Sports and DeFi might seem an odd combination. The two industries have become closely knit in recent years — forging corporate partnerships, sponsoring players, seeing athletes and sports businessmen becoming some of the most vocal crypto bulls. However, it makes sense that they both mesh together so well. Sports continue to become uber-technical, as do sports-relevant business like bookmakers. They’re both also breakout investment plays; both industries have seen lots of attention in recent months as buyers hope to cash out on their trendiness and tech. So today’s Coinbase (NASDAQ:COIN) news doesn’t come as a surprise; the Coinbase NBA partnership simply furthers a relationship that’s already very close.
Things have really heated up between the cryptosphere and professional sports through 2021. NFL star Tom Brady, one of the biggest Bitcoin (CCC:BTC-USD) bulls, spoke at the crypto’s biggest conference, starred in an FTX commercial, and launched his own non-fungible token (NFT) site, Autograph. Meanwhile, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban exposed himself as a Dogecoin (CCC:DOGE-USD) fanatic. Cuban is making DOGE a payment method for Mavericks tickets and merch and plugging a multitude of other cryptocurrencies.
The year is not just one of sports celebs becoming fans of crypto, though. These industries are forging a number of working relationships, which are bringing broad exposure to each others’ audiences. FTX’s partnership with Major League Baseball sees umpires bearing the exchange’s logo on the field. The number-one pick in the NFL draft, Trevor Lawrence, saw sponsorship by Blockfolio in a deal inked before he was even drafted. Meanwhile, sports betting platform DraftKings (NASDAQ:DKNG) built up an impressive NFT marketplace, capitalizing on the sports-memorabilia market. The NBA is doing the same with its Top Shot NFT platform.
Coinbase NBA News Continues Trend of Blending Blockchain and Sports
With this busy year in mind, news of the Coinbase NBA partnership seem like a no-brainer. The two entities, alongside the WNBA and the NBA’s many associate leagues, are teaming up to make Coinbase the official sponsor of the leagues. The multi-year deal begins with this landmark season, which marks the 75th anniversary of professional basketball.
The partnership goes far beyond simply throwing a Coinbase logo somewhere in a broadcast, though. Through this deal, Coinbase will be creating exclusive content centered around NBA fans, which will help educate them about cryptocurrency. Without much in the way of specifics yet, Coinbase says this content will come in interactive packaging.
With the league seeing millions of viewers through the regular season and even more throughout the playoffs, the payoff could be quite large for Coinbase. And with other exchanges like FTX making their mark across the sports industry, it is a very savvy move for Coinbase to lock down a partnership with one of the four most popular professional sports in North America.
COIN stock is up 2.5% on the news today, with 5.3 million shares trading against a daily average of 4.3 million at the time of writing.
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