If NFTs represent a new gold rush for sports brands, it only makes sense that the Golden State Warriors would stake their claim. The team launched a series of auctions for digital collectibles Tuesday, some of which come with real-world prizes as well.
“We felt it was important to be the first team to do this,” Warriors CRO Brandon Schneider said. “The NFTs getting auctioned will always have that distinction.”
Golden State has produced two collections. One set, composed of 226 separate NFTs, is based on the team’s six championship rings, including a one-of-one ring that will come with a physical piece of unique jewelry. Physical rings will also go to the winners of the first edition of each of the six ring NFTs.
The other set highlights commemorative ticket-stub NFTs from historic moments in franchise history, with 10 versions of 10 different digital stubs, plus a one-of-one based on the team’s entire past. That rarest NFT comes with courtside tickets, as brands continue to combine digital and physical offerings.
Schneider said the Warriors established a digitization task force early this year—bringing together representatives across the organization including department heads—while working with the NBA to follow the league’s intellectual property guidelines. And though Schneider doesn’t see blockchain technology revolutionizing game tickets in the near term, he did mention the possibility of fans being able to add on NFT collectibles to ticket purchases.
The overall craze for blockchain-based collectibles has fallen in recent weeks, with different indicators down 20 to 60%. But Schneider said the team is committed.
“I know we’ll do things in the NFT space moving forward,” he said. “We think NFTs are the wave of the future…. I’m sold.”