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Meet Jovanni Vera

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jovanni Vera.

Jovanni, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Growing up, I was always a competitive person. Played soccer and did karate for many years just to compete. I would always play video games in between karate and soccer practice so I started to see if I could compete in Gaming as well. By the age of 12, I started competing online and locally at game stops around Miami playing games like Halo 2/3 and the Call of Duty series. That passion grew and I was able to make it as a professional in 2016 in a game called Rainbow Six Siege. I competed at the professional level for a year and a half. After playing pro, I started doing little things online for the gaming community like managing/coaching teams as well as personal training for players. Later on, in February of 2019, I became aware of ROK esports via Instagram and we started to talk back in forth on how I can become a part of the team and grow out Miami Esports. Ever since then, I have helped create Local tournaments from small bi-weekly tournaments in various games to a Huge gaming event that took place in Wynwood called “The Ultimate Gamer” which had to take home prizes of $15,000 for each game. I have also helped create an Esport league for Middle/high school students in various Charter schools around the nation. I also created an actual esports club, at the school I work at, where students can learn the business side of Esports and also get to speak to individuals that made Esports their fulltime Job.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
There is no smooth road in esports. Whoever tells you that is lying. Being that esports is gaming, all the negative connotations come with it. Gaming is seen as violence. It is a business, you have to do everything as you would any other business. Building a market/community from the ground up.

Please tell us about ROK esports – what should we know?
I am one of the Co-Founders of ROK esports. I handle things from the creative side like Marketing, Photography, Videography as well as I am the PR/Sponsorship director. ROK creates a platform for people that want to take gaming to the next level and compete locally. I am proud of the fact that we were able to create this and give people a chance to socialize while gaming. The thing that sets us apart from all the other esports tournament organizers out there is that we do our events in Bars/Breweries.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
The team that deserves the most credit is all of ROK. Without them, ROK wouldn’t exist from the tournament organizers that run the events. To the marketing team that sets up all the social media. To our videographers/edits that make us look nice. To the people that come to our events to compete and just hangout.

I have had many mentors throughout the years. One being Henry Caballero that allows me to help locally to start learning about running events. To even friends online that throughout the years have shown me the business side of esports like Anthony Muraco who is the Director of Operations for the Vancouver Titans/Seattle Surge. Derrick “youFamousEnough” Franklin who is the General Manager/Coach of the Miami Heat “HeatCheck Gaming” 2k league team. Hector Rosario, Owner of Flipsid3 Tactics, that signed me to play Professional. Roger Caneda who was the first person to actually give me a chance with an old team called the Miami Flamingos.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Francisco Suarez @FL_Phyence (for the picture of me)
Jovi Vera @jovitakespics (for the rest)

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