Drug Testing for E-Sports Athletes

Drug Testing for E-Sports Athletes

Concentration is essential...
Concentration is essential…
The headline sounds like a joke, but it’s a real thing, and coming very soon to the world of competitive video gaming. Drug Testing for E-Sports Athletes:

ESL announces plans to test for PEDs

As the popularity and money associated with e-sports has skyrocketed, the world’s largest gaming organization, the ESL, announced Thursday it would begin to explore a comprehensive drug testing program.

“We’ve known for some time that performance-enhancing drugs could be a challenge that we’d eventually need to face,” James Lampkin, vice president of pro gaming for the league, told ESPN.com. “With the explosive growth of our events and industry, the stakes have gotten to a point where, just like traditional athletes, some have begun to look for that extra edge. With knowledge that there was likely active abuse of PEDs taking place, we immediately began serious discussions with top drug agencies for methods of prevention.”

In order to ensure an even playing field, the ESL, which is headquartered in Germany, said it has partnered with the National Anti-Doping Agency (NADA) in its country to take the next steps and will also involve the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to help carry out its rules and penalties when a policy is formed.

The proximate cause was an esport “athlete,” a pro gamer from the Counter Strike world, admitting that he and his team had used Adderall, and not because they’ve all got ADHD.

This post could actually be out first “Caption This” for an article instead of a funny image. Anyone got any good jokes about Mt. Dew and Cheetos? How they’ll take your Red Bull mouse when they pry it from your cold, dead, fragged fingers? How when caffeine is outlawed, only outlaws will drink caffeine? Etc…

Or am I making too much light of a serious issue affecting the competitive balance of the world’s fastest growing competitive sport?

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10 thoughts on “Drug Testing for E-Sports Athletes

  1. Whereabouts is that Internet Cafe located? Because I really like the look of those, uh, keyboards.

  2. While I don’t think that Adderall and similar PEDs have a large impact on the competitive balance, it is a serious threat to the public image of eSport-Events. As Mr. Lampkin said, the industry has grown tremendously in the past years, and if there’s enough money at stake you will always have somebody who will try anything to win.

    ESL is protecting it’s business by proactively fighting this issue, if they would ignore it or play it down they are risking a scandal which could start a chain reaction with serious consequences for their interests.

    Korean Starcraft had a large betting and match fixing affair a few years ago, the scene had long ignored the lingering menace. When everything was unveiled a chain reaction started, players had to end their career, some where even prosecuted, sponsors withdrew, gaming teams had to disband, fans lost interest, a television channel dedicated to gaming broadcast (and operating it’s own league) had to shut down. While you can’t hold that affair single-handedly responsible for the end of professional Broodwar, which at the time was already over a decade old. But it certainly accelerated the demise by a magnitude.

    As Mr. Lampkin is a long-time member/contributor on teamliquid.net, and certainly has knowledge about all of this, he’s is doing an excellent job in consulting ESL to take proactive measures against anything that could hurt the legitimacy and image of the Events they’re hosting.

    • Why wouldn't it? It has the numbers in fans, viewers, revenue, players and also has the flashyness of sport events. It's popularity has only gone up in the last decade, to the point that in some countries TV stations cover large events and pro players can also get athlete visas in some places. If eSports isn't legit then the non-electronic sports aren't either. Of course some people have been saying that about specific sporting events, not that it matters much. Personally I don't see why sports have to exclude competitions where mental abilities are the dominant ones. The players still have to keep practicing, just like other athletes do, if they want to keep ahead of the competition.

  3. Somehow I'm wondering two things, and I'm being funny when I say this:1. how do those strippers expect to get tipped? by bitcoin?2. why are there CRT monitors in that internet cafe? or whatever that is (photoshop maybe?)

    • It's from some Russian gaming event years ago, where they hired strippers to distract the players.

      I've seen more recent versions with Korea gamers playing and korean booth babes in bikini type outfits doing their thing. Not as blatantly as those naked Russian women, but since no one does anything as blatantly as Russians, that's to be expected.

  4. Awww how cute! Irrelevant people thinking e-Sports isn’t legit.

    Meanwhile we get millions of viewers, 10 hour training/strategy sessions with coaches and managers + tournaments with price pools of 15.000.000 $.



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