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The integration between professional sports and cryptocurrencies has been rather rampant these days. While things might not be at the level that many crypto enthusiasts might hope, the little wins are worth celebrating.
This particular win is one that a lot of people in the cryptocurrency space have become rather familiar with; collectibles powered by crypto. According to a press release published on the NBA’s official website on October 17, the Sacramento Kings, a professional basketball team based in the capital city of California, has partnered with CryptoKaiju, the developers of Ethereum-based Kaiju toys, to launch collectibles.
Collectibles for Prizes
Per the release, the companies will be giving away 100 limited edition Kaiju collectible toys al through the 2019–2020 basketball season, with fans and crypto enthusiasts alike having the chance to win some. The collectibles will be launching in November, just in time for the start of the new season, and in line with the beginning of monthly scavenger hunts which the Kings plan to organize.
Each of the collectibles is backed by a specific non-fungible token, thus meaning that no two tokens are identical. The release also confirmed that 15 of the 10 toys would come out with a unique prize or experience, including but not limited to VIP tours, courtside seats to Sacramento Kings games, and signed team merchandise.
Ryan Montoya, the Chief Technology Officer of the NBA team, said that they had been encouraged by the reception of their crypto initiatives from their fans, and this launch is just further innovation to keep their crypto loving fans engaged with them.
He added, “We are thrilled to bring these unique, limited-edition collectibles and immersive experience to our fans. We are always looking for ways to be on the leading edge of enhancing fan interaction, and this partnership with CryptoKaiju is an exciting opportunity to continue to employ technology that delivers innovative products and content to our fans.”
Given the Sacramento Kings and their pedigree with testing out cryptocurrency initiatives, this isn’t rather surprising. The Kings were the very first basketball team to accept cryptocurrencies as payments for team merchandise, tickets, and other purchases, thanks to a partnership with BitPay that brought the feature to their team store as far back as 2014. Up until now, only the Mark Cuban-owned Dallas Mavericks have taken the plunge in the NBA.
In addition to crypto payment support, the Kings have also made some progress in the blockchain space as well. In a press release published on October 7, the team announced that it would be launching a blockchain rewards system on its gaming app.
Per the release, the team partnered with Blockparty, a New Jersey-based ticketing platform, to bring blockchain rewards to Call the Shot, its native gaming app. Throughout the season, Blockparty will track Kings fans and their activity while they bet on the app, and players will also be able to gather up points in a wallet hosted on the Sacramento Kings + Golden 1 Center app.
The release also noted that while users won’t need to pay to enroll in the program, the rewards can be redeemed for prizes such as game tickets and signed merchandise.