ESPN Delays Apex Legends Tournament Broadcast in Wake of Shootings

The broadcasting of an Apex Legends tournament on ESPN originally scheduled to air this weekend has been delayed in the wake of the recent mass shootings, new reports claim. The EXP Invitational – Apex Legends at X Games tournament was held last weekend and was planned to be shown on ESPN this weekend, though viewers will now have to wait until October to watch the tournament through the network. A message which was reportedly sent out to ABC affiliates says the decision was made “out of respect for the victims and all those impacted by the recent shootings.”

CNET reported on the schedule shift for the Apex Legends tournament and cited the tweet below from esports consultant Rod Breslau who included an image of an email which was reportedly sent out to ABC affiliates. The email said that the tournament was supposed to be shown on August 11th but has since been replaced with another program.

The email’s date implies the message refers to the recent shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio.

While a rescheduled date for the tournament’s broadcast wasn’t given by ABC, CNET reported that sources familiar with the network’s plans have confirmed that the tournament will now air on October 6th, October 15th, and October 27th.

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ABC and ESPN are not the only entities to issue responses to the mass shootings that pertained to video games. Again the topic of violent video games was brought up by politicians in the wake of the shooting with politicians making comments about the impact these games have on individuals. A manifesto which reportedly belonged to one of the alleged shooters referenced the Call of Duty franchise which spurred on some of the discussions. President Trump also delivered statements about the shootings and said “gruesome and grisly video games” are now “commonplace.”

Walmart also responded to the shootings by removing advertisements and other previews for violent video games within its stores, according to internal documents. Images of documents reportedly sent to employees asked workers to remove signing and displays which referenced violence with specific instructions to “turn of for unplug any video game display consoles that show a demo of violent games, specifically PlayStation and Xbox units.”