MILWAUKEE – All of Wisconsin’s professional sports teams will soon be offering fans the option to purchase NFTs – but what are they and how do they work?
If you attended a game, you may have received a rally towel, bobblehead, or other memento. Experts say NFTs – or non-fungible tokens – are really just the next generation of sports memorabilia.
“If it comes with some cool perks like free tickets to Summerfest or a free concert, it will bring fans together with that stuff,” Bucks fan Ryan Zankl said.
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The Cudahy native has nearly 500 NFTs from various vendors. Her first purchase, a Disney item, jumped nearly 5,000% in value in just four months.
“Once I saw that, I was just hooked — and I kept buying and buying and buying, and looking for other platforms,” Zankl said.
Milwaukee Bucks NFT rosters
NFTs are like digital licenses for a particular item.
“You create collectibles. They are limited run, which means there are a limited number of them, and they usually replicate something like the real world,” said Joseph Wall, professor of accounting at the Marquette University.
The NFT sports market includes digital trading cards, video previews and more. Many are offered in limited capacity – a few hundred or a few thousand – which helps drive up their value on second-hand markets.
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“It’s really kind of a new generation of memorabilia,” Bucks chief marketing officer Dustin Godsey said.
Starting with Friday’s Milwaukee Bucks game, the team is gifting 20,000 fans with a collectible digital poster – debuting “Fear the Deer NFTs”.
“Physical pieces aren’t going away, but it’s just another opportunity for fans to have that kind of pride in owning a certain piece that’s specific and unique to those experiences,” Godsey said.
The Bucks plan to first offer NFTs to fans with tickets to the remaining three home games, then an online website after that.
The Milwaukee Brewers are also offering NFTs – digital trading card packs for players, available April 12.
If you think about it, the Green Bay Packers stock may also be similar – an original “NFT”.
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