With the popularity of NFTs sweeping the globe, it is no wonder that powerhouses as high as the National Basketball Association (NBA) would want to be involved, too. Everyone wants a piece of the proverbial NFT Pie, and professional sports affiliations are no exception.
What is NBA Top Shot?
Depending on your age, you may remember back to a time when trading sports cards, like a baseball card, for instance, was a hot commodity among you and your 10-year-old buddies.
You would search for your favorite teams. You traded to get the best players. You saved up your allowance to get a new pack, which even came with a bonus stick of gum if you were lucky.
It was great fun, and over time, you could build up a vast collection.
One For the Collectors
Chances are if you are old enough to recall that, your mom long ago threw that collection from the attic to the trash can. But, good news: you have another chance to build an outstanding collection of sports trading cards now as an adult.
However, the “cards” being bought, sold, and traded these days aren’t really pressed cardboard you hold in your hand. Cards, much like you have, have aged, and things get better with age, right?
A Virtual Marketplace
Much like your 10-year-old self and your neighborhood cronies, creating a space to buy, sell, or trade your collections is step one. Your buddies may have gathered around the playground or dugout and swapped your favorites.
Today, those exchanges have gotten a bit more high-tech. NBA Top Shot is just such a marketplace. And it is a tad fancier than the old dugout.
NBA Top Shot creates a blockchain technology allowing registered users to jump in on the collectibles market. But, just like your marketplace took a step into the digital world, so too did the “cards” you are now viewing.
Not Your Father’s Baseball Cards
A “Top Shot” is like a baseball card of old, however, there are some major differences. Firstly, the sport is basketball. It should come as no shock that the trading market owned (at least partly) by the NBA and WNBA revolves around a bouncing orange ball flying into roundly-rimmed nets.
Secondly, the major difference is that these are no longer cards, but something called Top Shots. Top Shots are actually moments captured in a video clip. Yes, these are moving, action-based .gif files.
These tradable objects are made possible with the tech of the NFT.
An NFT Top Shot: The Technology
Top Shot moments are captured in a .gif file. But if you know anything about the Internet, these are not hard to come by at all. Your phone likely sends them in text form. You may post memes of that nature to social media. A .gif file in and of itself is certainly not hard to copy or reproduce. So, what makes a Top Shot moment any different?
A Non Fungible Token (NFT)
Owning these unique pieces of NBA history is made possible through blockchain technology and the creation of an NFT. If you haven’t heard by now, the NFT, which stands for non-fungible token, brings a certification, verification of ownership, and authenticity to digital assets.
A Representation for Anything
From artwork to pieces of real estate, NFTs can be the object of ownership that provides a certain legitimacy and security to owning an item. It does not have to be a tactile, real-world object, nor does it have to be digital. The use of tokens to represent, well, anything, has leveled that playing field, too.
Science Makes It Possible
When it comes to NBA Top Shot, the NFT is the proof of ownership you want. This is like an authenticity certificate, proving that what you own is what you say it is. It holds information like the one, true owner, the number of the moment in its series, and its data all in one space.
In addition, an NFT (as a non-fungible token, an irreplaceable and one-of-a-kind token) by its very nature means that it cannot be copied or taken over by another. The true owner is certified and locked away in a block on the chain. That block is immutable and no one has the power to change that.
A Decentralized Ledger
As you may know, the blockchain’s decentralized ledger sees to that aspect of technology. With no central authority, such as a bank or a government, the purpose of this peer-to-peer network is to verify transactions. The data is then stored within its blocks, unable to ever be changed by any person.
It may seem odd that a franchise as large as the NBA would be involved in a venture with no centralized authority, but such is the world of NFTs and cryptocurrency. Instead of the risks, NBA saw the chance of rewards, and thus far its jump into the online trading world has been nothing but net.
Digital assets have a high value and offer a safer experience thanks to similar technologies which were previously used to simply exchange crypto. Users are free to go about their business and don’t have to constantly worry about a site’s security.
NBA Top Shot Owners
Ownership of an NFT is far easier to prove and lock in than that of a major corporation. However, at the helm of the NBA Top Shot is, as no surprise, the NBA. However, they are not in it alone.
From The Tech That Brought You CryptoKitties
Dapper Labs is the name of the creator of the tech used on the NBA Top Shot platform. They worked in conjunction with the NBA to create the marketplace you see today. Think of Dapper Labs as the tech nerds running the computers, behind the athletes making the “moments.”
The developing company isn’t new to the scene. You may recognize the name as the lab that brought CryptoKitties to the NFT metaverse. With this background, it was a solid choice for the NBA to partner with and develop a strong marketplace.
Splitting the Sales
Its sales, which are topping charts on the regular, are split among Dapper Labs, the NBA, and the NBPA, the National Basketball Players Association.
Many users are also encouraged by the Moment sales because the NBA Top Shot highlights are all completely licensed by the NBA itself. When coupled with an NFT, a professional sport licensing is another pretty high standard for certifying a digital asset. Having the backing of the league may have taken Dapper some work, but it surely paid off in the long run and resulted in another “slam dunk” for the company.
Don’t Fall for an Imitation
While many secondary marketplaces have sprung up since the inception of NBA Top Shot, there is only one true platform with the backing of the pros. Some sites were created to analyze site traffic, attempting to help buyers make
How Much Is an NBA Top Shot Moment
There are a lot of factors that go into what an actual Top Shot moment is worth. Just like your old-school baseball cards, the more rare the card was, the more unique the display, the more that card was valued at amongst your friends (or dealers if you were real fancy). But something must be going well for a platform that brought $700 million in just over a year.
With users like Kevin Durant and Michael Jordan, it is no wonder the popularity is booming. To date, at the time of publication, the highest valued Top Shot moment was of LeBron James dunking a ball over the Houston Rockets. It garnered an impressive $387,000, the site’s “Most Valuable Moment.”
Shot Moments’ Look
Each moment is a unique moment in time, but as we all know, that clip of action can be replicated in many ways. When the NBA Top Shot creates a moment, however, you may notice even in your first views, these aren’t your basic, boring .gif files.
An NBA Top Shot Moment is a piece with flair. From fancy graphics and designs to an almost holographic, 3-D look, there is a wide variety to the style and layout of each moment. To say these are a spiced-up version of an evening news clip is an understatement.
More Access, More Success
Dapper Labs is able to take even old highlight reels and clip those moments, minting unique NFTs for sale on its marketplace. By working directly with the NBA, the red tape and hassle of legally obtaining such clips are greatly reduced, saving both sides time and money in the process.
With free reign to search years of videos, Dapper has created a unique story around its business model. By marketing such a unique product, that of owning a moment in time from the NBA itself, it has created many new fans. And, in this business, new fans mean new money.
Shot Moments’ Value
While some very rare Moments have gone for mid-six figures, it is not the typical experience of an Average Joe user. Just like any collectible, sports world or not, the value of each individual NFT varies greatly.
Pieces, which are digitally stored in your online wallet, can range from under $10 to hundreds of thousands. Much of a Moments’ value comes from its rarity. Top Shots ranks its Moments with four current categories:
- Common: Widely available, lower in value, largest edition sizes
- Fandom: Variable edition sizes, designed to hold your favorites
- Rare: Small edition size, increased specialty, highly coveted
- Legendary: elite level, extremely rare, sought worldwide
Each Moment has a category based on how rare it is (i.e. how few are minted). The more unique the Moment, the rarer it is, the fewer are made overall, and the more value it has.
How Do You Get a Top Shot Moments Account
It doesn’t take an advanced degree to get an account with NBA Top Shot. The steps are rather simple, especially if you already have a digital wallet to log into, or some familiarity with NFTs.
Firstly, simply go the platform’s website at https://nbatopshot.com/. From there, you will see a bright blue button at the top, right corner of the page, among its menu choices, reading “Sign Up.”
Clicking the Sign-Up button will open a pop-up screen to walk you through the necessary steps. Click on “Let’s Go” under the cartoon, and you are on your way.
NBA Top Shot allows you to sign up using your Google account to log in, or if you’d like to save a few data entry steps. Otherwise, you can use the use email and password you create to log in.
Don’t Forget the Dapper Labs
You’ll notice, upon agreeing to sign up, you are technically making an account with Dapper Labs. Don’t be alarmed. It is the company that is the lab behind the blockchain’s tech.
Dapper Labs is the home of the technology, so information is more secure and verified while being housed on its blockchain, offering a safer experience.
How To Buy an NBA Top Shot
Once you have established your very own account and connected your digital wallet, you can hit the marketplace. This is another simple menu button at the top of the NBA Top Shot menu bar, along the top of the homepage.
The Online Marketplace
Once you click on Marketplace, you will see unique ways in which to search for what you are looking for specifically. For example, you can narrow your Moments search by NBA Team. Perhaps you only want to see NFTs for the Philadelphia 76ers. With the click of the teams’ button, you can narrow your search and filter out what you don’t want.
Other categories you can shop within include New Moments, which brings the newest of NFTs to the forefront. Most Valuable Listings are also separated if the worth is all you seek.
Picking Your NFT
Once you have narrowed the field, you will see individual NFTs and what the current value (lowest ask) is at the box’s lower left. At the lower right, the site will show you what the same NFT has gone for on average across the last 14 days.
NBA Top Shot Packs
Those on the market to purchase packs (or unopened, read blind, collections of NFTs) are in for quite the search. The site has sporadic, unannounced releases of packs that are awarded on a first-come, first-serve purchase basis.
You Better Act Fast
What this has translated to among collectors is a mad frenzy of button-smashing you haven’t seen the likes of since Mortal Combat was in an arcade. Those lucky enough to catch the release will scramble to enter the race fast enough to be able to buy a pack.
This has made packs a very sought-after and hot commodity. As you can imagine, this also drives up their value and price.
A Range of Pack Prices
As with individual Moments, the pack prices sold on NBA Top Shot vary greatly. From a $9 starter pack, which gives you three NBA Moments to begin your collection, to a $999 Holo Icon (holographic) collectors edition, there are many choices depending on the size of your wallet.
For example, in the next sale on the site, the $999 Holo Icon pack is set to include 9 Momen NFTs, including 1 Holo Icon Legendary Moment, which is being limited to just 99 in the world, and 1 Metallic Gold LE Rare Moment, which is limited to just 749 in the world.
The Rarer the Moment, The Higher the Value
As you can see, like most NFTs or collectibles in the non-digital world, the rarer a piece is, the higher its price tag. It is a basic lesson of supply and demand. With fewer in existence, each one that is has a value all the higher because of it.
The Required Cryptocurrency
Currently, there are limited types of crypto that are accepted on the NBA Top Shot platform. At the time of publication, the site currently is willing to accept:
- Ether (ETH)
- Bitcoin (BTC)
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
In order to make purchases and interact on the platform, you will need to own (or convert what you do own) into one of these crypto brands. NBA Top Shot does not accept any other crypto forms.
How To Invest in Top Shot
There are different ways to make crypto while buying, selling, or trading on the NBA Top Shot platform. Fans of the game may have an interest in building a collection for the fun of it, and less for the future value. However, most users are surfing the web for new NFTs in order to invest.
There are a few ways that new users or long-term vets can make some funds by taking your own shot using NBA Top Shot.
Though harder to come by at times, the pack of Moments is one of the best ways to turn a quick buck. For new fans or those without a lot of time for research and digging, a pack is an easy way to hit a three-pointer.
Buy Low, Sell High
Packs offer a selection of randomly selected Moments. For example, the starter pack is offered at just $9. This gives you your first three NFTs.
Each individual NFT is likely worth more than $3, meaning you stand to make a profit right off the bat. By purchasing groups of NFTs together, you stand to make more selling them individually later.
In addition, due to the random nature of the pack selection process, these blind buys are one way you can get lucky without much investment of time. Think of packs somewhat like a scratch-off lottery ticket. Sure, it could be a loser. It could only get you $1 or a free ticket, but there is a chance, albeit small, that you manage to pull in a real win.
Many users are willing to take that risk, especially when packs are affordable. You don’t have to own a subscription to Sports Illustrated, manage a professional team, nor spend weeks doing research. When there are blind packs, any layup can turn into a slam dunk without the effort.
New fans may find packs to be a safer experience because minimally you are gaining quantity, if not some quality.
Accept the Challenge
On the NBA Top Shot platform, there are unique, game-like events called Challenges. In a Challenge, you are on a quest of sorts. A Challenge, which can be found again on the top menu bar along with the site’s main homepage, can really be made up of any set goals.
The site lists challenges and offers up a bar that you must reach. For instance, it could be to collect the best 12 Moments you can, or it could be to display 10 of your best Moments from the same team. Whatever the goal is, players have a chance to make it happen. Players don’t know what future Challenges will be so preparation is fair for all collectors.
Watch the Clock
Just like an ever-ticking shot clock, however, users only have a set amount of time to complete the quest. Clocks are displayed along with a description of each Challenge.
Only a handful of challenges are going on at any one given moment. They are subject to change and have differing timeframes, depending on the complexity of the challenge. The number of those competing will also be shown.
A Chance for a Big Win
These types of competitions, in which winners are awarded exclusive releases, is one of the best ways for someone to grab a very rare Moment. These cards can be worth quite a bit, especially if the only way to grab one is to win.
Try your hand at these games, and you could be proud of the owner of some very rare NFTs without much effort. Keep in mind, though, that Challenges can be a pricy venture. Some collections you are asked to pick up might cost a pretty penny, but if you can win, the payout will be worth the risk. In the future, those extra Moments you obtained are worth selling anyhow.
Buy, Sell, or Trade
Just like the days of old with cardboard professional athlete trading cards, one way to make money with NBA Top Shot is to simply buy, sell, trade, or collect Moments. Even purchased individually, these NFTs, just like those used for digital artwork, for example, can go up in value simply by existing.
Investing in the Most Valuable Moments or cards with very rare availability will be a risk, but like any cryptocurrency exchange, there always is. The bigger the risk you put out, the bigger the potential reward (and the bigger the potential loss).
Just like digital artwork, or for that matter traditional art, the value of collectibles like a Moment may go up just as the market continues to grow and change. A Moment you bought a year ago for $3, might this year be valued at $6.
One by one, you can add to your collection, picking up NFTs through a trade, sale, or even for free, which may increase in value depending on the future of the marketplace. Just like crypto, the value of an NFT can be low one week, and high the next week.
It is a risk like any market, but operating on open spaces such as NBA Top Shot means you have the chance at peer-to-peer interaction. No one knows the future, but banking on a commodity to inflate over time is a much-used practice across many investment types.
Don’t Forget the Discord
Since NBA Top Shot Moments revolve around a game, it is no surprise a big part of the fanbase is also made up of gamers. Top Shot has hitched its wagon to the use of additional applications, such as Discord, to help bring in a bigger number of users.
This app, often used for gamers across many systems to talk, chat, or hear one another, offers investors a unique opportunity. Unlike traditional research which can typically only be done using historic analytics or similar technologies, reading through countless articles or a true effort to manage the trends online, Discord brings a unique stream of information.
Though moderated by Top Shot, these Discord channels offer a chance for users not only to connect for the purpose of buying and selling (or even a basic trade) but also give fans a chance to speak to one another, directly. Much like a blockchain operating P2P network brings buyers and sellers together directly, Discord does too.
Access to this level of communication and similar technologies gives buyers and sellers on this platform an advantage. How often can you speak to a seller directly about his wares? By getting into this communication application, users can get a heads up on trends, research by talking to peers, and of course make connections for marketplace business.
Know Your Value
Before you get invested in the platform, it is wise to know what your NBA Top Shot Moments may be worth. Thankfully, FLOLiO has the tools for you. To find out your collection’s valuation, check out the resources available at FLOLiO.com.