Amazon Web Services is broadening its reach across the professional sports landscape, announcing a new partnership with the National Hockey League Wednesday to be the official cloud, artificial intelligence, and machine learning infrastructure provider for the league.
AWS CEO Andy Jassy, recently named as the future successor to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos — and also a part-owner of the Seattle Kraken — said AWS will help the NHL with its digital transformation. This includes helping the league automate video processing and content delivery in the cloud; leveraging the Puck and Player Tracking (PPT) System; and building an enterprise video platform to aggregate video, data, and related applications into one central repository.
The goal is to better capture details of the game for fans, teams and media partners, enable easier search and retrieval of archival video footage, and give broadcasters instant access to NHL content for syndication and licensing. The NHL is also turning to AWS to deliver new in-game analyses, predictions, and video highlights to enhance mobile, online, and broadcast experiences.
It’s a move similar in fashion to what AWS does with the National Football League and its “Next Gen Stats.” Amazon also has a multi-year streaming deal with the NFL.
Jassy joined NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to discuss the new partnership before the broadcast of Wednesday night’s Boston Bruins vs. New York Rangers game.
Enjoyed chatting w/ @CommissionerNHL to announce how @AWScloud will support the @NHL in its digital transformation. Look forward to seeing goal & faceoff probability stats in action in an upcoming @SeattleKraken game 🙂 #AWS #machinelearning https://t.co/30i2yrtGnY
— Andy Jassy (@ajassy) February 11, 2021
“AWS’s state-of-the-art technology and services will provide us with capabilities to deliver analytics and insights that highlight the speed and skill of our game to drive deeper fan engagement,” Bettman said in a news release. On NBC he predicted “unlimited growth potential” as new ways to see and understand the game will attract more fans.
Jassy, a longtime hockey fan who also is part of the ownership group of Seattle’s new NHL franchise, said in his tweet that he looks forward to new stats in action in an upcoming Kraken game. The team is slated to begin play next season.
He spoke to NBC about AWS’s machine-learning capabilities and how new stats such as goal predictability or faceoff-win probability will change the viewing experience for fans at home.
The new analytics leveraging AWS will be introduced throughout the upcoming season.