Advanced Hoops: NB-AI and the Future of AI in the League

NB-AI and the Future of AI in the League image

📖 Published on: April 12th, 2024

✍️ Updated: April 15th, 2024

⏳ 8 mins read


AI just can’t get enough in the next level of NBA as it continues to thrive at this point. We have seen how AI has aided advanced statistics, gathering data and processing it to deliver promising statistics and helping teams, players, and experts analyze the performances in a single game. But with the announcement of the NB-AI in the previous All-Star Game, will we even get to see AI sports betting make an appearance in the league as well?


What is NB-AI?


NB-AI was announced in the 2024 NBA All-Star Weekend image

NB-AI is a tool that features generative artificial intelligence that offers a promising experience in personalizing the live-viewing of each game in various digital platforms. This is a voice-activated assistant that processes live videos in real time – even capable of answering fan questions or transforming footage depending on the user commands. The AI uses both available data and incoming information to respond to various queries and even make predictions in a given game, which sets it apart from the conventional AI that we have seen over the years.


Just how transformative this AI has been? The demo featured NBA commissioner Adam Silver and San Antonio Spurs big man and runaway Rookie of the Year Victor Wembanyama during the All-Star Weekend, turning a live-game into an aesthetic version of a Spider-Man film. It even changed a game by the Indiana Pacers into a superhero style, turning players into cartoon players and even putting up comic book texts and much more immersive features.


NB-AI image


The All-Star Tech Summit in Indiana that time was a special phase for technological advancements in the NBA. We all know that the NBA is one of the most progressive entities in the sports world when it comes to technology. It is a no-brainer that the team has embraced many changes that have streamlined viewer experience, statistical analyses, and many more advancements over the years. We are not that far behind from seeing AI for sports betting emerge on that end.


How AI Has Emerged in the NBA Over the Years?


While we are yet to see the use of any sports betting AI in the NBA, it cannot be denied that AI has already become an emergent force in the league over the years. From time to time, more advancements have come into play with the impressive technological growth in the league. The NBA has always found ways to incorporate new experiences for both fans and players alike, with the In-Season Tournament being the latest on that trend.


Still, the success of the NBA has been accompanied by the emergence of AI in the league, and here are some of the big presence of that technology that you may not know.


Advanced Statistics


Advanced stats were introduced back in the 1996-97 season, but have spiked in terms of effectiveness and accuracy in the 2010s through the help of AI. Advanced analytics such as effective field goal percentage (eFG%), true shooting percentage (TS%), (on-court/off-court) plus–minus, adjusted plus-minus (APM), real plus/minus (RPM), player efficiency rating (PER), offense efficiency rating, offensive rating, defensive rating, similarity score, tendex, and player tracking are all included in the advanced stats that have been added on top of the base stats in the league.

NBA Advanced Stats image


Over the years, advanced statistics have evolved and helped experts analyze team and player performances down the stretch. From various notable performance trackers and even numbers that define a team’s efficiency and their pace, this all affects the voting for certain awards, such as the MVP. AI has aided the analysis of these advanced stats by piling up various information and making sure that the data are always available for reference by many experts.


Coach’s Challenge and Play Review


In the 2019-20 season, the NBA introduced the rule of Coach’s Challenge, which is to allow head coaches to contest and issue a protest over a certain call once per game. These only tackle personal fouls, out-of-bounds plays, and goaltending or basket interference calls. For the challenge to be issued, coaches must call a timeout – and it will be returned should the challenge end up successful. Starting in the 2023-24 season, the challenge was extended for each coach, earning an additional challenge if their first attempt is successful.


Coach's Challenge image


So where does AI play a role in this advancement in the NBA? Well, the Coach’s Challenge forces the NBA to review a specific play and ensure that they get the best angles available for further analysis. Thanks to AI’s fast processing power, we have seen how efficient the reviews have been, further allowing NBA review staffs to come up with a sound call that would benefit the integrity of the game. This says a lot about the way the Coach’s Challenge has evolved in years thanks to its promising efficiency.


NBA Launchpad


The NBA Launchpad has been the big reason why there are many technological advancements in the league so far. Over the years, the Launchpad has proven to be a successful and a strategic approach in further advancing the league, enriching the NBA ecosystem with more innovations in the long run. The league accepts various applications from multiple companies and filter finalists with the help of NBA and subject-matter experts in the game.


NBA Launchpad image


Selected companies will be given a chance to complete their projects in an R&D work within an NBA property for six months. By the start of the NBA Summer League, the companies will then present their results and see how the league can integrate their new innovations in the game. As soon as the league approves the project, the NBA will evaluate how the technology will be applied to the benefit of the game and come up with terms with the hopes of building a broader and strategic partnership in the long run.


What to Expect in the NBA with AI in the Years to come?


There’s no telling what the future holds in the NBA with the way they are going right now. It is clear that they are still yet to integrate anything that relates to the sports betting world, but one can say that there are indeed a lot of possibilities for an AI sports betting bot to enter the fray in years to come. Who knows, we may get to see how predictive AI soon make its appearance on the big stage.


GambleAI image


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Learn more about our AI sports betting bot here at GambleSpot! On top of that, we provide you with top-notch news, blogs, betting guides, tournament previews, game analyses, and many other sports-related content that will give you a chance at winning in your bets!

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