(Giphy by Paige Gross, via twitter.com/bugha)
A 16-year-old from Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, was the first-ever winner of the Fortnite World Championship held in New York City this past weekend, and he walked away as a multi-millionaire.
Kyle “Bugha” Giersdorf beat out professional gamers and famous streamers, winning the $3 million first-place prize for individual players, CNN reported. It’s the largest-ever payout for a single player in an esports tournament.
Giersdorf celebrated with his family members who traveled to the Arthur Ashe Stadium from their hometown, about an hour outside Philadelphia in Montgomery County.
“Words can’t really explain it. I’m so happy,” Giersdorf told the news outlet. “Everything I’ve done in the grind has all paid off and it’s just insane.”
Giersdorf won the first round with nine in-game kills, and went on to rack up dozens of in-game kills each round, totaling 59 points, a large lead over the second-place winner, 24-year-old Harrison “Psalm” Chang, who won $1.8 million. Shane “Epikwhale” Cotton, 16, took third, winning $1.2 million, and in fourth, Nate “Kreo” Kou, 18, won $1.05 million, CNN reported.
Giersdorf is signed to Sentinels, an esports organization based out of Los Angeles.
Today was indeed the day… ?
— SEN Bugha ?? NY (@bugha) July 28, 2019
Esports’ popularity around the world and in Philadelphia has been on the rise in recent years. Arcadia University recently listed four positions for esports coaches for Overwatch, League of Legends, Hearthstone (a game from World of Warcraft) and Rocket League, aka car soccer.
Upon completion in 2021, the hub will be a 3,500-seat arena dedicated to esports and entertainment, located near Xfinity Live! in the Philadelphia Sports Complex.-30-
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