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The Phoenix Suns got NeRFed

Michael Rubloff

Michael Rubloff

Oct 29, 2023

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Phoenix Suns NeRF
Phoenix Suns NeRF


Radiance fields, a cutting-edge technology that can capture and render photorealistic 3D environments, seem to fit naturally with sports. Even a cursory look reveals the myriad ways in which they promise to revolutionize product offerings, bring fans unprecedented closeness to the action, enhance wayfinding, and discover more about their beloved teams and players.





Today we're seeing the first major sports team unveil a campaign utilizing radiance fields. The Phoenix Suns have released their Intro Video for the 2023 season that showcase the abilities of radiance fields courtesy of Kody Kurth and Profectum Media, powered by Luma AI. The video also features ODESZA's "Loyal".






Radiance fields offer a dynamic tool for crafting innovative marketing campaigns. Not only are these assets versatile and adaptable to various use cases, but they also present a cost-effective method for content creation. Moreover, the depth of content derived from just one capture significantly reduces the time players spend on such tasks.



Imagine the most iconic sports moments, frozen in photorealistic 3D. Imagine seeing Jordan dunking from the free throw line or hitting the flu game shot.



Collectible companies, such as Topps and Panini America should be actively exploring digital campaigns with virtual cards that can be collected and traded.



If you're a sports team, I would be thinking through your 3D strategy. How are you going to reach the next generation of fans and bring existing ones closer to the action? How do you drive more ticket sales and excite fans to come out to games? Here we can see radiance fields slot in and provide some answers.



This is just the outset of sports adopting radiance fields. We've seen examples of the MLB recently experimenting with virtual stadiums and interactive modalities for fans, but none of them will be able to come close to the photoreaslistic offerings of radiance fields. Fans will be able to walk onto the photorealistic infield grass, show where they were sitting at consequential games and moments.



The interaction of sports and radiance fields extends past just the teams and into the live event industry, itself. As I wrote earlier this year, there are a plethora of ways companies such as Ticketmaster, Stubhub, and SeatGeek can be leveraging radiance fields to help upsell tickets, provide wayfinding capabilities, and better understand their consumers behaviors.



The landscape of content creation, distribution, and interaction is undergoing a seismic shift. As the demand for immersive experiences grows, building photorealistic 3D content has become non-negotiable for teams, brands, and leagues. The Phoenix Suns have already embarked on this journey. The question is, are you ready to embrace the future of sports and entertainment?


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