Here's your weekly review on what happened at the intersection of NFTs and Sports:
- 🇺🇸 NFTs for Super Bowl attendees, the Cavs and the All-Star Game
- ❄️ Alibaba's non-tradeable NFTs for the Winter Olympics
- 📊 Monthly stats: Top Shot, Sorare, Topps MLB
Let's have a closer look! 👀
🇺🇸 NFTs for Super Bowl attendees, the Cavs and the All-Star Game
The NFL offers limited edition NFTs to celebrate Super Bowl LVI. "Each fan who attends Super Bowl LVI will receive a complimentary, customised NFT featuring their unique section, row, and seat to commemorate gameday, providing a digital keepsake from their Super Bowl experience." The league will also celebrate the return of the Super Bowl to LA as well as the previous Super Bowls hosted in LA with a release a series of seven historic commemorative NFTs for purchase. And last but not least: the NFL will release club specific NFTs for the Super Bowl LVI participating teams, the Los Angeles Rams and the Cincinnati Bengals, and later this month will release a final NFT of the Super Bowl LVI winning team.
The Cleveland Cavaliers have launched the “My Cavs Locker” NFT Experience in partnership with NFT platform Sweet. Fans can claim their locker for free which will "act as the fan's virtual showcase for displaying and interacting with any and all future Cavs NFT collectibles". A virtual shirt available at the game against the Pacers on Feb 6 tipped off a "series of collectibles that will be made available to fans who attend home games throughout the remainder of the 2021-22 season. Future collectibles may also include a varsity jacket, sneakers, Cavs branded t-shirts that just might also make an appearance in the physical world."
The NBA unveiled the 2022 All-Star court as part of the first-ever citywide, shopable NBA All-Star NFT art gallery in Cleveland. "The NFTs showcase the history of NBA All-Star games in Ohio through the courts the games have been played on, represented as limited-edition digital collectibles. Each court will be displayed as part of NBA All-Star artwork covering one of 10 Cleveland locations (...) The NFTs will also include a mini physical replica of the court. As part of the program, $100,000 of the proceeds from the sale of the NFTs will go to the Funders Collaborative on COVID Recovery." In order to buy the NFTs fans can visit any of 10 locations throughout the city to find and scan a QR code to sign up and register for more information.
❄️ Alibaba's non-tradeable NFTs for the Winter Olympics
Alibaba has launched four NFTs featuring sports at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, expanding the offerings available in China’s closed, non-tradeable NFT world. "The four badges, each having 8,888 copies, will be issued on four different dates, but are only available to Alibaba’s 88Vip paid members, who can purchase using shopping credits and 0.01 yuan (0.16 US cents)." Alibaba’s Winter Olympics digital collectibles are only available to mainland Chinese residents over the age of 14 years, and owners are “barred from using the digital collectibles for any commercial purpose”.
📊 Monthly stats: Top Shot, Sorare, Topps MLB
At the beginning of each month we look at the most important stats of the big leagues' NFT marketplaces. Note: We're planning to include the newly launched UFC Strike and NFL All Day as well, once accurate data becomes available.
- Sorare continues the steady growth that we have seen over the last year, with great increases in transaction numbers (over 60%) and unique buyers (over 25%)
- Topps MLB more than doubled their revenue and transactions compared to the previous month, potentially a result of Topps' being acquired by Fanatics, giving collectors and investors more confidence for the future
- Also Top Shot had a really good month, with over 50% increase in revenue and close to 30% increase of unique buyers
🤓 Wrapping it up
So what have we learned in this week's issue?
- Big events scream NFTs. Only in this issue we've covered the Super Bowl, the NBA All-Star Game and the Winter Olympics. Their respective approaches are different though: The NFL goes for a mix of free NFTs for event attendees and shop-able NFTs for the broader masses, the All-Star game includes a Cleveland-based scavenger hunt like activity and the Winter Olympics offer a limited but low price drop for VIP customers of Alibaba, with items that can not be sold on the secondary market. It is save to assume that the vast majority of big events will include some sort of NFT component in their offering, which essentially adds a new revenue stream to their IP. However, it is important to adjust the NFTs to the respective audience and the location of the event, something the above mentioned initiatives have tried to do already.
- The Cavs have launched a smart initiative, as they understand that fans want to "flex" their NFT collection to fellow fans and the broader NFT community. Building the so-called locker room seems to be a clever way to own the place where Cavs fans can do so. One important aspect will be if they also allow items from other marketplaces or blockchains, as it's likely that fans will shop their NFTs at multiple spots (for example NBA Top Shot) and not just the official Cavs NFT store.
- The NFT marketplaces successfully kick off 2022. While the last year has been one of ups and downs, the "big 3" of NBA, MLB and Sorare all show promising numbers in January. Maybe 2022 is the year of NFT mass adoption after all? Can't wait to add the UFC and NFL marketplaces as well.
And 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! To stay up to date: Make sure to follow us on Instagram and Twitter for stats, drop announcements and more.