ONE of sports-entertainment celebrities that has dipped his hands in gaming and succeeded in it, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) superstar Xavier Woods said he welcomes the enormous growth that Esports has had globally in recent years but believes such ascent can still be enhanced by taking cue from WWE’s thrust as an organization.
Recently visited the country to touch base with local WWE fans, Woods, Austin Creed in real life and a Guinness World Record holder for having the most subscribed to celebrity video game channel for his YouTube channel UpUpDownDown, said how Esports has evolved throughout the years is pretty amazing and the potential for it to grow some more is still high more so if stakeholders would consider looking at how the WWE is going about things to grow its business.
“I think Esports are amazing. The biggest thing about it is that it brings camaraderie and changes the view of people who do not like video games or try demonize it. But what I think it is still missing is what pro wrestling has, which are charismatic characters and larger-than-life aspects,” said Woods, also part of the popular tag team group New Day, when he met members of local media for a roundtable on Nov. 30.
“The thing about the WWE is it is putting smiles on people’s faces. So it’s an awesome place to be in, an awesome company to work for. When music hits and the athletes walk out, kids are losing their minds and having a good time. I feel like we can bring that same kind of emotion to Esports,” he added.
Woods went on to say that bringing Esports and what it is all about to more people on a consistent basis would go a long way for the gaming sector, which was considered as a niche market early on.
“In the WWE we have our pay-per-views, our SummerSlam, Survivor Series, all of those, but three days out of a week we’re wrestling non-televised events around the world that people get to see and experience. And Esports doesn’t have that aspect yet,” he said.
“Esports has its big shows. It has the CapCom Cup. It has EVO (Evolution Championship Series), it has CEO. But as far as weekly things happening where casual fans are able to go into local gaming spots, no,” Woods added.
Apart from sharing his passion for professional wrestling and gaming, while here Woods also took time to do other activities, including joining a basketball clinic led by the Alab Pilipinas team for special kids, which he said was a great experience for him.
He also got a chance to check out other places in the metro and see what they have to offer.
Part of the WWE group that did a show in the country in 2016, Woods said he is looking forward to doing another production here in Manila in the future. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo