Ryan oversees three businesses at YouTube, which includes Gaming, Telco and Tech, as well as the growing Virtual Reality business. Ryan leads a team from around the world to manage global Gaming Publisher partnerships, Top Gaming Content Creators, live streamers and Esports Leagues. In addition to his Gaming role, Ryan leads the VR/AR and Telco & Tech businesses overseeing global strategy, content and partnerships, budget development, P&L, and cross-functional work for these respective businesses.
Ryan joined YouTube in 2014 to create the Gaming vertical, and has since lead Gaming at YouTube to be the most watched Gaming content platform in the world, and has also done the same for the Virtual Reality video business on YouTube.
Previously, Ryan worked in senior roles with major gaming industry companies, including Vice President of Programming with Major League Gaming and Head of Live and eSports at Machinima. As a prominent Esports personality, Ryan is known for his strategic contributions in growing the Esports scene while in his former roles, and as a New York Times Best Selling Author for his work on OpTic Gaming: The Making of Esports Champions. Ryan also was listed on Forbes 30 under 30 in 2014 for his work in the Gaming industry.
There have been two words on the mouths of everybody within the esports community in 2018 the first is Fortnite, the second Ninja. It is difficult to say whether one would have been as big without the other but what is fair to say is that together they appear unstoppable. Fortnite has received nominations for both Esports Breakthrough Game of the Year and Esports Game of the Year and Ninja is a finalist for Streamer of the Year at this year’s Esports Awards. Ninja is the highest viewed streamer on Twitch and he has endorsements from celebrities like Drake. Ninja appears to have it all. Will he capture the Streamer of the Year award in November at the 2018 Esports Awards ceremony? That is the sole responsibility of the esports community to decide.
Esports are part of Blizzard’s core identity. One of the most popular and well-respected makers of computer games, Blizzard has had another fantastic year. In terms of the esports spectrum StarCraft II, Hearthstone, Heroes of Storm and Overwatch still prove to be extremely popular amongst their individual subsets of fans. Blizzard’s core belief of putting gameplay first above anything else could prove invaluable in the lead up to the Esports Award ceremony in November. For continuing their stellar work and developing their current esports, Blizzard is a finalist for the Esports Publisher of the Year award.
Twitch is the industry standard when it comes to esports streaming. Twitch is a community where millions of people and thousands of interests collide in a beautiful explosion of video games, pop culture, and conversation. With chat built into every stream, you do not just watch on Twitch, you are a part of the show. From classic TV show marathons to esports tournaments, if you can imagine it, it is probably live on Twitch right now. Twitch is the home of the majority of the most watched and must-see streamers in the world today. As a two-time winner of the Esports Streaming Platform of the Year award Twitch will certainly be hoping they can make it three in a row.
Evolved Talent Agency (Evolved) is the world’s largest esports player representation agency, working with hundreds of professional players around the world. Evolved was formed by trusted industry members who have come together to represent passionate individuals who are sources of inspiration for millions of fans around the world. Evolved has set out to redefine the interactions between esports players and their organizations, and between content creators and their sponsors. Having worked with over 500 players in the past year alone, and representing over half of the Overwatch League player base, Evolved has proven themselves incremental to any aspiring esports professional. With no limit to the passion the Evolved team puts into the work for their clients, they are a finalist for the Esports Supporting Agency of the Year award.
The reigning Esports Awards Coverage Website of the Year, ESPN Esports has continued to deliver stunning coverage on all things relating to esports. Armed with one of the most in-depth and detailed Esports Calendars, engaging articles and comprehensive coverage on a multi-faceted array of titles. Whether it is the latest news, updates or results ESPN Esports continues to lead the way. Throughout the past year, ESPN Esports has maintained their high standards. Many of the Esports Awards finalists for Esports Journalist of the Year such as Jacob Wolf, Tyler ‘Fionnonfire’ Erzberger, and Emily Rand have written for ESPN Esports. This impeccable devotion to Coverage of Esports has seen them earn a nomination from you the esports community and our esteemed Esports Panel of Judges.
The 2018 Overwatch League season was the inaugural season for the Overwatch League, which began on January 10th, 2018. Regular season play continued through June 16th, 2018, while post-season play ran from July 11th–28th, 2018. The London Spitfire won the Grand Finals over the Philadelphia Fusion to become the League champions, with the Spitfire’s Park “Profit” Jun-young named the Finals MVP. An All-Star weekend was held following the post-season from August 25th–26th, 2018. The Overwatch League Inaugural Season Playoffs where we saw the winner take home the $1Million dollar prize from the $1.7Million prize pool The finals were hosted in the Barclays Centre a venue with a capacity of 19,000.
Clint “Maven” Evans began his journey as a Call of Duty esports Caster from the United States. Maven has been in the Call of Duty since 2014 when he commentated his first event and since then has pursued his commentating career producing a massive fan base to become the voice of Call of Duty esports. Over the years Maven has casted over 40 Call of Duty esports events, such as the 2017 Call of Duty World League Championship, 2018 CWL Dallas Open and 2018 CWL New Orleans Open. Attending these events,Maven has continued to be an expert in his field with vast knowledge on the game, community, professional teams, pro players and casting members. Maven has become an inspiration and paved the way for new talent to follow in his example as a Call of Duty caster.
Intel is a technology company known for their industry-leading processors. Intel caters for a diverse array of budgets and offers a range of performances from elite level performance, gaming level and entry level. Intel provides processors for all major computer device companies such as Apple, Lenovo and Dell. The 2017 Esports Awards Esports Hardware Provider of the Year, Intel will be looking to add yet another title to their collection, as their involvement in esports is nothing short of incredible. Intel hosts their own major events in collaboration with ESL, called the Intel Extreme Masters (IEM), on top of sponsoring Team Edward the largest esports organisation in China.
Milos Nedeljkovic also known as Faceit Mikey is a member of the FACEIT team that hosts major esports events as well as being the home to over 8 million gamers competing in tournaments, championships and leagues. Milos’ plays a major role in the FACEIT organisation that involves managing partnerships to make the events possible and strives to ensure the community are taken into consideration. Milos has ensured there are events at all levels in esports from grassroots upwards.
A former winner of the Esports Breakthrough Game of the Year award, Overwatch will be looking to secure the award for the Esports Game of the Year in 2018. A popular choice amongst the nominating esports community, Overwatch has continued to build upon its every success. With over $7 million worth of prize money up for grabs since the back end of 2015, Blizzard has delivered an esport that has resonated with the esports community. The increasing popularity of the Overwatch League, with its unique city-based franchises, could see Overwatch crowned as the 2018 Esports Awards Esports Game of the Year.
Jacob Wolf has a stellar reputation for being one of the best investigative esports journalists in the world. Well versed in a multitude of different in esports from a plethora of genres, Jacob Wolf provides expert updates and analysis on the likes of League of Legends, Counter-Strike Global offensive and Super Smash Bros Melee. Working for the 2017 Esports Awards Esports Coverage Website of the Year ESPN Esports, Jacob Wolf has uncovered some of largest scandals, transactions and moves in esports history. The youngest employee ever hired at ESPN, Jacob Wolf is a finalist for this year’s Esports Journalist of the Year.
The word on everybody’s lips is Fortnite. This game has not only changed the face of esports but gaming in general. Fortnite has shown absolutely no signs of slowing down. Expanding on to more and more platforms with a launch onto Android expected in the summer, Fortnite with the help of one streamer, in particular, Ninja, has taken the entire globe by storm. This game has transcended gaming and has gone on to become something entirely separate. A first in the history of the Esports Awards, Fortnite is a finalist for both the Esports Breakthrough Game of the Year and the Esports Game of the Year. Can Fortnite continue to defy expectations and pick up both awards at this year’s Esports Awards ceremony?
Cloud9 was founded in 2013 by Jack Etienne. Since 2013 Cloud9 are represented across twelve games with stand out teams in League of Legends, Overwatch and CS:GO. Their teams are considered to be some of the best in the world and have the results to back it up, an example being the London Spitfire winning major titles in Overwatch including the OWL – Inaugural Season Stage 1 Title Match and the Overwatch League – Inaugural Season Playoffs. Cloud9 also won the ELeague Boston Major in CS:GO. They have also been active in League of Legends for the majority of its time as an esport, most recently innovating with a seven-man roster, taking them all the way to the finals of the summer split and once again being North America’s last hope at Worlds 2018 with a historic run that saw them reach the semifinals. Their new faces have also impressed, with top laner Licorice and Spitfire DPS Profit being nominated for the Esports PC Rookie of the Year. All in all, Cloud9 have built a gaming dynasty that spans multiple games and genres. With a vast array of impressive results and trophies in 2018, Cloud9 has earned its place as a finalist for the Esports Organisation of the Year.
Gabriel “Bwipo” Rau is the rotating Top Laner and Bottom Laner for Fnatic who are up for both the Esports Organisation of The Year and Esports Team of the Year awards. Bwipo certainly has had an incredible start to what looks to be a long and prestigious career. Bwipo has shown incredible potential for Fnatic this season and is known to have confidence in abundance. He has over the course of the past year boasted several times on social media that he is the best top laner in Europe. Bwipo shows high levels of much-needed aggression in game and often plays at a level not often associated and indeed somewhat unexpected of a rookie in their first professional season. His efforts have not gone unnoticed as he made a name for himself within the League of Legends scene taking home a brand new award from Riot Games for the EU LCS’ Most Outstanding Rookie of 2018. This is for Bwipo standing out way above the competition aiding Fnatic in their incredible season winning both EU LCS splits, the NA versus EU Rift Rivals and making it to the semi-finals of the midseason invitational. A finalist for the Esports Console Rookie of the Year Award, Bwipo will surely be one of the favourites to win the award with a strong showing at the League of Legends World Championships 2018.
Astralis is a professional CS:GO team founded in 2016 by members of “Team Question Mark” after they left Team SoloMid. Since Astralis was formed they have been competing and succeeding in CS:GO, winning countless tournaments. Astralis results in 2018 include: placed 1st in ELEAGUE CS:GO Premier 2018, 1st in DreamHack Masters Marseille 2018 and the years before having placed first in Intel Extreme Master XI – World Championship and first in ELEAGUE Major. Astralis have in very little time, become one of the most successful teams in CS:GO. Astralis “Dupreeh” has performed exceptionally for the team this year and is one of our finalists for Esports PC Player of the Year. Astralis have the most pro points of any professional team and are a dominant force in any tournament they enter making them a worthy finalist for Team of the Year.
A finalist in both 2016 and 2017, can Helena Kristiansson go one-step and win the Esports Photographer of the Year award? A popular nomination amongst both the Esports Awards Panel and esports community, Helena Kristiansson has delivered in the past 12 months some truly breath-taking photos. Helena Kristiansson is a preservationist of time in her current role as the lead photographer for the ESL Pro League. Helena Kristiansson stops time encapsulating the split second moments in esports for all to see. A finalist for the 2018 Esports Photographer of the Year award, Helena Kristiansson is sure to be in the running come November.
NVIDIA GeForce GTX GPUs and the GeForce Experience application transform everyday PCs into powerful gaming machines. NVIDIA GameWorks software allows developers to make games photorealistic and immersive. NVIDIA is a corporation based in America that design and manufacture, as well as graphics cards for both the gaming and professional markets, chipsets for the mobile computing and automotive market. Nominated for last year’s Esports Hardware Provider of the Year award, NVIDIA narrowly missed winning. They have continued their efforts within esports throughout the past year and proved popular amongst both the esports community and the esteemed panel of judges during the nomination phase. NVIDIA has worked tirelessly in its efforts in esports, sponsoring teams such as Turkish esports brand Team Secret and Cloud9. NVIDIA has also been an official partner of many esports tournaments and events such as Red Bull Battle Grounds, ESL One Championships and even the DOTA 2 the International.
2017 was full of standout moments for OpTic Gaming, with victories a formality. Davis “Hitch” Edwards was there to capture and encapsulate those moments for the rest of eternity. This season so far has seen OpTic Gaming struggle to recapture the form that made them such a dominant force. Davis “Hitch” Edwards won the award for Esports Videographer of the Year last year for his charming persona and for instilling himself so vehemently into the OpTic Gaming family. Hitch is the Head of Production for OpTic and is the mastermind behind the popular Hitchariide series of videos.
A name that has become synonymous within the realms of CS:GO, S1mple has earned the adulation of being one of the finest players in the world. A mainstay for Natus Vincere, who themselves are nominated for the Esports Awards Team of the Year, S1mple has contributed and delivered in the key moments throughout the season. S1mple has led Natus Vincere to three major wins and two premier wins in the past year and has become the player his teammates can rely upon when the going gets tough. At just 20 years of age S1mple could reign supreme over CS:GO for many years to come and cement himself into the history books as one of the greatest AWPer’s to have ever played the game. A finalist for the Esports Awards PC Player of the Year, S1mple of Natus Vincere will surely be one of the favourites to take home the trophy come the night of the ceremony on November 12th.
Kenny Williams has set the Call of Duty world alight with his performances in current title COD: WWII. Playing for the now disbanded Team Kaliber line-up, Kenny enjoyed wins at the CWL New Orleans Open, the CWL Dallas Open and the CWL Pro League Stage 2. He has been one of the most feared SMG Slayers in the game. Kenny carried Team Kaliber at times during the 2018 season. Kenny’s impressive performances were unfortunately not enough to secure a win at the Call of Duty World Championships as a gruelling campaign to the grand finals took their toll after Team Kaliber had managed to reset the bracket. Kenny now of 100Thieves will be looking to take his impressive form into not only his new team but also onto the new Call of Duty title Black Ops 4. An incredible year for any player, let alone a rookie, has seen Kenny earn a double nomination for the Esports Awards 2018. A finalist for both the Esports Console Player of the Year and Esports Console Rookie of the Year awards, Kenny is a favourite in each of the categories.
The name Msdossary is spoken in hushed tones within the FIFA esports community, as very few have shown the sheer dominance he has. From Saudi Arabia Mossad “MSdossary” Aldossary made a massive statement in Manchester when he came out of nowhere and dominated the competition. A confident swagger adorns Msdossary’s play, built upon his impressive use of the 4-1-2-1-2 formation. When Msdossary won the FIFA eWorld Cup, in London at the O2 Arena, this result transcended into the mainstream media. His headline capturing performances even caught the attention of professional footballers including Mesut Ozil who congratulated him on Twitter. His performances have garnered him support and respect in his home country, too, including a coveted meeting with the Saudi Arabian Federation for Electronic and Intellectual Sport. A finalist for both the Esports Console Player of the Year and Console Rookie of the Year, Msdossary could be travelling back to London to pick up another trophy come November 12th.
Ninja currently sits as not just the face of Twitch and live streaming but also as holds incredible numbers on YouTube content creation. There is no denying Ninja’s success as he has taken the gaming world by storm, building up a huge following with a sizable increase in 2017 and 2018. Ninja is most known for playing various Battle Royale genre games. He is the most followed, viewed and engaged esports personality with over 10 million Twitch followers landing him as the most followed Twitch streamer, with more than double the followers of those closest to him. Ninja, when streaming holds an average of 85,000 concurrent viewers, however, and has been known to hit 100,000+ viewers when streaming Fortnite (Which is also up for the Esports Breakthrough Game of the Year and Esports Game of the Year). Ninja holds the record for most viewers on a single stream ran by an individual with over 620,000 viewers on his infamous stream with music artist Drake. Ninja’s success does not stop at Twitch he has also had incredible growth on YouTube with over 17 million subscribers and over 150 million views per month. The beauty of Ninja stems from his attitude towards streaming, he promotes good messages and morals. Ninja has also raised money for various charities but most notably he ran a stream for suicide awareness and his community donated over $100,000 to the charity in just 8 hours. Ninja truly is a force to be reckoned with in this year’s Personality of The Year award.