Top Shot "Pranksy" Using Traditional Auction House to Auctioneer the World's 1st NBA Top Shot
...which is likely also the World's 1st NFT to be auctioned off by a traditional Auctioneer
In an effort to “bring more traffic to Top Shot” and expose traditional sports card collectors with what some (myself) might call the digital age of “sports cards”, @pranksyNFT (aka “Pranksy”) has engaged Heritage Auctions to auction an NBA Top Shot Moment for the first time in history. This may also be the first NFT (“non-fungible token”) to ever have been auctioned off from an auction house.
This is just a single NBA Top Shot Moment from Pranksy’s collection of 30,000+ Moments that are estimated to collectively be worth many millions of dollars.
Heritage Auctions is a big deal in the collectables space having recently sold a 1979 O-Pee-Chee Wayne Gretzky rookie card (PSA Gem Mint 10 with a population of two) for $1.29 million, along with a laundry list of every top sports card you’ve ever heard of (Honus Wagner T206, Michael Jordan rookie cards, Mickey Mantles, etc).
The NBA Top Shot Moment being auctioned off is the 2020 Zion Williamson NBA Top Shot Rookie Debut (Series 1), Serial No. 1 of 192.
Description for this auction from Heritage Auctions:
2020 Zion Williamson NBA Top Shot Rookie Debut (Series 1) - #1/192. It's an exciting new frontier in the sports collectibles marketplace, so new, in fact, that we suspect many of you will be informed of its very existence by this auction listing. But this league-sanctioned product called "NBA Top Shots" has already built up a global following in the early months of its launch, the result being a booming market that is seeing top media from Forbes to Fortune heralding its rise.
The item itself is entirely virtual, exchanged through a blockchain format similar to Bitcoin in that regard but different in the sense that the traded components are valued according to their specific contents and rarity thereof. This product is effective ownership of a particular NBA play, with lower serial numbered examples considered more valuable than those with higher numbers.
The offered NBA Top Shot represents a thunderous block from the first selection in the 2019 NBA Draft, Zion Williamson. The mammoth power forward from Coach K's famed Duke Blue Devils sends a shot from Denver Nuggets guard Malik Beasley twenty rows into the stands on January 24, 2020.
Beyond the supreme significance of Williamson as the most-watched rookie of the 2019-20 season, and the compelling footage that perfectly showcases the size and power he brings to the game, this particular offering's status as number 1 in a limited edition of 192 elevates it to the pinnacle of desirability. Let's also recall that Williamson wears the number 1 on his Pelicans jersey, another cherry on top.
Part sports collectible, part currency, the NBA Top Shot is undeniably a significant departure from the sports collectible norm, but it's no contradiction to celebrate the past while we look to the future. A link to the Top Shot will be available at our online listing.
Guide Value or Estimate: $100,000 - up.
The Moment appears to still be in Pranksy’s control. Once the buyer pays Heritage Auctions for the Moment, then Pranksy will “gift” the Moment to the buyer’s NBA Top Shot account. Traditionally, Moments are sold through the NBA Top Shot Marketplace with a 5% fee, which comes with zero risk. A Moment can be sold outside the Marketplace and avoid this 5% fee, but typically comes with risk unless there’s an escrow middleman. Heritage Auctions is an established company that would never risk their brand on a “deal gone wrong” and thus the buyer’s risk is zero in this instance.
Although I’d imagine that a current NBA Top Shot user will purchase this Moment, this move of auctioning the Moment through a traditional auction house (that has a highly affluent audience), will most certainly bring new awareness of the NBA Top Shot platform. This auction will get press during and after the sale, and if the new audience “gets it” like others on the platform have, then I would expect to see some more higher-priced Moments sell as an ancillary benefit of Pranksy’s auction.
In terms of the value of this specific Moment being auctioned off, that is subjective as NBA Top Shot is still so new. However, as of this writing, the Serial No. 1 (of 50) Zion Williamson rookie NBA Top Shot from the Holo MMXX edition, Series 1, is tied* as the highest NBA Top Shot sale of all-time. Jeremy Levine purchased that Moment from MatthewWoodsi for $100,000 six days ago. Jeremy is the Founder of Underdog Fantasy, Draft.com and StarStreet, and has been scooping up other 5-figure Moments with a group of investors that are also primarily from the DFS (“Daily Fantasy Sports”) industry as he is. Some big names from the DFS industry have entered NBA Top Shot, instantly “got it”, and have been relentlessly buying up some elite Moments on the platform.
As of January 30, 2021, NBA Top Shot increased the listing limit from $100,000 to $250,000, so I do not expect either of these $100,000 Moments to remain the top sales of the platform for too much longer. This maximum $100,000 listing limit has made some sellers not list certain Moments.
The Zion Williamson auction runs through 11:00 pm EST on Sunday, February 28th, 2021. The current top bid is $26,000 by @draftaddict. If you’d like to follow along, you can sign up for an account on Heritage Auctions and ‘track this item’ on the auction webpage. Heritage Auctions will email you daily with the latest auction price.
Bravo for this historical “Moment,” Pranksy.
Buyer beware: The buyer’s premium on this auction is 20%. (And I don’t think you’ll be able to pay with your crypto.)
*The other Moment that sold for $100,000 and is tied as the highest sale of all-time on NBA Top Shot as of this writing is LeBron James, Serial No. 1 (of 59) from the From The Top edition, Series 1 purchased by @spicy_seal2934.
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