ESPN 2 is a twisting nether of weirdness.
At any given moment, anything—or perhaps everything—could be happening on this station. The Dos, as it's known colloquially in my brain, is a plug-and-chug outlet for ESPN spinoffs, documentaries and live feeds of competitive labrum tearing.
The ESPN 2 experience is a potluck dinner, and a number of prospective diners lost their appetites and/or sanity when they tuned in to the Dos late Sunday night to see a live broadcast of an online gaming tournament.
The event was "Heroes of the Dorm," a Blizzard-sponsored Heroes of the Storm tournament pitting teams from college campuses across North America against each other for the grand prize of a full college scholarship.
Surrounded by NBA playoff and Stanley Cup action, the two-hour "e-sports" program stood out from other fare aired Sunday. Of course, some people freaked the hell out when they saw extensive construction of additional pylons occurring on ESPN's alternate channel.
Here's a taste of extremely sports'd people getting mad over the lack of real sports-ing going in a late Sunday time slot at ESPN 2:
Conversely, others found themselves enraptured by the heroes and their dragons. They didn't understand the sight that lay before them, but they couldn't look away:
Most just thought it was hilarious:
This isn't the first time ESPN has aired video game footage on its networks. "The Worldwide Leader in Sports" ran a Dota 2 gaming championship in 2014, to similar surly reactions from certain fans.
Deadspin's Timothy Burke tweeted the network has also been airing "Heroes of the Dorm" matches on ESPN 3 for the past couple of months:
With that said, this is about as good a time as any to admit I'm a closet nerd—or was a closet nerd.
I've played StarCraft. I did the Diablo thing before the franchise became a contemptible embarrassment. Hell, I'll still lace them up for some Halo or Call of Duty or whatever boom-headshot-yeah title you want to play.
Video games have their place, and while no one wants to see Leeroy Jenkins battle Ragnaros the Firelord on Saturday mornings in the fall (or do they?), the occasional late-night gaming tournament is no worse than the hours of mindless World Series of Poker programming ESPN loves to run as daytime filler.
Also, just look at these kids go. I don't know what they're doing, but The Cauldron posted a Vine of Arizona State and UC Berkeley locking horns in the championship. The broadcast had commentators and everything.
We're this close to hearing Bill Walton yell, "My life for Aiur."
Think about that.
Dan is on Twitter. Always construct additional pylons.