Sunday, May 24, 2020

The Next Step

Back on Tuesday January 16th, 2018 I released my first betting related post. It was a pre-season power rankings list for the LEC (at the time EU LCS). I had already dabbled a little here and there and played a fair amount of DFS at that point but that was the starting point for what would eventually become a public journal of my foray into handicapping. It started as a way to hold myself accountable similar to what I was doing with this blog beforehand with my advanced solo queue statistics and professional scene predictions posts (some of those old posts are a hoot, feel free to check them out).

In many ways that hasn't changed. As strange as it sounds, there was a certain therapeutic aspect of having the routine of the grind on an almost daily basis and this was my public outlet for that. It's why I never "sold" the blog or anything like that.  I never intended to build a following or get famous, I was just a guy trying to log his journey to getting better at something. Never in a million years did I think I'd ever be writing for websites or other publications. It was just a place for me to put my thoughts so I wouldn't have to type them out a million times when people asked me for opinions as well as a way to track my own progress. 


Eventually, as all obsessive or manic-minded people will understand, it turned into a bonafied project absorbing many more hours of my life than I'd ever intended it to but it was a true labor of love. I absolutely love this game and handicapping it and that hasn't changed. Over 400 blog posts I steadily honed my craft and started picking up a lot of like-minded readers, followers on social media, and most importantly friends that eventually led to a handful of outside writing opportunities at places (thanks to The Action Network, Safestbettingsites.com, Sports Gambling Podcast Network, and more). When the esports boom hit a few months ago I had the honor of joining a few podcast to spread the gospel of League of Legends to the masses. Things got big very fast as dozens turned to hundreds turned to thousands of readers.


At the end of the day, "The Blog" was still my thing. It was more for myself than my readers which is why it's always been free and open to the public. It's truly humbling when people respect your opinion as much as many of you have and for that I thank you all. Even the debates when we disagree have been tremendously fun and engaging! 


In case it wasn't obvious, I'll be moving to a new location for a new adventure, the next step in this journey if you will. It won't be free. I did not take this decision lightly. I have stood firmly against paid picks or touting services for a number of years in favor or full transparancy with the belief that for someone like me, being genuine and having my own voice as I learn this craft earns more respect than dollar signs and that has largely been true in my time doing this. For years and years I've released free (or close to it) content and I'd do it again in a second but I want to talk a bit about what's next and why I'm extremely excited to be a part of something at its foundation: The Esports Department.


A few of my closest colleagues in the space and I wanted to build something on our own instead of trying to convince others to dive in and commit to esports. We've been here, doing this for years and we're damn good at it! It's an opportunity to be a part of a business of our own creation and bring a product that we feel will be better than anything else you can get in this space. Unfortunately that comes at a cost. In order to bring that great product it requires a sacrifice of our resources and most importantly our time.


I'll be pouring all of my energy into this project to make it the best it possibly can be and to do that means I have to drop a lot of my other projects including a number of them that are paid. With the ability to focus more time on my craft along with significantly improved data and resources we've developed, I'm confident I'll be bringing you a product that will be worth every single penny. If I did not think that was the case I absolutely would not be making this transition. 


Don't worry, I'm not going to become some stuffy, professional writer type.  Having my own voice is what got me here and it's still very important to me. You'll still be getting that along with a similar format but I'll be able to do a significantly better job for all of my readers than I am currently able to do. 


I really didn't want this to sound like a goodbye post because I think it's just the beginning of something great but this blog has, strangely enough, turned into a really important part of my life over the past few years and it's been an absolute joy and honor to share in that journey and meet so many of you along the way. That said, it's time to take this to the next level. I hope you'll join me as we climb that next mountain together. 


Starting this coming week with the Mid Season Cup between the LPL and LCK you'll be able to get a taste of what we can deliver to you over at The Esports Department FREE of charge so you can see for yourself. We're also providing top notch CounterStrike: Global Offensive analysis with some of the most accurate projections out there!. I hope to see you all there!


-Vince


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A few other things just because I know people will ask. 


I'll still be posting here from time to time, patch musings, random thoughts, observations, etc. 


I'll still be as active as ever on Twitter and Twitch so don't hesitate to hit my up there!


I'll still be posting my selections to the spreadsheet but it will be after the games take place for record keeping.


The Gold Card Podcast, it will still remain free of charge and available on all platforms every week. We will continue being as goofy and nerdy as we want over there and hope you'll continue to join us! With some backing we'll likely be upping our game in terms of quality (recording equipment, editing, etc), hosting events and contests, and doing prizes/giveaways. Another reason to join us over at The Esports Department! 







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