As sports betting in America grows, it goes without saying that the effective use of data is integral to the smooth evolution of the American betting framework.
SBCAmericas spoke to Dr. Laila Mintas, the US Deputy President at Sportradar, who analysed the role data can play in ensuring integrity is maintained in the US sports betting market, as well as how it can help satisfy the desires of US sports punters.
SBC: Given that Sportradar provides data for many of the main US media firms, what type of data is it that really engages the attention of American sports fans?
Laila Mintas: We pride ourselves on the speed and depth of our data. Whether fans need traditional stats to power a box score or player tracking stats with XY coordinates, we offer the right solution to our media partners such as Facebook, Twitter, Bleacher Report, Associated Press among others. The data that really engages fans now is the next-level statistics that go beyond the traditional box score and data that provides deeper storytelling.
SBC: Could you further explain the role data can play in ensuring integrity in American sports?
LM: Sportradar as well as being a leading provider of technologically advanced sports data products to the betting and media industries is the global leader for providing betting integrity related services to sports governing bodies and leagues, betting regulators, law enforcement agencies and government authorities. We advocate that there should be a bet monitoring solution centrally collating and analysing bets placed at all licensed operators in real-time and cross referencing this with international betting market integrity data and analysis to get the complete global picture. Such a solution should identify and report suspicious betting activity to betting regulators and sports governing bodies and leagues in real-time.
SBC: How important is it that Leagues and betting operators get the same levels of accuracy with their data?
LM: It’s extremely important that bookmakers get quick, reliable and accurate data. All sports betting is reliant on fast and accurate data. Without it, bookmakers wouldn’t be able to price events or settle bets. As technology continues to become more and more advanced, so too has the sophistication of the data provision to keep up with market demands.
SBC: Sportradar work with each of the different leagues in the US, can you explain a little how the required data for each league varies?
LM: Core play by play statistics are largely similar across all leagues (i.e. schedules, real time scores and player statistics). What we have seen in player tracking technology has resulted in differing data collection and therefore distribution. In the NFL we have exclusive access to the Next Gen Stats which are X,Y coordinate data from microchips in the players shoulder pads. In the NBA we have exclusive access to player tracking data collected from cameras in arena. The productization and distribution varies based on many factors which are constantly evolving and being improved.
SBC: In the UK, as punters have favoured betting on individual players we have the seen the rise of player data, do you think this is something that will be desired in the US?
LM: As the intricacies in betting become clearer in the US, we think that betting on individual players will become prevalent; the rise of Daily Fantasy Sports in the US can attest to that. I think our role in providing the individual player data will be something that the Leagues, media partners and consumers will want.