GRID Data Partnership With LoL And Valorant Esports Bolsters Integrity Of NC Esports Betting

Riot Games, the developer of League of Legends (LoL) and Valorant, signed a data partnership and equity deal with the data company GRID, making it the exclusive data provider for LoL and Valorant esports.

With North Carolina’s provision for esports betting, this partnership has implications for North Carolina esports bettors waiting for the launch of this burgeoning market.

Currently, the North Carolina sports betting catalog does not include esports betting, but this will change as Sterl Carpenter, deputy director of sports betting for the NC Lottery Commission, has said that the Commission is waiting to hear more from operators about which esports markets they wish to carry.

Both LoL and Valorant represent top esports betting markets across the globe, and they will surely be on the menu of most, if not all sportsbooks offering esports betting.

When will North Carolina online sports betting go live? That’s the question all Tar Heel sports bettors want to know. The NCLC has until June 14, 2024, to launch the industry, and it’s gone so far as to confirm that it will not launch before the 2024 Super Bowl on Feb. 11.

Terms of the deal

Per Cody Luongo, corporate communications manager at and author of the Sharpr substack, Riot Games, one of the top game developers across the esports landscape, has signed a three-year agreement with GRID to make the data company the official data provider for LoL and Valorant esports.

Riot Games will also acquire an equity stake in GRID, though those details have not been made public.

The LoL World Championships has historically been among the world’s largest esports betting events. A well-tenured game with prize pools and audiences in the millions makes this one of the esports betting highlights of the year.

Valorant Esports also receives huge audiences and prize pools, and those numbers are only growing.

Riot Games’ partnership allows GRID to plug directly into their servers and give viewers authentic in-game data during LoL and Valorant events. Moritz Mauer, CEO at GRID, calls their access “a source of truth” for esports audiences.

GRID will bring authentic in-game data to fans, bettors

Moritz’s claim to being a source of truth alludes to the fact that game data from external sources (those that do not connect directly to game servers) is available to fans and bettors. Still, that data comes at a degree of distance from the actual game and carries some variance from actual game data, making it less reliable for people following these fast-paced events.

How does in-game data work in esports and esports betting?

In a July Esports Insider article, Moritz explained how GRID’s product serves its audience.

“Imagine that you dive straight into the game.” Moritz explains. “Where are you on the map? Have you executed a perfectly timed ultimate in VALORANT? Did you escape a deadly 1v4 clutch in CS:GO? These all are raw in-game events that can be turned into data — player positions, K/D/A, abilities used, economy status. Every split second decision has the potential to alter the outcome of the entire game.

“Everything that happens in the game can become an in-game data point. When it comes to terminology — in-game, game data, and play by play data — all these names refer to the same type of data.”

For the viewer, GRID can process raw data and provide streaming overlays of key in-match data points. This is incredibly helpful–vital, in fact–when watching an esports tournament that features sprawling action and numerous participants across a broad landscape.

For the bettor, the accuracy of the data has obvious implications for placing informed bets. This significance only increases as more esports betting markets become available, especially potential in-game markets where bettors need to react to game events in real time.

Luongo explained to NCSharp through email, “At a minimum, it should help with coverage and uptime for sportsbooks using GRID’s data, which would uplift the experience broadly for esports bettors.”

Further, reliable game data increases the overall integrity of esports betting markets. Recently, GRID partnered with tech firm U.S. Integrity to help U.S. gaming regulators draft effective esports betting regulations.

For North Carolinians interested in the esports betting landscape, GRID’s position in the market should create confidence that betting fraud, match fixing and game manipulation will happen less and less.

When will North Carolina launch esports betting?

As stated, the North Carolina sports betting catalog does not currently include esports betting markets. That is a living document, as regulators have pointed out. As soon as sportsbooks receive approval to launch in North Carolina and tell regulators which esports betting markets they wish to offer, the NCLC will update the catalog.

With the 2024 Super Bowl off the table as a potential launch date, NCSharp has projected some potential launch dates, and a March Madness 2024 launch that includes some esports markets is still on the table.


Image Credit: Lee Jin-man / Ap Images

About the Author

Tyler Andrews

Tyler is the Managing Editor for, covering sports, sports law, and gambling for the Tar Heel State. He has also covered similar topics for PlayTexas, PlayGeorgia, PlayCA, PlayFlorida, PlayOhio, and PlayMA. Tyler’s current focus is North Carolina’s pathway to gaming legalization.