League of Legends: How one video game is on its way to becoming the next major worldwide sport

They showed up hours early, the young people did, dressed in the uniforms of their favorite athletes. (They called them athletes, too, and one day so will you.) The names on the back of the uniforms were unfamiliar and strange, words plucked from the ether – Faker, Wolf, Smeb, GorillA, Cry. Some of the fans were in costume, but most were not. They traveled in packs, mostly boys but some girls as well, walking together in groups of three and four up 8th Avenue toward Madison Square Garden. Here they were, to see their heroes on the biggest stage, at the center of the universe.

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