There may not be in-person attendance at the NBA bubble games, but the league is allowing a select-few people to appear in the virtual stands. Each game still has a home team and those franchises will be allowed to select fans to attend via the Microsoft Teams app.
Each NBA game in Orlando features massive video boards where the virtual fans of the home team will appear. When a fan chooses to get up (leave their camera), a new person from the virtual waiting room will be invited in by the moderator
The NBA has also created “virtual cheering” and you can click this link to see what games are currently available. This a different feature and does not involve being on camera.
How Much Does Is Cost to be a Virtual Fan at NBA Bubble Games?
It does not cost anything to be a virtual NBA fan, but you will need to sign up for a free Microsoft Teams account. The NBA is also advising fans to download the Microsoft Teams desktop application.
Once you have signed up for a Microsoft Teams account and have downloaded the desktop app, follow the following steps to become a virtual fan, per NBA guidelines. You can also click here to view the NBA’s detailed handout of all of the steps listed below along with illustrations.
Step 1: Find the Meeting Invitation on the Calendar Icon
Once you are logged into Teams, click the calendar icon on the left side of the page. Click the current date and find the NBA game that you wish to virtually attend. Please note that the NBA games will likely begin to appear an hour before tipoff. Once the game is available, click the join button.
Step 2: Optimize Your Microsoft Team Settings
The NBA is asking fans to optimize your settings before joining the meeting. You can turn your mic on and off and custom backgrounds should not be enabled. Your face should be centered in the middle of your camera.
Step 3: Join the Meeting
Once your settings are optimized, click the purple “Join now” button, and you will wait in the virtual lobby until the moderator allows you to enter the game. You will need to stay in the lobby to have a chance at getting invited into the NBA virtual bubble games.
Step 4: Optimize the Viewing Experience
Click the Participant List icon on the top bar then look for the participant labeled “Game Feed” and right click it then select pin. This will allow you to view a live feed of the game. Right click on the game feed and select “Fit to Frame.” Click on the three dots at the top bar then click on the “Together Mode” in the drop-down menu.
This should give you a view of your virtual fan section and allow you to make the big screen during the NBA game. Fans can be kicked out by the moderator for obscene behavior, but the NBA indicated they hope not to have to give the boot to anyone.
“We’re not looking to stop any particular fan’s language from coming through,” Sara Zuckert, the NBA’s head of next gen telecast, told Wall Street Journal. “We’re really just focused on truly offensive and obscene behavior.”
For further questions, please check-out the NBA’s detailed step-by-step instructions with accompanying graphics. You can also check your favorite team’s website to see their specific guidelines for becoming a virtual fan.