From the comfort of your living room sofa or a seat in the stands, basketball, at least compared to a number of other sports, has remained relatively untouched by technology. While this may be true in terms of the number of times technology appears to halt or stop play, basketball has still embraced technology in a big way. Whether it is on or off the court, technology is shaping the development of the sport right before our very eyes, even if sometimes it is slightly out of sight. With so much on the line, this article has been put together in order to explore the inner and outer workings of technology within the sport we all love so dearly. So, without further ado, let’s get started…
Let’s start with the court. In NBA basketball, the implementation of instant replay has been done so with a huge element of care and precision. Criticism of the use of technology in other sports is something that has been difficult to escape over the last two decades. Whether its usage has been deemed too little or too much, controversy is never far away.
With the use of Instant Replay, Basketball has paved the way for how technology can be used in a way that still appreciates the natural flow of a sport. Since as far back as 2002, officials have been using instant replay to determine if a shot was released before the buzzer. Since then, Instant Replay has been used to analyze brawls or flagrant fouls, whether a score was two or three points, and, amongst other things, which team should be awarded possession after a ball becomes out-of-bounds.
The main point here is that those responsible have been careful to get the most out of the technology available, without interfering in the game to the point that it is detrimental to the rhythm of the game.
Moving off court, let’s start with how technology has enhanced the fan experience. It is clear and obvious for any long-term fan of the sport to see how the exponential growth of technology has resulted in more advanced cameras and better quality coverage, so much in fact that many fans are known to prefer watching from home rather than the arena.
Furthermore, the internet has provided fans with an abundance of highlight packages as well as news updates, podcasts and statistics. It allows fans from all over the world to access and feel part of the community that makes up whatever team it is they call their own.
While sports in general, has been around for a long time: the union of the internet, smartphones, decentralized blockchain-based operating systems, such as Tron (TRX), and online sporting has created a way for fans to engage with basketball on a whole other level. Now, when basketball fans are searching for and considering basketball’s next important matches, they can do so in a participatory way.
The introduction of SportVU cameras to the arenas of the NBA has truly brought the league into the digital age. It has revolutionized both how statistics are measured and general gameplay is analyzed.
Today, statistics are no longer limited to points scored and fouls made. Instead, we can now see a host of detailed stats including where, when and how points are scored, the shooting percentage of any individual player, how many assists a player has and even what shooting percentage a defender restricts opposition players to at the rim.
Throw wearable technology into the fold as well, and you can quickly see how every team has a complete understanding of every element of every player’s condition and performance on a daily basis.
The Bottom Line
Basketball acts as an example to any and all other sports in terms of how to get the most out of modern-day technology, while remaining respectful to the sport itself.
Yes, we should take advantage of the technology available to us, but there is a lot to learn from how basketball has pushed itself into the modern era.