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Talking Data podcast: Professional athletics adopts sports analytics

Professional teams are moving quickly to adopt sports analytics. But not everyone is sold on the benefits of data analysis.

The world of sports is moving rapidly to adopt advanced analytics. Today teams look at a range of metrics that they feel give them an edge over their competition. But what kinds of insights are teams really deriving from this kind of sports analytics? This was the question the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference sought to answer. As you might expect, speakers had very different opinions on the value of sports analytics. For some teams, measuring things like total miles run by each player or the percentage of rebound opportunities converted makes sense. However, others see these metrics as a distraction from the things that really count in sports -- teamwork, leadership, attitude -- which ultimately are very human and therefore difficult to quantify. 

In this edition of Talking Data, TechTarget editors Ed Burns and Jack Vaughan recap the conference and take a look at trends in the adoption of analytics by sports teams. The podcast also examines what businesses may be able to learn from the adoption of analytics in sports.

Ed Burns is site editor of SearchBusinessAnalytics. Email him at and follow him on Twitter: @EdBurnsTT.

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