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What Is NBA Top Shot: Turning Slam Dunks Into NFTs

2022-09-28 02:05:34


  • NBA Top Shot NFTs are digital collectibles that feature iconic basketball video clips.
  • NBA Top Shot NFTs run on the Flow blockchain owned by Dapper Labs, the same company responsible for CryptoKitties.
  • Two years since the basketball-themed collection was launched in September 2020, overall sales volume has surpassed $1 billion.

nba top shot

What Is NBA Top Shot?

NBA Top Shot is an NFT collection featuring iconic basketball gameplay clips minted as NFTs on a blockchain. It was created in 2020 by NBA in collaboration with Dapper Labs, the same company responsible for the play-to-earn game, Cryptokitties.

NFTs stand for non-fungible tokens i.e. tokenized versions of art, images, videos, cards, songs, and other real-world items. A unique blockchain address is attached to the NFT, one that contains information about the NFT and its present owner.

NBA Top Shot NFTs are called “Moments,” and are hosted on the Flow blockchain which also belongs to Dapper Labs.

nba top shot official

NBA Top Shot Logo featuring different NFTs. (Source:

One of the most expensive Top Shot NBA NFTs ever is the #23 Lebron James Dunk video clip from the Cosmic series (screenshot below), which sold for $208,000 in February 2021.

nba top shot le bron

In a interview, the buyer of that NFT, Jesse Schwarz, said,

“A lot of people tell me, ‘I can watch the same clip on YouTube for free,’” he says. “Anyone can watch it. But there’s only one original verified by the blockchain, and that scarcity is what makes it valuable in the long-term.”

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How Does NBA Top Shot Work?

Users can buy, sell, and collect NBA NFT Moments on Top Shot. Moments are similar to trading cards. They are minted in a limited amount, thus creating varying levels of scarcity depending on the NBA NFT. There are four types of NBA Top Shot moments, each varying in rarity:

  1. Common Moments: The largest collection in the NBA Top Shot, making up 95.8% of all NBA Top shot NFTs. They are easily accessible, and also the cheapest set in the entire collection. Common moments make up a large part of the Random Top Shot base packs.
  2. Fandom Moments: Fandom NFTs usually capture special moments during a season. The fandom collection makes up about 2.5% of all NBA NFT top shots. A popular fandom NBA NFT is the Killian Hayes Assist. Fandom moments appear regularly in random packs but in smaller amounts.
  3. Rare Moments: As the name suggests, these top shot NFTs are exclusive and very difficult to acquire which makes them very expensive. They make up about 1.6% of all NBA Top shot NFTs. These NFTs are often sold out by the time they are released.
  4. Legendary Moments: These NFTs usually feature video clips from iconic past games. Legendary moments make up about 0.09% of the total top shot NBA NFT collection. They are the rarest collection and they make up a significant part of the most expensive Top Shot NFTs.  One of the most expensive sets of Legendary Moment NFTs is the Ja Morant Dunk Holo MMXX (Series 1), with only 25 pieces in existence.

What Are NBA Trade Tickets?

Trade tickets were introduced in 2021, allowing collectors to easily swap Moments. They give all moments some form of utility no matter their rarity. Each moment is equal to one Trade ticket. Trade tickets cannot be bought, traded, or gifted. They can only be collected and used to redeem exclusive packs of top-shot NFTs.

How to Get NBA Top Shot NFTs?

There are several ways to get NBA Top Shot NFTs, such as:

1) Buying Top Shot packs

Packs are random collections of NBA Top Shots NFT that can be purchased from the official NBA Top Shot website. The contents are not revealed to collectors until the pack is purchased. Packs have different tiers usually containing a mix of rare and common moments. The price of a pack depends on the Moments within it.

nba top shot pack

Pack of Legendary Top Shot NFT Moments (Source:

2) Challenges

NBA top shot gives out NFT Moments through challenges. Challenges involve tasks that must be completed before a person qualifies for a reward. Some popular challenges that gave winners moment NFTs include Donovan Mitchell Challenge and the Seeing Stars Challenge.

nba top shot challenge

An NBA Top Shot challenge (Source:

3) NBA Top Shot marketplace purchase

The NBA Top Shot marketplace also allows collectors to search for unique “Moments.” Buyers are allowed to choose from different categories. NBA Top Shot also compiles price listings from several traders. The marketplace shows the floor price for Top Shot Moments and their average sale price.

How to Check the Value of NBA Top Shot?

The NBA Top Shot marketplace is the first place to go when checking the value of its NFTs. Alongside this, users can also use NFT aggregators like CryptoSlam.

In addition to the usual NFT valuation factors such as scarcity and popularity, there are several other factors to consider when checking the value of top-shot NFTs:

Floor Price

The lowest price a seller is willing to sell an NFT for is called the “floor price.” This price is subject to fluctuation, however, as overall prices move with supply and demand, meaning that the seller may be forced to accept a different amount to complete the sale.

Sellers can set any floor price they like, and buyers will then use that floor price to guide their bid size. Thus, depending on the demand, NFTs can sometimes sell for less than the floor price.

Sales History

The demand for a particular NFT can usually be inferred from its trade volume, which is calculated over several intervals—daily, weekly, or monthly. Higher trade volumes can indicate a rising demand for the NFT collection, which would mean a rise in value, and thus prices. A reduction in trade volume can indicate falling demand, which would mean a decrease in value.

The NBA Top Shot marketplace can therefore give buyers a gauge as to the popularity of a certain NFT by analyzing its trade volume trends over. If volume seems to be trending downward, buyers may wish to exercise extra caution before making a buying decision.

Who Owns NBA Top Shot?

NBA top shot collection is owned by NBA in partnership with Dapper Labs; Dapper Labs mints the NFT, the NBA licenses each NFT Moment. The NBA also decides which Moments to mint as NFTs as well as how many pieces they will mint per collection. The NBA makes a percentage from the sale of each Moment NFT, even when the trade is between individuals (P2P).

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NBA Top Shots NFT Future Developments

Dapper Labs announced in February 2022 that they will be launching the NBA All-Star VIP Pass NFT Auction and Giveaway. These NFTs will give holders a VIP pass for the next five NBA All-Stars, as well as signed merchandise and voting rights on upcoming Moments. In addition, Dapper Labs is reportedly planning to create a play-to-earn metaverse game featuring Top Shot Moments–in real time.

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