Artificial Intelligence Advances In Sports. The automatic data analysis provided by companies such as Stats Perform is now indispensable in competitions as important as the NBA, the premier basketball league in the United States and around the world. Companies of this type began collecting large volumes of information on games, plays, and athletes more than a decade ago and, today, their activity is fully established in this industry.
It is unthinkable for a top-level team to develop its activity without having several engineers specialized in this task on its payroll. Something similar happens in the other major sports, such as soccer, which is generally considered the king. Most Premier League clubs in the United Kingdom already had one or two of these professionals in their service in the 2010s. Now, this figure is typically in excess of a dozen.
The rate at which experts are being hired has increased considerably over the last three years, according to the industry. The explanation is that firms such as Stats Perform itself have the technology to determine how a team will play in the next match. This predictive modeling is based on millions of details that, according to its promoters, no person would be able to process. In these formulas, moreover, very different facets are taken into account: from defense to counterattacks.
Some factors are interrelated, but others are relatively independent, and everything counts, say their creators. As one of the Stats’ vice presidents, Ben Mackriell, acknowledges, the teams invite them to go further and further. He admits that one of the questions they are asked most often is: “How will this player I’m interested in signing for my team and for the league as a whole?
In this executive’s opinion, this is one of the areas where clubs are getting the most benefit from their investment in artificial intelligence. Their work begins with interviews with athletes, trainers, coaches, coaches of various sports: field hockey, tennis, golf… In this way, the analysts find out what their needs, concerns, and desires are. Of course, not all problems are solved with the same solutions.
The more specific the tool designed by engineers and computer scientists, the greater the satisfaction of all the players involved in this complex equation. Until recently, reluctance was high and deep. However, the snowball effect is undeniable. As soon as a club observes the qualitative leap made by one of its competitors and the benefits derived from it, it adopts the innovation and tries to overtake its opponents in order to continue winning, thus improving the athletes and also the data scientists. No time or space for pauses or breaks.
¡Stay tune! Go and visit our blog. New articles every week.