Comstock's Magazine

Kings Utilizing the Best in Tech

Comstock's Magazine chats with Ryan Montoya – the team's senior vice president of strategy, innovation and technology – about the team's burgeoning use of technology and what fans can expect heading into the new ESC.
by Katie Cracchiolo
Digital Specialist

“Ryan Montoya’s task is clear, straightforward and possibly, well, impossible,” wrote Kevin McKenna of Comstock’s Magazine, “Turn the Sacramento Kings into the most technologically adept sports franchise in the world."

Montoya collaborates directly with the ownership group to ensure the team is making strides to deliver “a quality fan experience, cutting-edge player evaluations and a host of other ways to integrate the NBA into the digital world.”

“I work for the smartest tech guys in the world,” Montoya states. With a tech-minded leadership group already in place Montoya says it’s easy to continue to attract the best of the best, noting the recent hiring of NBA analytics pro Dean Oliver to assist with player performance.

In the article, Montoya also shares that he and his technology team throw around new ideas every day. Many of which don’t make it pass the testing stage, but trying out every idea “allows for the occasional breakthrough.”

“The Kings were the first U.S. professional sports team to invite players and fans to try out Google Glass wearable technology, to accept the digital currency Bitcoin for purchases and to allow camera-laden drones to zip around the arena,” adds McKenna. Following each of these “firsts” Montoya found himself answering calls from other professional teams, providing insight into how the organization made it all happen.

"The attention gained worldwide has served to seal the Kings’ reputation as the organization where high-tech happens," continues McKenna. Though construction for the new Entertainment and Sports Center (ESC) is still in progress, it doesn’t stop the Kings from trying out new tech toys.

#ESCDroneCam 1/22/15 from Sacramento ESC on Vimeo.

Using the unique view provided by drones and virtual and augmented reality the franchise is able to showcase construction progress made in real time, and also highlight the flare this new ESC will bring to Sacramento.

Experiments aside, Montoya concludes that the purpose of all this technology is to provide the fans with the best, most "seamless" possible in-arena experience.

“You can do all the analytics, use fast data, but if a fan has a great experience, that is the best information to have.”

Read Complete Article: Create The Future. Now.

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