SCHENECTADY — “Madden” skills will be put to the test this weekend.
At 2 p.m. Saturday, a single-elimination Madden NFL esports tournament will get underway at Rivers Casino & Resort. Before the “Madden NFL 19” tournament gets started, there will be a meet-and-greet event with sportscaster Larry Ridley, and former New York Jets and Baltimore Ravens All-Pro linebacker Bart Scott; Scott and Ridley will provide commentary for the tournament’s online broadcast at Twitch.TV/compete4ever. The tournament will also be able to be viewed live by people inside the casino.
“The point of the broadcast is to mirror esports and traditional broadcast by broadcasting the games the same way,” Ridley said in a recent interview.
Long associated with the “Madden” franchise, Ridley is the brains behind the tournament. Ridley had one of the longest runs as a “Madden” commentator, and has been associated with the game since 2013. He still voices sections of the game, such as the training, gauntlets and halftime shows.
Plus, he now hosts events for “Madden,” such as Saturday’s esports tournament.
“One of the goals of Madden’s eseries is to allow players to compete year-round,” Ridley said.
The now 38-year-old Scott played 11 seasons in the NFL, making the Pro Bowl and receiving second-team All-Pro honors in 2006 while with the Baltimore Ravens. Scott may be most famous for his post-game interview with ESPN’s Sal Paolantonio following the Jets’ 2011 playoff win against the New England Patriots, which he ended with an emphatic “can’t wait.” The clip would go viral and is still played on sports networks such as ESPN to this day.
Scott now appears on SNY as a New York Jets analyst.
“Rivers Casino is absolutely ecstatic to be working with Compete4ever to bring such an exciting, and nationally recognized esports event to the Capital Region,” Justin Moore, Rivers Casino general manager, said in a press release. “Casino guests will be able to enjoy the fusion of traditional sports and esports right here in the Capital Region as they watch the tournament and have an opportunity to meet former NFL players.”
Tyrell Feaster is an intern at The Daily Gazette. Feaster, a junior at the University at Albany, is majoring in journalism.