NHL teams take to the esports ice for charity, with tournament participants including the Seattle Kraken!


Hockey fans haven’t had much to look forward to this spring, with the end of the season torpedoed in March by COVID-19 and the playoffs on ice for the foreseeable future.

Today brings good news then as the National Hockey League has announced a four-week esports charity tournament featuring representatives from all 32 teams.

And yes that means the Seattle Kraken will be on board even though the expansion team doesn’t technically have a single player on its roster yet. Representing the Kraken—that’s what we’re calling them, and that’s what fans want the team to be called—will be ringer Luke Wilson from the National Football League’s Seattle Seahawks.

The NHL 20 charity exhibition will have players from each team going one-on-one, with the goal being to engage fans through in-game banter rather than having them running each other through the boards on the virtual ice.

Games, which are being sponsored by Honda, will be watchable on YouTube, Facebook, Twitch, and NHL.com. Select games will also be on television, with Sportsnet ONE and NBCSN hosting broadcasts. Providing organizational support will be global eSports tournament organizer ESL.

As part of the tournament the NHL and NHL 20 publisher Electronic Arts will donate $140,000 to COVID-19 relief efforts.

Mike Usinger once took the better part of two years to finish Grand Theft Auto. Over the course of his career he has written about everything from eSports to music to movies to travel.

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