Here's your weekly review on what happened at the intersection of NFTs and Sports.
- 📊 Q1 is in the books, we compare NBA Top Shot and Sorare
- 🏈 Tom Brady announces his own NFT platform Autograph
- 🏍️ MotoGP has sold out their first series of collectibles
- ⛓️ More launches: Zion, Nurmagomedov, the Mannings, Garza, Zverev, Paul, Seaford, Fury
📊 NBA Top Shot & Sorare comparison
The first quarter of the year has come to an end, reason enough for us to have a closer look at the two most successful NFT platforms in sports. And by that we mean the dollars that went into them. Let's get straight to the facts.
And the numbers speak for themselves. NBA Top Shot is a much bigger platform than Sorare with over 18x the sales and over 29x the transactions. And a 23,200% growth compared to the previous quarter is just insane! The average sale price is higher on Sorare, probably connected to the much higher amount of "moments" available on Top Shot. Some of them have editions of 35,000+, while Sorare editions come with a maximum of 100 cards. In a recent podcast we heard that Sorare is thinking about launching another level of cards though, so that they become more accessible, as more cards are available and prices will very likely go down.
But let's also look at the month of March to get another view.
Top Shot is still in the lead when it comes to total numbers, but might have reached a (temporary) plateau, while Sorare continues to grow significantly. Top Shot's numbers are typically heavily influenced by the amount and types of pack releases (and also the tech issues they have been facing around this topic), while Sorare is constantly releasing new cards to the market and therefore seems less volatile.
Let's see how that "battle" is gonna continue! And we're especially curious about the performance of other leagues/platforms who will join in the near future.
🏈 Tom Brady announces Autograph
While the one GOAT is investing in Dapper Labs, the company behind NBA Top Shot (and soon more platforms), the other GOAT is kicking off his own NFT platform. In order to do this successfully the seven-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady works with an advisory team that includes executives from Apple, Lionsgate, Live Nation and DraftKings.
Dillon Rosenblatt, CEO and Co-Founder of Autograph:
"Autograph will bring together some of the world's most iconic names and brands with best in class digital artists to ideate, create and launch NFTs and ground-breaking experiences to a community of fans and collectors."
In our opinion this is one of the best moves in the Sports NFT world so far. Instead of shooting out a few, quick NFTs and (maybe) making some quick bucks Brady once again shows his strategic abilities by launching a platform that will continuously generate revenue if executed the right way. At least he shouldn't have an issue with onboarding a few celebrities to kick the platform off. Definitely a project to watch!
🏍️ MotoGP has sold our their first series
The MotoGP series has successfully launched their MotoGP Ignition platform. A bit of background information: Ignition is a competitive management and collectibles game built on the Flow blockchain, and is a title in the REVV Motorsport ecosystem. The sale of its Series 1 with a total of 9,500 packs, each containing three MotoGP™ Championship 2020 Season cards, was sold out quickly. Each pack is priced between $9 and $14.
That's the way to go if you are a rights-holder it seems! Align with a good tech partner that offers a gaming element and push you brand and your assets. For a fan this is great as well as you get more than just a "dumb" card and the excitement of the sport is connected to your NFTs. We like!
⛓️ More launches
It wasn't hard to predict that we'd see a wave of NFT launches, probably most of them still based on the success the collections of Gronk and Mahomes had seen (see our first issue), even though there were already a few examples where either the sales numbers were not so great or the launches came along with some unpleasant discussions (see issue 2 and issue 3). But that didn't stop more athletes and clubs from announcing their NFT projects. Maybe to make a quick buck, maybe just looking for some press, or just out of pure interest, we're not the ones to judge. Below is a quick summary of the main ones.
- Eli & Payton Manning, American Football legends, will release eight digital art pieces, called The Manning Legacy Collection, on April 16 on MakersPlace. The items are connected to the brothers' careers and designed by artists JK5 and Micah Johnson. Part of the proceeds will go to charitable organisations.
- Khabib Nurmagomedov, retired UFC fighter, launched an NFT collection with Gold (290 items, 2,900$), Platinum (29 items, $29,000) and Diamond (unique, will be auctioned with a starting price of $290,000) cards. All card buyers receive giveaways on top, the buyer of the Diamond edition will meet Khabib personally and receive multiple gifts from him. Pre-orders are open, the auction starts April 12.
Source: Digital Khabib
- Luka Garza, the March Madness star from University of Iowa, started to auction his unique NFT on OpenSea. And it comes with lots of perks: a lifetime pass to basketball camps hosted by Garza, autographed shoes from the game where he set the program record for most points in a career, a game of HORSE against him, as well as go to dinner and a meditation session with him. Pretty cool package! Part of the proceed will go to charitable organisations.
Source: Yahoo! Finance
- Mischa Zverev, professional tennis player, is offering five NFTs on OpenSea. Each of them are offered for 1 Ether and come with a workout with him. Currently none of them have been sold.
- Jake Paul, influencer and boxer, will release an NFT collection when "Jake defeats Ben Askren in the ring April 17th". The drop is called "The Future Of Boxing" and is centred around "Jake's love for the sport of Boxing with dynamic, elegant, and advanced visionary art pieces that depict Boxing in a beautiful manner". There will be five open edition NFTs and an auction for exclusive NFTs and ultra-exclusive experiences and prizes. Part of the proceeds will go to charitable organisations, the NFTs will be launched through Origin.
- Tyson Fury, heavyweight champion, is releasing a premium collection of NFTs including playing cards and memorabilia in collaboration with artist George Rollo and Fomo Labs. It combines culturally relevant themes along with popular culture. The first NFT will be launching within the next two weeks and the winner of the auction will be receiving the digital as well as the original piece of artwork, signed by Tyson Fury in an exclusive video that will also be included.
- Zion Williamson, upcoming NBA superstar, and SLAM have joined forces for a collection that includes two SLAM covers with Williamson. There are four editions - Basic (500), Gold (20), Gold Autographed (20), plus a unique Platinum Autographed - in addition to a digital basketball NFT. The auctions ended April 4th and the fact that nobody talks/writes about the outcome says much about the result... ;)
- Seaford Town FC, English football club playing at the Southern Combination Division One, released a series of limited-edition trading cards designed by brand agency UnitedUs and highlight video clips from memorable moments, available on OpenSea. They claim to be the first club that has self-published an NFT collection instead of partnering with a platform like Sorare.
Lots of Nifties to choose from... ;)
🤓 Publish smart, buy smart
So what are the learnings from this issue? Some thoughts:
If you publish NFTs: It is probably fair to say that by now an NFT launch is nothing special anymore (that happened quickly). Now it's time to find out what works and what doesn't and to come up cool, innovative concepts that really generate a value for the fan and/or the investor. Even better if you're Tom Brady and you're able to own an entire marketplace if things go well. Besides that cooperating with a good tech partner and involving a gaming element (utility token) seems to be the way to go.
If you buy NFTs: Only a few weeks ago it was almost a given that whatever NFT you purchased you would make a quick buck with it by flipping it a few days (sometimes hours) later. This seems to be a bit trickier by now, even when big names as Zion are involved. What still seems to work well is getting in early when platforms launch, e.g. MotoGP Ignition, with FOMO being a reliable friend. If you are into the gaming aspect of things you should be well off, as brands like Animoca have an ever growing offering for you.
Let's see what next week brings!