We’ve seen mixed reality at sporting events before, but it never ceases to thrill and amaze. The latest team to work with this technology is the Carolina Panthers, who debuted a mixed-reality panther at their season opener on Sunday.
The team treated fans to this unique experience at home against the New York Jets on Sunday, and it was wild. Check it out below:
The Panther, with glowing green eyes, climbed up on top of the Bank of America sign and ripped down a virtual Jets flag in its big entrance. The Panther then jumped onto the field, still holding the flag, before ripping it up with its teeth and claws.
It jumped through the uprights and back onto the top of the stadium, before making its virtual exit. This mascot is a little more realistic than the team’s mascot, though no disrespect to Sir Purr.
Whether it was this intimidation factor, home field advantage or just generally being more put together and ready as a team, it worked and the Panthers defeated the Jets 19-14. Carolina’s quarterback Sam Darnold got revenge on his old team with the victory.
The Baltimore Ravens have also tried this before, but using, of course, a mixed reality raven instead of a panther. In sheer coincidence, the Ravens were playing the Jets as well when they debuted their mixed reality feature.