The entrance to Island Federal Arena, where home basketball games are played. The men’s basketball game against the Maine Black Bears played there on Saturday, Feb. 22, was the first game to be streamed in Mandarin. EMMA HARRIS/THE STATESMAN

The men’s basketball game against the Maine Black Bears on Saturday, Feb. 22, marked the start of a historic achievement for Stony Brook Athletics — the first game to be streamed in Mandarin.

“The role of intercollegiate athletics at Stony Brook is to extend the University brand on a regional, national and global level, and producing our games in Mandarin is one way to do that,” Shawn Heilbron, the Stony Brook Director of Athletics, said in a press release. “Stony Brook is such a diverse institution, so we’re constantly looking for ways to connect with a broader audience. Our belief is that basketball is an international game that serves as a common thread whether you speak English or Mandarin.”

Stony Brook University was recently listed by USA Today as the ninth-most diverse student body, as well as the 59th-best on Forbes’ list of America’s Best Employers for Diversity. Nearly 2,500 of Stony Brook’s students hail from China.

Ky Wang, a Master’s student pursuing a degree in sports management, will serve as the Mandarin commentator for the rest of the basketball season. Wang, a former professional swimmer and assistant basketball coach in Shanghai, is from China’s Zhejiang province.

“I’m excited,” Wang said in a press release. “The people will definitely love it. People in China like basketball. They cannot get enough of it.”

The stream in Mandarin is a result of a partnership between Stony Brook Athletics and Kiswe Mobile, a startup company for streaming technology that has been used in the past by the Washington Mystics of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA).


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