Over the last several years, the concept of virtual reality (VR), has taken a toll in technological advancements around the globe. While professional sports have begun to dip their toes into the possibility of using VR to their benefit, the NBA has seemingly gone all-in on the matter.
For League Pass subscribers, the NBA is allowing for 27 regular season games to be streamed through the NextVR application. Through the app, using a Samsung Gear VR or Google Daydream headset, consumers will be eligible to access the “Screening Room”, which allows users to pick and choose which League Pass game they wish to view within virtual reality.
In the near future, more VR headsets will be included to cooperate with the League Pass, as long as you purchase a platform that is based off of Microsoft. Inserted within the application is “live infographics”, as well as “dynamic stats”, both of which are new features in order to reel in a larger audience.
While a League Pass subscription can become costly to some ($200), this is one of the most historic advancements within the history of sports. In result, is there a potential downside to the product?
While the NBA has been able to reel in anywhere between 14,000-21,000 fans per home game this past season, the advancement of virtual reality may be viewed as a minor hindrance to future ticket sales for front offices. In fact, according to an ESPN report, fourteen franchises winded up losing money during the 2016-17 season.
On the other hand, the advancement of technology within sports is staggering, and could benefit the NBA as a whole. The NBA has emerged as the first professional sports league to invest within VR, and back in 2016, both sides witnessed a major upside.
The League Pass is scheduled to feature all 30 teams, according to the following dates (all times p.m., EST):
- Dallas at Houston (Oct. 21, 8)
- New York at Boston (Oct. 24, 7:30)
- Phoenix at Brooklyn (Oct. 31, 7:30)
- Miami at Los Angeles Clippers (Nov. 5, 3:30)
- Memphis at Los Angeles Lakers (Nov. 5, 9:30)
- San Antonio at Dallas (Nov. 14, 8:30)
- Cleveland at Detroit (Nov. 20, 7)
- Sacramento at Golden State (Nov. 27, 10:30)
- Golden State at New Orleans (Dec. 4, 8)
- Oklahoma City at New York (Dec. 16, 7:30)
- New Orleans at Washington (Dec. 19, 7)
- Memphis at Golden State (Dec. 30, 8:30)
- Golden State at Los Angeles Clippers (Jan. 6, 3:30)
- Cleveland at Minnesota (Jan. 8, 8)
- Dallas at Denver (Jan. 16, 9)
- New York at Los Angeles Lakers (Jan. 21, 3:30)
- Minnesota at Atlanta (Jan. 29, 7:30)
- Chicago at Sacramento (Feb. 5, 10)
- Memphis at Oklahoma City (Feb. 11, 7)
- Orlando at Philadelphia (Feb. 24, 5)
- Houston at Utah (Feb. 26, 9)
- Los Angeles Lakers at Denver (March 9, 9)
- Cleveland at Portland (March 15, 10)
- Oklahoma City at Toronto (March 18, 1)
- San Antonio at Milwaukee (March 25, 3:30)
- Sacramento at Memphis (April 6, 8)
- Indiana at Charlotte (April 8, 1)
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