The sports sector has fared better in comparison to other industries in forging a long term relationship with their audience in the Metaverse.
“Sports is going to become really big in [in the metaverse] in the next six months,” Sam Hamilton, creative director of Decentraland Foundation, told CoinDesk.
In many ways, sports is an industry that has successfully experimented with crypto and also is a natural fit for the metaverse, combining fantasy and a passionate audience.
Non-fungible token (NFT) sales as part of NBA Top Shot grew by 72% last January, according to CryptoSlam. Its creator Dapper Labs, currently valued at $7.8 billion, has partnered with major sports leagues.
Other projects are also banking on sports’ popularity to find a larger gateway for crypto adoption. Main sponsor of Mexico’s national soccer team, Bitso, is one of Latin America’s largest crypto exchanges at over four million users.
Italy’s top soccer division collaborated with ConsenSys and video gaming platform The Nemesis to broadcast its first soccer match on the metaverse earlier this month. Before the World Cup competition that starts in November in Qatar, FIFA, soccer’s global governing body, is locked in Algorand as an official blockchain partner. This has not included the various NFTs minted to honor famous athletes and their most celebrated accomplishments.
Decentraland is also developing a virtual sports infrastructure. It recently announced that the Spanish sports platform StadioPlus will manage NFT sports content in Vegas City. Vegas City is one of Decentraland’s largest districts focused on entertainment.
The sports industry’s participation in the metaverse is just starting and hinted that the protocol he helps oversee will be increasing its metaverse involvement significantly in the next six months, according to Hamilton.
Decentraland is struggling to keep users engaged despite selling 172 NFTs at an average price of $6,100 during the past week with an estimate of 1,200 active players on the platform, according to the NFT Stats tracker.
Sports are part of the“compelling content” the platform is creating in hopes to strongly rise from the current crypto downturn that has hit alternative coin (altcoin) protocols particularly hard, said Decentraland Executive Director Agustín Ferreira. It is also a method to keep users entertained.
“We do content and run events because people enjoy them,” Ferreira told CoinDesk. “They’re an opportunity for us to build, prepare for the next round and make the most of the next bull market.”