The world of blockchain is slowly acquiring a larger audience. Expanding from its status as a niche technology, 2018 has seen blockchain and cryptocurrencies enter the world of sports. From ticket purchases, athlete wages, and now advertisement, here are a few examples of sports meeting blockchain over the last year.
Antpool and the Houston Rockets
Antpool is the well-known mining pool owned by world leading mining hardware manufacturer, Bitmain. Based out of China, Antpool has chosen to sponsor the Houston Rockets. Houston’s popularity remains sky high in China to this day due to Chinese Hall-of-Famer Yao Ming once playing for the team.
This sponsorship will bring their services and the world of crypto in front millions of eyes throughout the season.
Rockets vice president of corporate develop, John Croley had the following to say on the sponsorship, “We’re excited to work with AntPool as a conduit in the U.S. for their ever-growing business…The Rockets are always looking to stay ahead of the curve with technology both on and off the court and AntPool’s prowess with crypto currency makes for a great partnership.”
In similar fashion to Crypto Kitties, the MLB is utilizing the Ethereum blockchain to create digital collectibles. Fans of the MLB will be able to buy, sell, and collect digital items such as player cards and more. A recent tweet shows the type of digital collectibles that are able to be attained by enthusiasts.
The @Dodgers Crypto Token Giveaway is COMING FRIDAY THE 21st!
40,000 Figures will be given out, don't miss out! ⚾️
For more info: https://t.co/CX8KQ0gNgO
Check out the figures 👇#MLB #LucidSight #dapp #ETHEREUM #blockchain #eth pic.twitter.com/MRnyEN46Pk
— MLB Crypto Baseball (@MLBCrypto) September 19, 2018
Dallas Mavericks accept BTCÐ
Once a skeptic of blockchain, Mark Cuban announced earlier in 2018 that the upcoming season will see the Dallas Mavericks accept cryptocurrency as form of payment for tickets.
Although announced earlier this year, the NBA season is only just ramping up in the next month. Let’s hope the fans in Dallas take advantage of this opportunity to its fullest!
In a past comment with CoinDesk, Mark Cuban stated, “We will be adding a crypto payment ability for next season. We will accept BTC, ETH, possible some other currencies. [That’s] to be determined.”
NFL Players Association invests in Blockchain
Not to be left out, the NFLPA has invested in SportsCastr. This start-up provides a live, interactive platform for fans. Fans taking part will be able to interact with NHL players streaming.
This platform not only give players a method to earn crypto, but the NFLPA has acquired equity shares in the company itself.
Crypto at the Olympics
Although athletes participating at the Olympics cannot be paid for their performances during the event, they are allowed to sign sponsorships. Last year saw a first when Canadian Speed Skater Ted-Jan Bloeman agreed for sponsorship payment in crypto. The deal was signed with onG.social and CEEK VR.
I’m very excited to be the first ever #Crypto Sponsored Athlete. Thanks @CEEK #VirtualReality and @Ong_Social for being at the forefront of technology and this great achievement. Looking forward to a great relationship and the exciting times ahead. pic.twitter.com/mCHbNzkKW8
— Ted-Jan Bloemen (@TedJan) January 31, 2018
A Spreading Interest
It is clear that blockchain and cryptocurrencies have arrived in the world of sports. Each of these teams and sponsorship deals brings blockchain to the eyes of millions each season. As interest in the industry grows, look for even more teams to jump on board.