Raptors-Lakers game to get virtual reality treatment with NextVR

Virtual reality has the potential to revolutionize sport, experts say.
Virtual reality has the potential to revolutionize sport, experts say.

Raptors fans who long for the courtside experience will have the opportunity to enjoy the next best thing this season.

Toronto’s road game against the Los Angeles Lakers on Nov. 4 will be one of several NBA games available with NextVR, a virtual reality company that is enhancing the viewing experience with its impressive product.

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Capturing the action from several different vantage points throughout the arena, NextVR operates as a feature on the NBA’s League Pass, offering an enhanced experience for those who pine to get closer to the game.

NextVR typically uses eight cameras set up throughout the stadium: From the sideline, above the court, and two behind each backboard are a few of the more prominent locations.

The company also employs a production crew that captures locker-room interviews and behind-the-scenes footage that run during commercial breaks, allowing NextVR to provide much more than just a simulated courtside view.

“Our show directors really pride themselves on moving your POV (point of view) with the action, without disrupting presence,” said David Cole, NextVR CEO, in an interview with Digital Trends“In addition to the produced show, we also offer the ability to choose your own camera position in almost all of our experiences.”

Virtual reality has long been considered the next frontier for televised sports consumption, augmenting the experience in ways that can practically place you in attendance at Scotiabank Arena. And while NextVR only has Toronto covered for one game this season, curious Raptors fans will have the opportunity to get one step closer to their favourite team.

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