NBA Taps Sportradar, Second Spectrum for Stats, Player Tracking Starting in 2017

The NBA has inked deals with Sportradar and Second Spectrum that will, respectively, expand the league’s global distribution of statistics and implement a state-of-the-art league-wide player-tracking system beginning with the 2017-18 season. The NBA began using player-tracking technology in 2009 and, in 2013, became the first U.S. professional sports league to use player tracking for every game.

The NBA will transition to Second Spectrum player tracking technology for the 2017/2018 season.

The NBA will transition to Second Spectrum player-tracking technology for the 2017-18 season.

“As the interest in — and analysis of — data continues to grow around the world, we look forward to furthering the depth and reach of NBA data and analytics through our partnership with Sportradar and Second Spectrum,” says Bill Koenig, president, global content and media distribution, NBA.

Sportradar will make statistical information for the NBA, WNBA, and NBA Development League more widely available than ever before, delivering data to fans, teams, media, and other data users in more than 80 countries and territories. At that time, Sportradar will become the league’s Official Provider of Real-Time NBA League Statistics.

Starting with the 2016-17 season, Sportradar will distribute NBA data and industry-standard audio/visual game feeds to gaming operators outside the U.S. where gaming is legal. The NBA will also incorporate Sportradar’s Integrity Services into its existing game-integrity–protection measures. These services monitor the global betting activity and trends across more than 550 operators worldwide and work with leading federations and leagues across 12 sports.

“This multifaceted partnership with the NBA presents a really exciting opportunity for Sportradar and for fans of NBA basketball worldwide,” explains Sportradar CEO Carsten Koerl. “We will be developing a full suite of innovative products, tools, and services that will bring the full depth of this exhilarating league’s data around the globe. I am also truly proud that our Integrity Services provide a tool to support the excellent work of federations and leagues internationally in protecting the integrity of sport.”

Second Spectrum will install its player-tracking system in all NBA arenas over the course of the upcoming season so that it will be fully functional by the 2017-18 season, when the company becomes the Official Optical Tracking Provider of the NBA. The company will provide advanced statistics — speed, distance, drives, paint touches, defensive impact — based on its technology for machine understanding of sports for comprehensive analysis of players and teams. Additionally, Second Spectrum will continue to work individually with teams and league partners on providing custom solutions and products based on player-tracking data.

“We’re thrilled to partner with a forward-thinking league like the NBA,” says Second Spectrum CEO Rajiv Maheswaran. “As a former professor, it’s great to live in a time when machines can deeply understand sports. We’re excited to bring this state-of-the-art technology to the entire league and its partners.”