Longtime Charlotte Hornets broadcaster Stephanie Ready is branching into the cutting edge of new technology.
Ready will do color analysis for TNT for a handful of games the rest of the season on a virtual-reality platform. Ready’s first game was a Golden State Warriors-Los Angeles Clippers matchup. She is scheduled for six more games the rest of this season.
Viewers need virtual reality headsets to view this experience. It creates an in-arena view, where a fan isn’t restricted to one camera angle on the game. Ready received permission from Fox Sports South, which holds Hornets TV rights, to do these games. TNT and the NBA are doing this in partnership with Intel.
“I’m extremely lucky; these are national broadcasts and TNT is the best with doing these games,” Ready said Tuesday. “For them to choose me to do these games, I was extremely humbled and honored. And thrilled: The technology is mind-blowing and way above my head.
“You get things off-ball that during a normal telecast you might not be able to see. For our broadcast, if the ball is on the right side of the court, and the coach on the left side and is jumping out of his seat, you can see that happening in real time.
“You can see 360 degrees around, as if you’re sitting in that arena. When you put that headset on, it’s jaw-dropping.”
Ready missed the Hornets’ home game in Brooklyn and the road game in Washington last week to do the Warriors-Clippers game (she is traveling to game sites for these VR telecasts).
Ready started out doing sideline reporting when the NBA returned to Charlotte in 2004 as the expansion Bobcats. She later did analysis in a three-person team with fellow analyst Dell Curry and play-by-play announcer Eric Collins. This season, she returned to a sideline position during games, but still provides some analysis on air.
Bonnell: 704-358-5129: @rick_bonnell