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WNBA: NFT sales skyrocket

Basketball

May 13, 2022
SOURCE: ETHAN MILLER/GETTY IMAGES
SOURCE: ETHAN MILLER/GETTY IMAGES

The GIST: Hype for the WNBA season has translated into exponential growth for WNBA NFTs. On Wednesday, NBA Top Shot revealed that, since the beginning of March, sales of W digital collectibles on the platform doubled every week (!!!) leading up to last Friday’s season tip-off.

The context: The league’s players association (WNBPA) struck a partnership with Top Shot last August, making WNBA moments available for purchase as NFTs. The platform upped its commitment to the W last month with “W Wednesdays,” a weekly NFT drop.

The details: Las Vegas Aces NFTs have proved popular with Top Shot collectors — leading the way at almost 85K transactions. Aces forward A’ja Wilson is the most in-demand player, with nearly 37K transactions of NFTs featuring the All-Star.

  • In a survey of Top Shot’s Discord users, 58% of collectors said introducing WNBA NFTs to the platform increased their interest in the league. Count it.

Zooming out: In addition to netting financial gains, the numbers drive the fact that the W and its players can increase audience engagement for brands. The findings also demonstrate demand for women’s sports collectibles — a particularly notable development because, you guessed it, the NFT space is dominated by men.

  • While many (rightfully) argue that partnering with women’s sports will expand a brand’s audience, the WNBPA’s deal with Top Shot begs the question: Can women’s sports properties grow their fanbases via the NFT space?