The Ultimate Dream Team

Feature Article | August 2, 2012 by Heather McIlvaine


Someone might want to give Kobe Bryant and LeBron James a heads-up. The National Basketball Association (NBA) is working with SAP on a new online offering that will put years of official NBA statistical information at fans’ fingertips, thanks to the real-time data platform, SAP HANA. Perhaps it will even settle, once and for all, the debate on who would win in a head-to-head matchup: the original Dream Team from the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, or the star-studded squad at the 2012 Games in London.

The new offering is scheduled to launch during the 2012-2013 season and will be available to all users on the league’s official website, Previously, only NBA employees and select media members could access this kind of statistical information. Now, fans around the world can easily find and search decades of data to compare their favorite players and teams across seasons.

In-memory on the court

Powering the whole offering is SAP HANA. Despite the massive amounts of data that this project entails, SAP’s real-time platform delivers the right piece of information to users instantly. SAP BusinessObjects Explorer and SAP Data Services provide for data quality. And SAP BusinessObjects BI solutions give users the necessary analytic tools to compare players, track a team’s progress, and explore the history of the NBA.

Next Page: SAP brings NBA to your smartphone



Fans, of course, will want access to these statistics from anywhere – preferably courtside, so they can calculate the probability of their team bouncing back in the second half as it happens. The updated NBA Game Time mobile app will make this possible with a new statistics section supported by SAP technology. The app is available for free in the iTunes App Store, Android Market, and Windows Phone.

Are the women up next?

For the moment, the NBA’s new statistical offering only applies to the men’s league. The launch of this project, however, is also the start of a new multiyear partnership between the NBA and SAP that encompasses the Women’s National Basketball Association and the NBA Development League. So perhaps there are more projects to come from SAP, the Official Business Analytics Software Partner of the NBA.


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