What is NBA Top Shot? A Guide to Slam Dunk NFTs!

21 Min Read
Important Tips:

1. NBA Top Shot Marketplace is developed by Dapper Labs and licensed by National Basketball Association
2. The platform recorded secondary market trades worth $1.03 billion in 2020 but later reduced to $207 million in 2022 due to the bear market.
3. LEBRON JAMES Legendary #23 LE from the “2020 NBA Finals” set Series 1 is the most expensive NFT, sold for $230,023.

NBA Top Shot is making it rain in the NFT space as fans and collectors spend thousands of dollars to buy their favorite video trading cards in digital form. 

Ever since the platform’s launch in 2020, NBA Top Shot rivals against the best-selling NFT collections in the marketplace. Here’s everything you need to know about NBA make NFTs with NBA Top Shot: 

Trading cards have always been a popular and valuable asset to own for basketball fans. Every year the NBA releases official trading cards in packs of basketball players and historical moments. The auction for these cards is actually nerve-wracking with die-hard fans pouring hundreds of dollars just to collect that one trading card. 

The most expensive Trading card to be sold is the 1948 Bowman #69 George Mikan valued to be around $90,000 which features a legendary moment in basketball history. 

As technology advanced, non-fungible tokens were introduced to the world where individuals could digitally own assets that exist only in the world. Seeing the surging popularity, the NBA makes NFTs for basketball fans to collect. 

NBA Top Shot
NBA Top Shot | Source: Twitter

What is NBA Top Shot?

NBA Top Shot is a basketball-centric NFT platform by Dapper Labs in partnership with National Basketball Association (NBA). It is basically a marketplace for sports fans to trade virtual trading cards of historical sports moments, especially in basketball, and have digital ownership of them in a blockchain. 

The platform operates on the FLOW blockchain, an environment-friendly, highly scalable, and low-fee transaction network. NBA NFTs of favorite moments that users can buy using credit cards, making it easier for non-crypto fans to buy NFTs. 

“At its core it’s digital collectibles. They’re multimedia and data smashed together into a token,” explained Caty Tedman, the VP of partnerships at Dapper Labs, back in 2020.

The idea of building an NFT platform had been in discussion since 2018 between Dapper Labs and NBA. In 2020, NBA Top Shot released a BETA version and dropped legendary moments from 2019 to 2020 as NFT trading cards sold in packs to see the reaction and response to the new platform.

Later, Top Shot officially launched its website which got massive attention from fans worldwide. The hype kept on increasing as celebrities poured their money on expensive NBA make NFTs. In 2021, Jesse Schwarz bought a Top Shot trading card of LeBron James for $208,000, which is known to be the most expensive sale of all time on the platform. 

Trading cards
NBA Top Shot trading cards | Source: nbatopshot.com

NBA makes NFTs: Top Shot Trading cards

NBA Top Shot cards are basically basketball Moments paired with attractive digital art providing exclusive benefits to holders. From signature moves and winning shots to thrilling blocks and other exciting events, fans can hold video clips of their favorite players in the NBA and WNBA for a lifetime. 

Each NFT trading card features player stats, description, and a collectible tier for fans to know more about their rising stars or legendary veteran players. 

The process of NBA Moments is quite simple. Since NBA has given a license to Dapper Labs, the company captures legendary moments in the form of videos and then mints them as NFTs with a digital serial number to verify and authenticate the moments. 

The trading cards are made in limited editions for games to ensure they remain scarce and hold value for a long time. Additionally, the rarity traits are also designed with great precision to ensure the rare ones are entirely separate from the common ones.  

NBA Top Shot Moments | Source: Twitter

How does NBA Top Shot work?

NBA Top Shot has its own marketplace where owners can buy, sell, and trade NBA trading cards. Like OpenSea, users can post a bid price, and those who are interested simply buy it using their credit card or crypto wallet. 

NBA Top Shot drops a pack of NFT trading cards called Moments minted in sets as part of the collection. The NBA makes NFTs during the basketball season by capturing moments that hold value to fans; this is usually done by experts who understand the market well. 

Every week, the Moments NFT packs are dropped so that fans can purchase and own their favorite moments and players from the game. 

Other than that, NBA Top Shot has also been releasing old moments captured in the history of NBA game seasons as Moments for fans to collect. 

NBA Top Shot also gives fans the utility benefits of owning these NFT cards through a gamified experience such as completing tasks and earning rewards in return. This is usually related to trading card collecting. 

Top Shot tiers
NBA Top Shot tiers | Source: nbatopshot.com

NBA Moments Rarity Traits

To explain NBA Moments better, there are sets with many packs and each pack is part of the set containing NFT trading cards. The users on NBA Top Shot can purchase these packs, and the Moments are revealed once the transaction is complete. This means, no one knows what rarity trait cards they will get from the pack. 

Moments are divided into four rarity traits, and each holds a certain value to the owner:

Common(95.8%): As the name suggests, the NFT trading cards with the most percentage fall under the common category. Pulling a common Moments is quite easy and it’s probably included in every pack in a set.

Fandom(2.5%): NFT Moments with Fandom rarity are only available during certain live events during the NBA season. Sometimes, only the fans who are in the arena during the event can mint these NFTs. 

Rare (1.6%): Rare NFT Moments are hard to pull in every pack because they are worth more than common ones. These NFT trading cards usually feature historical moments of old NBA players.

Legendary (0.09%): The rarest of all NFT Moments are those with Legendary rarity traits. They are quite hard to pull and people have to often buy dozens of packs to pull one Legendary Moment NFT.

What are NBA Top Shot Packs?

As mentioned above, NBA Top Shot packs contain Moments NFTs. These packs are sold in sets as part of the series. There are two types of sets for NBA Top Shot packs:

Base Sets

Base Sets are affordable, everyday packs sold for around $9 each and contain three common rarity trait NFT Moments cards inside. People who are just starting on NBA Top Shot and not familiar with the platform buy them. These sets are usually launched in series rounds and releases. 

Non-base sets

Non-base sets are highly expensive premium packs containing a variety of NFT Moments including rare, legendary, and common traits. These sets contain different categories such as “Premium Pack,” “Playoffs,” and “Run It Back” and each is expensive based on traits they might pull. 

Other than that, people also buy NFT trading cards on the secondary marketplace. The rare ones tend to be quite expensive while common ones can be easily bought. People who do not wish to buy packs can purchase these cards on the market. 

How to value NBA Top Shot NFTs?

With so many rarity traits and varieties in NBA Top Shot NFTs, it can be quite hard for people to value between the trading cards, especially for those who aren’t familiar with card collecting and trading. 

Like the NFTStudio24 Rarity Ranking tool, many others can determine the value of NBA Top Shot NFTs. 

Value for Moments NFT is usually categorized by cards that fall in 1-99 or 100/100 rarity trait distribution. Additionally, Vanity numbers such as 69, 420, 800, 888, etc. are very high in demand. 

In Moments NFTs, the jersey t-shirt numbers of players and card numbers from the pack hold a lot of value. For example, if LeBron is wearing #25 in the Moment NFT, then card #24 will hold the same value as the one with the #1 card mint from the pack.

When buying on Top Shot Marketplace, many Moment NFTs have CC or LE written beneath the preview. The card with CC or “Circulating Count” shows the editions of that card currently in circulation until the expiry date. While LE or “Limited Edition” means it’s a rare card with a very low supply. 

The LE Moments NFT holds a lot of value and all of the most expensive NFTs are from the LE category. 

Top Shot Challenges
Top Shot Challenges | Source: nbatopshot.com

What are Top Shot Challenges? 

Challenges on NBA Top Shot allow holders to win prizes, Moments NFTs, and NFT packs. Users can participate in two types of challenges, Flash Challenges and Crafting challenges. Each challenge has certain requirements to fulfill before the deadline to win a prize.

The format for challenges is usually to collect a certain number of Moments for certain days or hours to receive a Moment as a reward.

The Flash Challenges are short challenges to the stats and events of NBA games with a deadline of a day or a week. For example, submit 12 Moments of specific requirements to win a Series 4 Chasing the Trophy Fandom Challenge Reward Moment™️ NFT. 

The Crafting Challenges are complex that require collectors to put their Moments NFT in Challenge Builder to burn or remove in return for a special reward. This challenge is built to improve scarcity and decrease the circulating supply of the Top Shot NFTs on the marketplace. 

What is Top Shot Quests?

Quests are quite similar to the Challenges; however, they are less specific than the Challenges. In challenges, the users should have specific Moments to win the prize. Quests are more general, making it easier for small collectors to win prizes. 

The users are required to create a showcase with listed Moments NFTs in a quest to win a Moments NFT. The rewards are quite similar to the Challenges as well.

NBA Trade Tickets
NBA Top Shot Trade Tickets | Source: Twitter

How to get NBA Top Shot Trade Tickets?

There are times when you might not like the Moments you pulled from a pack, so then what do you do? NBA Top Shot introduces Trade Tickets for users to exchange Moments for packs. 

To explain it better, each Moment has one Trade Ticket, no matter what rarity they have, which can be used to get an exclusive pack only on Trade Tickets. In this way, the supply for NBA Moments is reduced and no NFT is left without utility. 

Top NFTs
NBA Top Shot Top NFTs | Source: nbatopshot.com

NBA Top Shot records: Top 10 most expensive Moments NFTs

Now that you know everything about the NBA marketplace, here are the top 10 most expensive NBA Top Shot NFT sales in 2022:

  1. @easyaces purchased Lebron James Legendary #23 LE  from the “2020 NBA Finals” set Series 1 for $230,023.
  2. @Bigdog_brothers purchased Lebron James Legendary #12 LE from “From The Top” set Series 1 for $210,000.
  3. @jesse bought Lebron James Legendary #26 LE from “Comic” set Series 1 for $208,000.
  4. @Spicy_SpicyG13 got Lebron James Legendary #17 LE from “From The Top” set Series 1 for $179,000.
  5. @popo grabbed Fred VanVleet Common #11511 LE from Base Set Series 2 for $140,190.
  6. @easyaces bought Lebron James Legendary #12 LE from “From the Top” Series 1 for $125,000.
  7. @MCenterprise purchased Zion Williamson Legendary #28 LE from “Holo MMXX” Series 1 for $115,000.
  8. @pete_d bought Lebron James Legendary #5 LE from Base Set Series 1 for $110,623.
  9. @pete_d got Lebron James Legendary #8 LE from Base Set Series 1 for $110,023
  10. TSFSpaceCowboy bought Ja Morant Legendary #8 LE from “Holo MMXX” Series 1 for $100,000. 

For more details on transactions and top sales, visit nbatopshot.com/transactions/top-sales

How to buy NBA Top Shot NFTs?

Buying NBA Top Shot Moments NFTs is quite easy once you get used to the platform and understand how it works. 

When the news about NBA NFTs came out for the first time, the NFT sales on the NBA Top Shot marketplace peaked at an all-time high. Since then, the Top Shot NFTs have been gaining a lot of attention from basketball fans and players. 

Here is how you can buy the NBA make NFTs on the Top Shot marketplace:

Make an account:

First, you need to make an account with Dapper Labs, which will automatically create a wallet to store your collectibles as well.

  1. Click on Sign-up in the upper right corner.
  2. You can choose to sign up using your Google account or email.
  3. Fill in your details and you are ready to join in.

Join Discord:

As soon as you sign in, a bunch of introduction videos will come up that you can watch or skip. Then, you will be asked to join the NBA Top Shot Discord channel to be part of the community.

Select the team:

Basketball is all about picking teams and NBA Top Shot allows you to pick your favorite team from the list.

Set Username:

Once you are done picking a team, a randomly generated username will be made. You can change your username by going to your Dapper Labs profile.

Transfer funds:

Load the account up with some funds to buy Moments NFT from the Top Shot Marketplace. Go to “Payment and Payouts” and enter the amount you wish to transfer. You can transfer fiat currency via credit card or crypto tokens. As of now, Dapper accepts Bitcoin, Ethereum, BitcoinCash, DAI, and USDC. 

Buy NBA Top Shot NFTs:

Once you have the network fees and see the funds in your wallet, it’s time to buy yourself some Top Shot NFTs. 

Sorare x NBA Top Shot: Fantasy basketball game

Sorare is a platform widely known for NFT gaming and digital sports collectibles. It recently announced a partnership with NBA Top Shot to launch the official NBA Fantasy basketball game.

The NBA is looking for ways to expand the trading cards NFT utility in Web3 through different projects. This is the first big initiative that will give basketball fans a chance to enjoy what they collect with a game. 

The users can collect Ethereum-based NFTs and create a lineup with their trading cards to enter a league to earn rewards. Additionally, people who don’t own any NFTs will receive free player cards that they can use for a free-to-play experience.

Holiday-Featured Drops

In 2022, NBA Top Shot released many holiday-featured trading cards for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Black Friday, and New Year.

Thanksgiving and Black Friday Hot Pack

On the Black Friday event on November 21, 2022, 3,625 total Rare packs featuring Jayson Tatum, Donovan Mitchell, and Talen Horton-Tucker were dropped along with For The Win Buzzer beaters.

The day before Thanksgiving, the marketplace also offered black Friday-priced packs that could include Rare, Rookie Debut, Parallel Base Set, or Common Moment.

The collectors could buy 1-3 Elite packs and Hot packs based on their Top Shot Score.

12 Days of Hoopsmas

To make the holiday season even more special, NBA Top Shot released a 12-day event. Holders could participate in exciting events, drops, and other activities.

The owners would receive rewards for gifting their Moments to the new TopShotSecretSanta account such as:
– Gift cards
– Infinite Objects displays
– Marketplace credit
– NBA Jam Arcade Cabinets

Every time an individual gifted a Moment to the account, they also received a new Moment from a collector on Dec 23. It was a fun event that involved the community members celebrating the festivities together.

Other projects

NBA Top Shot is continuously expanding. The platform recently launched proof-of-attendance tokens for WNBA, Ethereum-based collectibles called The Association and a multi-year deal with Coinbase.

NBA Top Shot is not just an NFT marketplace but also explores possibilities within Web3 that could pair well with its platform and satisfy fans.

Future of NBA Top Shot

NBA Top Shot Marketplace is one of the leading NFT trading platforms around the world. Many people have joined the platform to collect the video NFTs of their favorite moments of their favorite players forever. 

Although the popularity of the marketplace died down a bit during the bear market, the NBA season pushed the prices up and the Moments NFT are back in demand. 

For more information on NBA Top Shot and its upcoming projects visit the official website or follow @nbatopshot on Twitter.

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