5 min read

Issue 13: DFB gets active, MMA NFTs, soccer all over

Issue 13: DFB gets active, MMA NFTs, soccer all over

Here's your weekly review on what happened at the intersection of NFTs and Sports:

  • 🥊 The Professional Fighting League drops MMA moments
  • ⚽ The German Football Association launches NFTs with Fanzone
  • ⚽ More soccer: Zilstars, Atlético, Buffon, Carlos

👋 Plus: Our Nifty Sports Discord server is live! Join us to discuss the latest news and insights about NFTs in sports.

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🥊 The Professional Fighting League drops MMA moments

The Professional Fighters League (PFL), an American mixed martial arts league, and Fanaply, announced the first official NFTs of an MMA organization. And it seems like they are going the 'Top Shot way' with a moment-driven concept. There will be so-called “debut moments” representing the first time a PFL fighter competed for the PFL, and so-called “championship moments” presenting the winner of each weight class in the 2021 season. All of them will only be offered in limited editions of three, definitely a differentiator to NBA Top Shot where some moments come in editions of 40,000. Another differentiator: Each NFT will be 30 seconds long and includes signed gloves with a personalized inscription of the buyer's choosing. Pretty cool.

The collection is now available for auction at Fanaply over a 7-day period starting June 10.

Source: PFLMMA.com

⚽ The German Football Association launches NFTs with Fanzone

Right on time for the UEFA Euro 2020 - yes, 2020 is correct as the tournament was postponed by a year - the German Football Association (DFB) partnered with Fanzone to launch signature card collections of Germany’s Men’s, Women’s and Under 21 National Teams. All cards can be collected and traded but also used in a Fantasy Sports manager game to earn rare cards and rewards (coming soon). The first cards have launched on the Fanzone marketplace and it seems like Germany is the only team that has an NFT play in place for the Euro 2020. Let's see how this bold move will work out! Btw: Payments can be made both in crypto and fiat currencies. The platform is currently in beta version, so not all functionalities are rolled out yet.

A few more words about Fanzone: Football is just the starting point for the Berlin-based company, as they plan to expand into other "zones" soon. Two other interesting facts: The project is based on the very promising LUKSO blockchain and the activity on Fanzone's platform will support sustainable sports and environmental projects. Further details were not given yet.

Source: DFB, Fanzone

⚽ More soccer: Zilstars, Atlético, Buffon, Carlos

And that's not it yet about the "beautiful game". While the week was a calm one overall we saw a range of new football related NFT projects pop up. Just like DFB's launch this might be connected to the upcoming Euro 2020 tournament, but also the Copa America - the South American equivalent - which is kicking off within the next days. A great time for football fans! Here are the projects we found this week:

The Zilliga platform has launched the 'Zilstars' marketplace for digital collectibles, kicking it off with 10 well-known players: James Rodríguez, Radamel Falcao, Keylor Navas, Diego Costa, Raúl Jiménez, Joao Félix, Pepe, Diogo Jota, Renato Sanches and Rúben Dias. Why those players? Well, all belong to the athlete management firm, Polaris Sports, led by the famous agent Jorge Mendes. Seems like he's trying to monetize his "assets" on all playing grounds... A few facts about the NFTs:

  • Each player has a limited edition of 333 NFTs, divided into 111 packages (gold, steel and copper). Additionally, 999 digital items will be available as a 'Superpack', consisting of NFTs from all 10 footballers
  • Purchases can be made using the $ ZIL cryptocurrency, at a price of $ 3,500 for the entry pack and $ 20,000 for the 'Superpack'
  • Buyers will be able to access rewards such as jerseys and cleats signed by the stars, or even meet them virtually

Let's put it this way: Definitely nothing for the mass market... ;)

Atlético Mineiro will be part of the "100 Creators" campaign by Binance. Background: Binance, one of the world's biggest cryptocurrency exchanges will launch its NFT platform in late June and therefore works with 100 creators to offer NFTs on the new market. The Brazilian soccer club's collection will consist of a series of historic shirts.

Plínio Signorini, CEO of Atlético Mineiro says:

"We started the NFT movement in Latin America. Now, we are taking another important step by joining forces with Binance, a major global player in cryptocurrencies and crypto activities in general."

Our take: Definitely a great achievement for a club to be amongst all those select and creative artists. We're curious to see the design of the shirts!

And then there is SportsIcon, an initiative that helps professional athletes to publish their NFTs. The first one is live with Roberto Carlos, famous Brazilian soccer player. And the next one is already announced with Italian goalkeeping legend Gianluigi Buffon. Roberto Carlos' collection is themed around his career and most famous goals. When you have a look at the collection two things stand out:

  • SportsIcon uses the white label solution of OpenSea, so it's not a stand-alone marketplace
  • Sales have not gone so well for the collection yet, the vast majority of the items are still available and the sold ones have only secured 2.3 Eth so far, which is around €4,600.

The auction for the premium items that come with meet & greets and signed memorabilia still runs 6 days, let's see if they can pick up some steam.

Source: SportsIcon

🤓 Wrapping it up

So what have we learned in this week's issue?

  • The German Football Association is the first one to launch a full NFT collection. Choosing Fanzone and not going with an established player like Sorare is a bold move but if executed well can bring a lot of advantages and of course a sort of independence
  • The Professional Fighters League brings MMA moments to the market. Given the facts that the sport is so popular and that there's spectacular footage for the highlight clips this could become a good endeavour. It's public knowledge that the UFC is working on something with Dapper Labs as well, but it seems like the PFL is faster
  • And then there's athlete-driven NFTs... This seems to be a never ending supply where big names are used in combination with some memorabilia to "engage the fan". This is definitely a tricky topic and all comes down to the fan and if he/she sees a value in those packs. At least for the mid/long-term value we are on the sceptical side...

That's it for this weeks issue! And as always: Feel free to reach out for feedback and to discuss all things NFT and sports! And to stay up to date: Make sure to follow us on Instagram and Twitter for stats, drop announcements and more. And join us on our Discord server to discuss the latest news and insights about NFTs in sports.