If you want to see how the NBA imagines its future, don’t bother watching the court. Instead, squint into the rafters and try to find the six tiny cameras that are part of the SportVU tracking system being implemented league-wide this season. Derived from Israeli missile-tracking technology, SportVU records a player’s every dribble, pass, and off-ball movement 72,000 times a contest – that’s 25 times per second. The big idea: Motion-capture software sophisticated enough to defend against an incoming Scud should be able to distinguish between a lethal Stephen Curry three-point bomb and just another errant Monta Ellis long-range brick.

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