What is NBA Top Shot? A Beginner’s Guide

The non-fungible token (NFT) market, once hailed as the future of art and collectibles, has seen a lot of changes in recent years. While its meteoric rise has cooled, select collections continue to carve a niche for themselves, especially those that bring genuine value and rich heritage to the table. Enter NBA Top Shot: a combination of the world’s premier basketball league and cutting-edge digital technology.

This article delves deep into what NBA Top Shot is, how it operates, the essence of its prized Moments, and more. I will also look at some of the potential investment opportunities it offers, compared to both traditional assets and other NFTs.

Although I wouldn’t call myself a huge sports fan, projects like this one (and fan tokens) make me incredibly excited. I believe that as the digital realm continues to evolve, it is platforms like NBA Top Shot that will be able to stand the test of time.

What Is NBA Top Shot?

NBA Top Shot is a groundbreaking digital platform where basketball fans can buy, sell, and trade officially licensed NBA highlight “Moments.” This venture isn’t just a mere digital space; it’s the brainchild of the Vancouver-based Dapper Labs, a company that has seamlessly merged the love for sports with technology, and the National Basketball Association.

The next level of sports engagement

Unlike traditional sports memorabilia such as physical trading cards, these Moments are digital tokens representing precise, exciting instances from NBA games. NBA Top Shot operates on the Flow blockchain, offering fans exclusive digital collectibles that can’t be duplicated.

NBA Top Shot represents a dynamic shift in sports memorabilia and merchandise. It’s not just about collecting; it’s about being part of an evolving digital era where fans can interact, trade, and cherish their favorite moments. As the world moves towards becoming fully digital, NBA Top Shot, backed by the vision of the Dapper Labs CEO and team, stands out as one of the more interesting projects in the scene.

How Does NBA Top Shot Work?

  1. Blockchain Technology. Each NBA Top Shot Moment is a non-fungible token (NFT) that exists on the Flow blockchain. This ensures the authenticity, scarcity, and ownership of every Moment. In essence, the blockchain verifies that you own a specific Moment, and it can’t be duplicated or counterfeited.
  2. Purchasing Packs. Users can buy packs containing random Moments on the NBA Top Shot website. Just like with traditional trading cards, you don’t know which Moments you’ll get until you open a pack.
  3. Marketplace. Apart from buying packs, fans can also purchase specific Moments from other users in the Top Shot Marketplace. Prices for Moments can range from a few dollars to several hundred thousand, depending on the rarity and significance of the highlight.
  4. Digital Wallet. Once acquired, Moments are stored in a user’s digital wallet on the NBA Top Shot platform. From there, users can view their collection, put Moments up for sale, or trade with others.

What Are NBA Top Shot Moments?

Moments are not just video clips; they are exclusive video highlights capturing the NBA’s essence. Whether it’s a LeBron James game-winning shot, a legendary dunk, or a notable performance by any NBA player, these digital snippets ensure fans own a piece of NBA history. Each Moment includes:

  • Video Highlight. This is where the magic is! A short clip, be it of LeBron James or any other icon, showing their prowess on the court.
  • Player Stats. Detailed data about the player involved in the highlight.
  • Game Context. Delve deeper into the background of the Moment, understanding its date, significance, and opponents.

What Are Moment Tiers?

Moments are categorized into different tiers based on their rarity. The rarity determines how many copies of a specific Moment exist. Here are the primary tiers:

  1. Common. These Moments are produced in larger quantities, which contributes to their accessibility to the general public.
  2. Rare. As the name suggests, rare Moments are less common, and their limited availability makes them more sought after.
  3. Legendary. These Moments are highly scarce. Featuring iconic plays or players, they are considered prized possessions in a collector’s digital vault.
  4. Ultimate and Platinum Ice. The pinnacle of rarity. Only a handful of these Moments exist, making them the most valuable and desirable.

How to Buy NBA Top Shot Moments

Buying NBA Top Shot Moments is an exciting journey for basketball fans and collectors of digital assets alike. With the growth of NFTs, Dapper Labs has crafted a seamless experience for fans wanting to delve into the world of NBA highlights and legendary moments. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to buy them:

  1. Setting Up an Account: Head to NBA Top Shot’s official website and create an account. This is your gateway to the world of digital NBA highlights.
  2. Browsing the Marketplace: The Shot Marketplace is the central hub where users can browse available NBA Top Shot Moments. From common moments that capture regular game highlights to the much-coveted legendary moments, the marketplace offers a variety.
  3. Choosing Your Pack: NBA Top Shot offers different types of packs. For beginners, a starter pack containing common moments is recommended. For those seeking more rarity, legendary packs might be their go-to, although these can be pricier and harder to come by.
  4. Payment: Once you’ve selected your desired moments or packs, you can proceed to checkout. Most major credit cards are accepted.
  5. Enjoying the Moment: After purchase, these moments will be added to your digital collection. Relive a Michael Jordan iconic play or recent game highlights anytime you wish.
  6. Mobile Game Integration: Dapper Labs has taken the experience a step further. With plans to integrate NBA Top Shot Moments into a new generation of games and mobile game platforms, fans can utilize their moments in various interactive ways.

Can You Make Money off of NBA Top Shot?

The allure of NBA Top Shot doesn’t just stop at the love for the game or collecting; it’s also seen as an investment avenue. But how does it compare with traditional assets, like the physical trading card business, or even other NFTs?


  • Digital Ownership. NBA Top Shot Moments are digital assets, making them impervious to physical damage—a contrast to physical cards that can degrade over time.
  • Global Marketplace. With the Shot Marketplace, one can sell to basketball fans worldwide. Meanwhile, a physical trading card might need physical logistics.
  • Rarity and Authenticity. The blockchain ensures the authenticity of every moment, negating the risk of counterfeit intrinsic to the trading card business.
  • Integration with Digital Platforms. Dapper Labs’ innovative approach allows these moments to be used in a new generation of games, enhancing their utility.
  • High Return on Investment. Some legendary moments, like those of Michael Jordan, have been sold for hundreds of millions of dollars, showcasing the massive potential returns.


  • Market Volatility. Just like other digital assets, NBA Top Shot Moments can be subject to market fluctuations, which can impact their value.
  • Entry Cost. Legendary packs, which contain the most sought-after moments, can be pricey. Investing in them requires a significant initial outlay.
  • Digital Nature. Although digital format is an advantage in many respects, some collectors prefer the tactile feel and nostalgia of physical cards.
  • Secondary Market Fees. Selling moments on the secondary market can come with associated fees, reducing profit margins.

While NBA Top Shot, steered by Dapper Labs, brings an exhilarating and modern experience to basketball enthusiasts, potential investors must understand the market. The platform has revitalized the trading card business in a digital age, making it an exciting, albeit speculative, venture.


Should you buy NBA Top Shot packs?

Purchasing NBA Top Shot packs depends on your interests and investment objectives. If you are an avid basketball enthusiast wanting to be part of a modern collectible movement, NBA Top Shot offers a fresh and exciting way to connect to your idols. Being a part of the NBA Top Shot community provides not just ownership of digital highlights but also an opportunity to interact with like-minded fans.

Additionally, some users have seen financial gains by reselling rare moments. However, it’s crucial to remember that, as with any investment or collectible, the market can be volatile. Before buying, it’s advisable to understand the platform and its market dynamics and only invest what you’re willing to lose.

How to open an account on NBA Top Shot?

  1. Visit the Official Website. Go to the NBA Top Shot official website.
  2. Sign Up. Click on the Sign Up or Join button, typically located in the top right corner.
  3. Provide Details. Fill in the required details, which might include your name, email address, and password.
  4. Verification. After filling in your details, you might be asked to verify your email address by clicking on a link sent to your email.
  5. Set Up a Wallet. Once verified, you’ll be prompted to set up a digital wallet. This wallet is crucial as it will store your NBA Top Shot Moments.
  6. Join the NBA Top Shot Community. After setting up your account, you can start participating in discussions, buying packs, or trading moments with other community members.

Remember, always ensure you’re using a secure password, and never share your login details with anyone.

Disclaimer: Please note that the contents of this article are not financial or investing advice. The information provided in this article is the author’s opinion only and should not be considered as offering trading or investing recommendations. We do not make any warranties about the completeness, reliability and accuracy of this information. The cryptocurrency market suffers from high volatility and occasional arbitrary movements. Any investor, trader, or regular crypto users should research multiple viewpoints and be familiar with all local regulations before committing to an investment.

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