At the NBA restart at Disney Wide World of Sports, fans aren’t in attendance at the game, except virtually, by use of video screens that show their faces at the game while they sit at home. It’s a cool thing. Here’s the Toronto Star talking about the virtual Raptor fan situation:
There are about 320 “seats” occupied by the visages of fans that, in the case of the Raptors, will be chosen from the team’s season-ticket base of about 15,000 when the playoffs begin later this month.
For now, team employees are working through the inevitable wrinkles in a process that’s brand new. But they expect to see regular “fans” at post-season games, meaning the likes of Superfan Nav Bhatia and global ambassador Drake might be there — so to speak.
“We’re seeing familiar faces on those screens, and who knows what it’ll evolve to here two months from now” when the Raptors may be playing for their second straight championship, Nurse said. “So I don’t want to discount the home-court thing quite yet.”
The fans have become a quirky sidebar to the actual games as the NBA tries different ways to guarantee spectator involvement.
I thought about suggesting adding more video screens and more fans, but the whole fun of being a virtual fan is that the virtual fan gets to see his or her face on the actual broadcast. If the video screens are high up in the air, away from the court, those fans won’t be visible on the TV broadcast, and that’s not as fun for them.
In other words, the NBA is doing this correctly.