Utah Jazz fan sees game for first time

Landon Carter, a 7-year-old Utah Jazz fan, has never really been able to watch his favorite team play basketball. Born with no irises due to a condition called aniridia, Carter is legally blind. His eyesight is always blurry, and he needs to be inches away from whatever he’s viewing to see it clearly.

That changed Friday when the Jazz allowed Carter to test some new technology called eSight– a pair of special glasses with a built-in HD camera that captures what the wearer is looking at, and projects the video on LED screens in front of the user’s eyes.

According to a KUTV report, the team invited Carter and his father, Jeff Carter, to Game 3 in the Jazz-Clippers series at Vivint Smart Home Arena for a test run. Eventually, the Jazz hope the new technology will allow all vision-impaired fans to get the full NBA experience.

Based on Carter’s test run, it sounds like the glasses are a hit. From KUTV:

At the Jazz-Clippers playoff game, Landon was invited to watch the players practice before the game. He was outfitted with a pair of glasses, and it was clear what he was seeing was completely new to him.

“Yeah I can see that!” he announced excitedly to his father. He was able to read signs 100 yards away, and, for the first time, to see the ball go into the basket.

The Clippers made a late comeback to steal Game 3 from the Jazz, but even that couldn’t sour an unforgettable experience:

For Landon’s dad, he said it doesn’t matter to him who wins the game, what matters is his son gets to see it happen.

“It’s something, I’m getting choked up now,” Jeff said. ” He hasn’t had that experience.”

According to the KUTV report, just Utah — one of the country’s smallest states — has over 50,000 visually impaired residents. Once the Jazz get the eSight goggles fully in place for their fans, that’s already a ton of people that will be able to experience sports in a new way.


About Jesse Kramer

Jesse is a writer and editor for The Comeback. He has also worked for SI.com and runs The Catch and Shoot, a college basketball website based in Chicago. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Follow Jesse on Twitter @Jesse_Kramer.