The Ins and Outs of NBA’s Newest and Hottest Trend: Top Shot
Let’s get right to it.
What is NBA Top Shot?
I, for one, recently learned a little bit about Top Shot from conversation with a buddy, but after doing some additional digging, I’d like to think I have developed a good grasp of what is actually going on in the world.
So here it is.
NBA Top Shot is an online company launched by Dapper Labs, a blockchain company from Vancouver on the west coast of Canada. Backed by the league, the company’s name has seemingly exploded overnight. NBA Top Shot allows its users to amass a collection of digital basketball highlights – essentially gifs – and show off their collections to others or sell them in the marketplace as the gifs grow in value.
I didn’t know what @nba_topshot was at first. But then I found myself having fun… and making friends! I spoke about trying out Top Shot & building my collection on @SportsNation @espn 🏀⛓ pic.twitter.com/gRsZfS9T62
— Ros Gold-Onwude (@ROSGO21) February 24, 2021
Yes, gifs are becoming monetized – absolutely wild.
Here are some other things you should probably know. There is a tier scale that varies based on the rarity of the gifs an owner may have in his collection. As per CBS Sports, this is how it works:
- Common, which are moments that can have over 1,000 digital copies: These moments can be purchased in Common Packs, starting at $9 for nine moments, for example.
- Rare (150-999 digital copies): These moments can be found in Rare Packs and above, starting at $22. The example Top Shot gives of this kind of pack contains seven common moments and one rare moment.
- Legendary (25-99 digital copies): These can be found in Legendary Packs, starting at $230. The example Top Shot gives contains six common moments, three rare moments and one legendary moment
- Platinum Ultimate (3 digital copies): These are only availably through auction.
- Genesis Ultimate (1 digital copy): There are also only available through auction.
Pretend this entire trend is like collecting Pokemon or baseball cards.
“Growing up I collected Pokémon cards and I’ll never forget the thrill of opening a pack, hoping for a holographic Charizard,” Alex Xu told CBS Sports. “When I heard of NBA Top Shot in January, I bought a pack and the nostalgia immediately hit. As an NBA fan, owning specific moments from my favorite players was a concept that was so cool. I’ve been collecting moments ever since.”
As fun as this can all be, there is also a very real possibility of a market due to the sudden boost in investment.
“Like any investment,” explained Brian Windhorst of ESPN. “Especially one that spikes like Top Shot has, there is the reality that it could collapse. Dapper Labs’ first major project was called CryptoKitties, a game launched in 2017 that involved virtual cats. Like Top Shot, it became very popular and values of the digital collectibles exploded — one digital cat selling for more than $170,000 — only for the items to plummet in value after the fad passed, bearing some resemblance to the Beanie Babies craze of the 1990s.”
Be mindful of your investments and have fun with it.