Dapper Labs, the non-fungible token factory behind CryptoKitties and NFL Top Shot, will launch a line of pro football collectibles.
Professional football has seen the NBA score big with its Top Shot NFT
offerings, and wants a piece of the action.
The National Football League, National Football League Players Association and NBA Top Shot
developer Dapper Labs
plan to announce a deal this week to create a line of video clip-based non-fungible token collectibles, Sports Business Journal reported
on September 28.
Terms of the deal were not released but an anonymous source said they would be very rich indeed, claiming it "makes Dapper Labs the [NFLPA] union's second largest source of digital licensing revenue behind 'Madden' maker EA Sports," according to SBJ.
In May 2020, the league and union signed a six-year, $1.6 billion deal with EA that Sports Pro Media said
would bring the players $600 million — $100 million a year.
While that doesn't necessarily mean the Dapper Labs deal will be worth anything like that sum, it's worth noting that CryptoSlam!
puts NBA Top Shot's total sales at nearly $722 million since its October 2020 launch. While that includes buyer resales, it accounts for 9.8 million transactions by more than 564,000 fans and collectors.
However, Top Shot caught the crest
of this spring's NFT craze and has since seen sales subside dramatically. Of course, the season also ended in July, which would naturally diminish sales.
SBJ reported that Dapper Labs and its NFL and NFLPA partners plan to have a site up and running "before the end of the NFL season" on January 9, 2022.
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Dapper Labs cut its teeth as the creator of the CryptoKitties
, the first breakout NFT game and collectible line. It was so popular when it launched in late 2017 that transactions clogged the Ethereum blockchain.
NFTs are unique and carry their own proof of provenance on the blockchain, making them an ideal platform for collectibles
Dapper Labs was valued at $7.6 billion following a $250 million funding round on September 22. That tripled its value less than six months after a $305 million
late March round.
Both the league and union will take equity in Dapper Labs.
While the report didn't mention it, the NFL's NFT marketplace will almost certainly run on Dapper Labs' new Flow blockchain.
Despite its steep drop in sales, the NBA Top Shot line of digital trading cards remains the No. 4 top-selling line of NFTs after Axie Infinity, CryptoPunks and Art Blocks.