With just three days to go until the first game in Premier Lacrosse League (PLL) history, NBC Sports and the PLL today unveiled production innovations and enhancements that will showcase the sport and its world-class athletes in ways that fans have never seen before. The innovations will be emphasized prominently throughout all NBC Sports broadcasts and live streams, highlighting and enhancing numerous elements of the game such as player communication, strategy, and shot speed.
The inaugural PLL season begins this Saturday, June 1, at 1 p.m. ET at Gillette Stadium, available exclusively on NBC Sports Gold’s “Premier Lacrosse League Pass.” The PLL’s opening weekend coverage at Gillette Stadium continues Saturday at 4 p.m. ET with Whipsnakes-Chaos on NBC Sports Gold, with the first live televised game airing on Sunday, June 2, at 1:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN as Atlas LC takes on Redwoods LC.
“We are constantly looking for ways to innovate our programs and create the most enjoyable viewing experience possible for fans at home,” said Dan Steir, SVP, Production, NBC Sports. “This is an amazing sport featuring incredible athletes and we think our production approach will showcase the sport of lacrosse in ways that will bring fans closer to the game.”
“This summer, the PLL will be televised live to millions of homes across the country,” says PLL Co-Founder and Atlas LC midfielder, Paul Rabil. “NBC’s innovative broadcast and technological advancements will showcase our players and game in ways that have never been done in the history of pro sports. This weekend marks a new era for lacrosse, and we couldn’t be more excited to bring the world closer to the game.”
The production innovations includes:
- Player-to-Commentator Communication: For the first time in the sport of lacrosse, NBC Sports is implementing player-to-commentator communication for every game of the PLL season. Two players on the field, focusing on the goalie and attack positions, will be able to communicate with NBC Sports PLL broadcast team of Paul Burmeister (host), Brendan Burke (play-by-play), Ryan Boyle (analyst) and Chantel McCabe (reporter) throughout the game as the ball transitions up the field to give viewers unmatched game perspective from an inside source. Partnering with Gubser & Schnakenberg, LLC (GSC), these innovative communication applications will be installed via the goalie’s helmet. GSC has over 50 years of experience providing communication products for the NFL and NCAA, among other sports leagues.
- Shot Speed: In conjunction with SMT (formerly SportsMEDIA Technology), there will be an array of sensors at each end of the field for each PLL game to track shot speed from a variety of angles, utilizing SMT’s lacrosse intelligence engine to provide real-time speed tracking. This technology has never been used before in the sport of lacrosse.
- Players as Commentators: Also new for the sport of lacrosse, NBC Sports will have a player from one of the six PLL teams not playing join host Paul Burmeister to call a portion of the game from the field. This inside look will allow fans to meet and learn more about their favorite players from across the league, while hearing insights from active players as games unfold.
- Skycam: Typically utilized only three times per year in the sport of lacrosse, NBC Sports will implement the use of Skycam for multiple games throughout the PLL’s season. Skycam is a computer-controlled, cable-suspended camera system that is maneuvered over the field, providing “video game-like” angles to TV coverage for viewers at home. Skycam is most often used in NFL broadcasts; and, while it has also been implemented in the NBA, NHL, NASCAR, PGA, and NCAA basketball, Skycam has only ever been used in lacrosse for the NCAA Men’s Semifinals and Championship game.
- Mic’d Up: Each week during the PLL season, various players and coaches across the six teams will have microphones wired to them so that fans can hear on-field commentary throughout the games.
Comprehensive coverage of the inaugural 2019 PLL season continues throughout the summer across NBC Sports, with three games on NBC and 16 on NBCSN. All 39 of the PLL’s games – including All-Star Weekend and Skills Competition – will be live streamed on NBC Sports Gold’s “Premier Lacrosse League Pass”, with 20 games exclusively for subscribers. For the PLL’s entire 2019 schedule, click here.
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ABOUT THE PREMIER LACROSSE LEAGUE
The Premier Lacrosse League (PLL) brings the sport of lacrosse to a national stage for the first time through a tour-based model, complete with the best players the game has to offer. Co-founded by lacrosse superstar, philanthropist, and investor Paul Rabil and his brother, serial entrepreneur and investor, Mike Rabil, the Premier Lacrosse League is backed by an investment group comprised of The Raine Group, Creative Artists Agency (CAA), The Chernin Group, and Blum Capital. The PLL season will begin in June 2019, with six teams, embarking on a 14-week season that concludes with a playoff and PLL championship game. The PLL season will be distributed through an exclusive media-rights agreement with NBC Sports Group. For more information, visit PremierLacrosseLeague.com, and follow on social media: