Today, the Sacramento Kings announced a new charitable program – MiningForGood – made possible by the advanced data center and tech infrastructure at Golden 1 Center, the world’s most technologically advanced and sustainable arena. Through a partnership with global cryptocurrency leader, MiningStore.com, the team will install cryptocurrency mining machines in the only Tier 4 data center in a professional sports arena. The Kings are the first team in the world to mine digital currency.
For youngsters who are accustomed to mobile technology permeating almost every aspect of life, the use of VR makes perfect sense. It’s almost like playing a video game. “It’s 2018,” Happ said. “Basketball is ever-changing and there’s new ways to try and test guys. The best way is what we just did, playing basketball, but it’s an interesting concept. “It definitely fits us more than maybe some of the coaching staff, but I’ve never done virtual reality, but I’m excited to get this done.”
“It’s kind of like a video game with real people,” Penn State guard Tony Carr said at the combine. “It’s like a 360 thing. You turn around, look around. It’s pretty cool. “You put the glasses on and they give you different type of scenarios of where you are on the court and what decisions you would make, who you would pass the ball to and things like that.” The front office staff has enjoyed the reactions. “A lot of them have found it really cool, really new,” Pistons assistant video coordinator Jordan Brink said. “A lot of them have played video games and you find they are a little more comfortable in the headsets just because some of them have experienced a little bit of VR.”
Clearly, Durant has been dropping dimes of the literal kind. So we sat down with him to discuss his presence in Silicon Valley, his growing empire and whether his ultimate investment might come in the form of an owner’s suite. ESPN: How much smarter of a businessman are you than you were, say, two years ago? Kevin Durant: I have mentors like Ron Conway [early-stage Google and PayPal investor] and Ben Horowitz [co-founder of Silicon Valley venture capital fund Andreessen Horowitz] and good friendships with guys like Chris Lyons [chief of staff for Andreessen Horowitz]. I mean, you just go to dinner with these guys, hang out with them. You start to meet these types of people at games. It’s a little easier being here than saying, “Let’s meet up when I come in from Oklahoma.”
By far, the big hit of the predraft combine was the interview setup for the Pistons, who turned to virtual reality to challenge the potential draftees with 12 game-type decision questions. Players were required to don VR goggles, which transported them to the team’s practice facility and presented them with plays unfolding around them. Using a remote control, the players would answer the questions.
The National Basketball Association and Intel are teaming up on a joint effort to fund promising companies that blend technology with sports and entertainment. The new Emerging Technology Initiative will be a collaborative effort between a team at the NBA working closely with the Intel Capital group to identify challenges that may benefit from a technology solution or technology companies with services that can enhance how fans experience NBA games.