[toc]The world of esports is a little quiet in mid-March, with (surprise, surprise) the exception of League of Legends; the Spring Split Playoffs are ramping up to a climax over the coming weeks.
In April, however, there is a ton of cash flying around in major esports events – most of this coming courtesy of the Kiev Major, which will see Dota 2 teams playing for a $3 million prize pool.
Where to bet on esports
Bet365 is, as per usual, offering by far and away the most markets on esports events. It has has a whole heap of bets on the qualifiers for the Kiev Major, and we can expect to see similar options for the tournament itself.
SkyBet is an extremely close second if we tally up the number of esports bets on offer from the major sites this week. In fact, it might even overtake Bet365 – however, the usability of the former site tips it to the top.
Betway is back in business with their new and improved site after last week’s blip. It may not have the widest range of markets on esports, but it’s certainly the most involved in the industry with an esports welcome offer and continued sponsorship of Ninjas in Pyjamas.
Pinnacle, despite some criticism about its update frequency and markets, continues to take bet after bet on esports. It took Pinnacle less than six months to go from their four millionth esports bet to their five millionth – will it hit eight figures this year?
Ladbrokes’ esports momentum seems to be wearing off a bit. It doesn’t have a ton of esports bets available this week (though, in its defense, there’s not a lot to bet on this week) but at least it offers more than outrights.
Unikrn has a perfectly reasonable number of games and markets on its “esportsbook” this week, but it’s continuing to lag behind some of the bigger sites, despite its specialization and focus on esports.
There’s little change at PaddyPower this week. Overall, the boys in green are worth throwing into an odds comparison website when it comes to esports, but they’re not exactly overflowing with esports betting markets.
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The week in esports events
All in all, there’s something of a lull in esports events over the coming week. That will all change in April, though, with a whole host of major events kicking off across the esports industry.
League of Legends
League of Legends continues to be the focus of the esports event calendar, but as we head towards April the Spring Playoffs taper off, with the Mid-Season Invitational taking place on April 28. The PGS, NACS and TLC MY Spring Playoffs all wrap up this week.
It’s unusually quiet on the CS:GO front for the next couple of weeks, as the Esports Championship Series and the StarLadder i-League StarSeries don’t kick off until the end of March and the start of April, respectively.
We’re not quite in the calm before the $3 million storm that is late April’s Kiev Major, as the Dota 2 Asian Championships and a not-so-insignificant $500,000 prize pool await two weeks from now.
StarCraft’s next six-figure event isn’t until the end of April, when 80 players will head to Austin, Texas, for a $100,000 DreamHack Open event. Between now and then there’s plenty going on in Seoul for the enterprising StarCraft bettor.
Hearthstone’s Winter Championship takes place in Nassau, Bahamas, just under two weeks from today. There will be 16 teams competing for $250,000.