenon, esports is a form of competition using video games. And they’re not just limited to games that simulate the traditional physical activities of football, baseball and basketball. They can also involve competitions involving the popular “Fortnite,” “League of Legends,” “Warcraft” or “Call of Duty” games.

In this case – and appropriately for the weekend of the big game – it’s all about football that is played with fingers and controllers, rather than pads and helmets.

As to those who might question why the city’s recreation department is engaging in video game activities, Hurricane recreation and leisure services director Bryce King said he sees the Friday event – and all of Hurricane’s future esports activities – as a way to bring together those young and old who may not be able to physically or socially participate in the more physical activities typically associated with parks and recreation. 

“This is all about bringing people together,” King said.

Those who are interested in the Friday night tournament need only the $15 entry fee and able hands to participate. Controllers and the Xbox version of “Madden” will be provided. Participants just need to show up.

In fact, it was decided at a recent Hurricane City Council meeting that Room 126 at the community center will be a dedicated esports room for the foreseeable future.

For more information or to sign up before Friday night, go to the Hurricane City Leisure and Recreation website.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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