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How has NFT changed the sports industry?

The application of NFT to the world of sports has significantly accelerated the growth of the NFT sector over the past two years.

Overview

Dapper Labs’ NBA Top Shots collection demonstrates how vital the current market is for blockchain-based sports collections. However, the potential of sports NFT goes far beyond that.

Dapper Labs' NBA Top Shots collection.
Dapper Labs’ NBA Top Shots collection.

Today, we are seeing rapid adoption of NFT in the sports ecosystem. With successful trials on sports collections, match tickets and virtual sports. Digital assets will be the next source of customer acquisition. It is also the driving force behind most of the revenue of many clubs.

In this article, we look at some interesting prospects for the growth of sports NFTs, from tokens to dynamic NFTs and digital wearables.

The evolution of NFT in the world of sports

Launched in October 2020, NBA Top Shots has become one of the most successful stories demonstrating the NFT boom. Four months from launch, the market has seen over $45 million in daily transactions. Although sales have dropped significantly since reaching ATH, the number remains stable for now. Dapper Labs has always secured contracts to produce official NFT collectibles for the NFL, UFC and many other famous athletes.

The evolution of NFT in the world of sports.
The evolution of NFT in the world of sports.

Despite the success that has been achieved, digital versions of traditional sport are only the first step in the journey of clubs looking to incorporate NFT into their existing revenue.

Some interesting NFT use cases that are currently on the market. Included: Exclusive access to live behind-the-scenes chats, convert digital match tickets into memorabilia, or use NFT as key to access a live match in the metaverse with special seats …

The image below gives us a view from the fan’s position towards the Manchester City football club stadium through the metaverse.

By the time the metaverse began to take shape, there was a clear crossover with the emerging digital wearables market. For die-hard fans, it’s entirely possible to create avatars in a digital version of your favorite team.

Benefits of NFT for fans

Let’s say you bought an NFT piece with a Michael Jordan boot. What will you gain from this purchase? You don’t actually get the copyright for it, nor can you use it outside of the blockchain. Furthermore, tokens cannot be lent or split. Buyers can only do what is authorized by the owner, in this case the NBA and Dapper Labs.

You wonder why such platforms are still popular and attract more and more fans? The answer is that you can purchase and preserve moments from the collection knowing that you are the only one with the official versions of those highlights.

In general, fans can easily download the files they like, often for free. But the exclusivity of the new files is the key value. Blockchain records and securely stores information about who you are who purchased a certain item. Also store data about the person who created the item. For fans and collectors, such purchases are like buying a writer’s original manuscript or painting.

Fans can also treat NFTs as a form of investment: They can resell tokens and make money from them. For some people, having a unique NFT from their favorite club is an unforgettable emotional experience.

Benefits of NFT for Athletes

NFT offers a new monetization model that benefits athletes and their fans more than advertising or sponsorship. It is also a new way to connect with fans and provide fans with a unique experience. For example, give them the opportunity to buy one-of-a-kind items and photos from their personal archive. Even tickets to a face-to-face meeting after the game.

Indeed, today we are witnessing a generation that values ​​digital assets as much as physical ones. So it’s not surprising that people are eager to buy digital photos or GIFs instead of downloading them for free. Especially when they know that they are proprietary.

Benefits of NFT for Athletes.
Benefits of NFT for Athletes.

All in all, the NFT is a win-win innovation, for both the athletes and their fans.

Dynamic NFT and the future of fan engagement

Although many of these are likely to simply extend the existing functionality of the NFT to the world of sports. But there are also technical developments in the NFT space that will enable a host of exciting new use cases to emerge.

The development of Dynamic NFT (Dynamic NFT) is perhaps the most important of these capabilities. While conventional NFTs contain fixed data, dynamic NFTs can be continuously updated by interacting with off-chain data sources using Oracles.

This means creating fan-specific NFTs. Includes continuously updated performance stats and data changes as athletes reach career milestones. This allows fans to not only cheer from off the field, but also actively invest in the athletes. Because the value of the NFT they own will match the athlete’s competitive performance.

Dynamic NFT and the future of fan engagement
Dynamic NFT and the future of fan engagement

The potential to drive fan and athlete engagement through Dynamic NFT is growing dramatically. However, there are still more technical requirements to enable them.

A Decentralized Platform for Sports NFT

Dynamic NFTs and wearables powered in the metaverse have the potential to change the world of sports in the years to come. But at the same time they also require a capable blockchain infrastructure. The most popular blockchain for storing NFTs today, Ethereum, is experiencing problems stemming from the PoW consensus mechanism. These problems make NFT transactions expensive and potentially devalued NFTs.

Summary

The NFT market is growing extremely rapidly. Currently, we are seeing a real boom in NFT as more and more famous athletes, celebrities, artists and designers join this wave.

Today, the NFT offers ways for athletes to promote themselves and open up new ideas for interacting with fans. For sports fans, this is seen as an opportunity to acquire digital collectibles and unique physical items. Or even meet their favorite sports star.

Although NFT is a nascent industry, it promises to be even bigger in the future. Because it provides athletes and fans with advantages they never thought of before.