New iPad app will give NHL coaches real-time stats during games

“NHL coaches will soon have access to more than 60 different real-time individual and team statistics on iPads positioned on the bench during games through an app developed by the League, SAP and Apple,” Dan Rosen writes for the National Hockey League. “The SAP/NHL Coaching Insights App for iPad will serve as a complement to the three iPads already on the bench that provide coaches with real-time video. The app is expected to debut League-wide after the All-Star break. [The NHL All-Star Game will be played on Saturday, January 26th.]

“The app is designed for coaches only. There will be one iPad Pro on the bench at every game and one for every video coach in the NHL. The iPad Pros, which will put the real-time information at coaches’ fingertips thanks to its easy-to-use multi-touch interface and portability, will be managed and stored by the League, but each team will have its own account and the NHL will not have access to the customization of the stats by each team,” Rosen writes. “The SAP technology, specifically SAP Cloud Platform with SAP HANA, plays an integral role as the processing power that translates all in-game hockey data from the arena and the NHL’s system to the app. ‘It’s all about the coaches, and it’s really the assistant coaches who are giving information to the head coach,’ NHL director of digital business development Chris Foster said. ‘Specifically, it’s the coaches on the headset talking to the video room who are then giving the information to the head coach.'”

NHL/SAP app for Apple iPad Pro to debut League-wide after All-Star break
NHL/SAP app for Apple iPad Pro to debut League-wide after All-Star break

“On the app, face-offs are broken down by success rate per zone and side of the ice, against specific players and a color-coded visual graphic for how a player has done in his past five face-offs. For time on ice, there is a customizable threshold coaches can input for each player, essentially the amount of minutes he is expected to play in that particular game. If a player goes over the expected minutes, the graphic turns red so coaches can quickly see that information,” Rosen writes. “The app is customizable for coaches to give priority to the team and player stats they feel they need most. A deeper dive into the app will give the coaches access to an array of team and player statistics, including shot attempts, unblocked shot attempts, chances for and against, and success rate on shootouts with forehanded shots and backhanded shots, a potentially useful tool for goalies too.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Obviously, the NHL makes smarter technology choices for its coaches than the NFL.

Without Microsoft paying off the NFL every year to the tune on hundreds of million of dollars, nobody outside of Redmond would have a Surface tablet.

NFL extends deal to saddle league with Microsoft Surface tablets for 6th year – December 5, 2017
Microsoft’s defective Surface scandal intensifies – August 15, 2017
Leaked Microsoft memo reveals failure-prone Surface Book suffers from high return rates – August 14, 2017
New England Patriots coach Belichick on Microsoft Surface tablets: ‘They’re just too undependable for me’ – October 19, 2016
New England Patriots’ coach Belichick: Microsoft Surface breakdowns are common – January 26, 2016
Microsoft pays $400 million for product placement; Surface tablets fail during Patriots vs. Broncos playoff game – January 24, 2016
A single quarter of iPad Pro sales will exceed the total of all Microsoft Surface tablets ever sold – November 24, 2015
Microsoft pays $400 million for product placement, then NFL announcer calls Surface tablet ‘iPad-like’ on air – September 8, 2014
Buffalo Bills coach Doug Marrone says his Microsoft Surface tablet ‘didn’t work’ for portion of game – August 4, 2014
How Apple’s iPad is revolutionizing NFL playbooks for players and coaches – July 19, 2012
Miami Dolphins latest to replace huge paper playbooks with Apple iPads – June 24, 2012
Cincinnati Bengals go digital with iPad playbooks, join dozen other NFL teams – June 15, 2012
Denver Broncos NFL team transfers traditional playbooks to Apple iPads – April 23, 2012
NFL’s Tampa Bay Bucs give every player an Apple iPad 2 to hold playbook, video – August 25, 2011
NFL teams considering replacing playbooks with Apple iPads – February 4, 2011


  1. Does anybody know if NHL players wear radio transponders in their clothing?

    Here in the UK, I work on a lot of Premiership Rugby matches and every player wears a tiny RF device which allows their precise position to be tracked at all times. The stats computer automatically delivers real time summaries of how each team is performing. Coaches can drill down into the stats during play to determine the work rate of any particular player and use that information to use substitutes when a player is no longer performing effectively.

    When this system was introduced, I was a bit sceptical about how it might work and how the players might react to it, but it seems to be extremely reliable and there doesn’t seem to be any resistance to it.

    I was wondering how many other sports now use similar technology?

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