NBA, NextVR to livestream weekly NBA games in VR

Image: NextVR

NBA Digital and NextVR have reached an agreement and will be livestreaming one NBA game a week in VR.

Viewers willing to drop $200 on a yearly subscription to NBA League Pass will be able to watch a 180-degree livestream of the featured games using a Samsung Gear VR headset. Later this season NextVR will open up compatibility with other VR headsets. According to Engadget, there will be some 360-degree content available.

The first VR game of the season will be the Oct. 27 matchup between the Sacramento Kings and the San Antonio Spurs at the Golden 1 Center. That game will be available to all as part of a free trial of NBA League Pass.

NextVR says the broadcasts will be “fully produced with dedicated announcers, multiple unmanned camera angles and optimized graphics.” The game breaks will be filled with in-venue entertainment, behind-the-scenes footage from the arena and VR-specific commentary.

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The deal with NBA Digital for this season comes after last year NextVR and Turner Sports partnered on a live virtual reality broadcast of an opening night between the Golden State Warriors and the New Orleans Pelicans at Oracle Arena. In addition to the live game presentation, the Warriors ring ceremony was presented in virtual reality.

NextVR has been working with other sports on VR broadcasts. At this year’s PGA U.S. Open, NextVR set up cameras on holes nine, 17 and 18, and had the option to move the cameras to capture video at holes 10 and 12 as well.