The National Hockey League has dropped the puck on a new deal with SAP that allows the world’s most exciting sport on ice to keep track of its stats within SAP’s HANA Enterprise Cloud offering. The NHL believes that its new multi-year deal with SAP can transform the experience of hockey fans by giving them fresh insights into data points collected throughout the game.
Sports and technology analysts believe that the introduction of SAP’s HANA could transform the way people have traditionally viewed hockey. By turning hockey into a data driven, stats-centric game, the NHL could win over more fans while simultaneously engaging its current fan base by providing them with a personalized experience through the NHL app and website. With the deal, SAP has won the rights to call itself the official software provider of the NHL.
The NHL’s COO John Collins says, “Hockey is extremely fast-paced with very little stoppage in play, which results in many aspects of the game failing to show up in the box score.” Collins adds, “The new NHL stats platform goes beyond data to offer insights that will help avid fans go deeper and help casual fans understand the game better. There are also unlimited storytelling opportunities as we provide our fans with a personalized and interactive experience.”
The National Hockey League’s first season was the 1917-1918 season. SAP’s HANA will become the new home for NHL data starting with that season. That stats section on NHL.com is expected to change incrementally over the next few years. The first redesign was released a few days ago and so far, fans reactions have been positive. The stats interface will use cloud to generate features such as a playoff prediction tool and a power index that ranks teams. John Collins says that the redesign of NHL’s stats page will allow fans to “compare players and teams spanning all generations.”
Quentin Clark from SAP commented on the NHL deal saying, “With the new NHL stats platform, we are going to deliver real-time insight at the player and team level that has never been seen before in hockey. Together with the NHL, we will continue to look for new opportunities to help innovate and improve the game, as the next generation of hockey begins.”