Monday July 18th, 2016

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Pokémon GO, a new mobile augmented reality game, has swept the nation with its recent success. Plenty of people have caught on to this gaming craze, catching Pokémon and collecting items to raise these virtual pets. Even Sacramento Kings owner Vivek Ranadivé has taken note of the game’s sudden popularity. He decided to host the first ever NBA Pokémon GO meet up at the Sleep Train Arena. The event took place at Sleep Train Arena, but once the Golden 1 Center is completed in October, fans will be able to enjoy the game on a fast network.

“We want to be able to host e-sports, drone racing, and stuff like that,” Kings CTO Ryan Montoya told Wired. “And for that you need a lot of bandwidth. They can come here and launch a product, and it’ll work.”

Other NBA teams have already begun emulating the Kings’ attempt to attract Pokémon GO fans to their venues. For instance, the Houston Rockets recently hosted a Pokémon GO meet up at their Toyota Center. Although the team’s facility is not as high-tech as the Golden 1 Center, the Rockets decided to offer lucrative discounts on their merchandise for GO players. If the visitors made any purchase, their name would be entered in a raffle for the chance to win an autographed basketball.

The Rockets are not the only Texas team to catch Pokémon GO fever. The Dallas Mavericks also tweeted to their fans to join the organization at AT&T Plaza for their own Pokémon GO meetup.

Some credit has to be given to the Kings for being the first team to take advantage of this trend in the NBA. This organization seems to be at the forefront of digital and tech innovations.

Just about a month ago, the Kings unveiled their new jerseys using a 360-degree virtual reality camera to allow fans to take a look at the uniforms in an interesting way.

It seems like Willie Cauley-Stein loves to act as the Kings’ poster boy for revealing cool new innovations the team has to share. Hopefully we continue to see more innovations emerge from this bold and original NBA franchise.

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