Sorare’s MLB NFT bet: The game is key

Hello and welcome to Protocol Fintech. This Thursday: Sorare’s fantastic bet, Coinbase’s bankruptcy warning and the end of Facebook Pay.

out of the chain

It’s a staggering amount of value that has been vaporized in the crypto meltdown: the total valuation of coins tracked by CoinMarketCap has fallen from $3 trillion at the market’s peak in November to less than $1.3 trillion. dollars. It doesn’t matter if you’re a so-called utility token like Polygon’s matic or a meta joke like shiba inu coin – almost all big cryptos are down. Traders don’t seem to discriminate, which is as much a signal as a token’s losses.

—Owen Thomas (E-mail | Twitter)

The game is the thing

The Crypto Market Is In A Massive Slowdown And NFTs Are Not Safe From Crash, Even Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs Are Selling For fractions of their previous prices.

Despite this, a new genre of NFT is taking hold that merges fantasy sports and collectibles. The challenge for this emerging market is how to make games appealing to players, and not reliant on investor speculation. If it works, it could establish an NFT market sector that is resistant to market swings.

Fantasy sports and NFTs make a compelling combination. And the growth of NFT fantasy sports is important for blockchain technology more broadly, as an example of using crypto beyond investment and speculation.

  • Startup Sorare, which raised $680m at a valuation of $4.3bn last year, has built an NFT-based fantasy football game that is widely played internationally with $350m active users per month. Now it’s taking that model to the United States through a deal with MLB and the MLB Players Association to create an NFT-based fantasy baseball game.
  • Sorare’s football game allows users to acquire “cards” from real players and receive points when the player does something, such as scoring a goal. Users can play in tournaments against other managers for prizes such as rarer cards or ether. There is also a free version, which requires no purchase.
  • The cards are NFTs, which consumers own. And NFTs can be bought, sold or traded. It also means that if a certain player performs very well, that NFT could increase in price in the market.
  • Sorare made $325 million in NFT card sales in 2021, up from $8 million in 2020, said Ryan Spoon, COO at Sorare and former BetMGM and ESPN executive. Sorare offers a range of different game types in its football game, such as games with only rookie cards, or geographic leagues or underdog games for lower level players. There are also more advanced games for users with rarer cards.

Baseball is a natural first major American sport for Sorare. It has stat-heavy games and a long-standing fantastic following.

  • Sorare is already in the US market with his MLS deal. Sorare’s MLB game will have overall similarities to his football game in terms of NFT, but will have some features unique to baseball, such as pitching games.
  • Sorare hopes to expand into other sports after baseball, Spoon said. Meanwhile, the company hopes to cross-reference its games and users so that, for example, baseball fans in the United States can become football fans through Sorare.

With its push toward more sports, Sorare is increasingly in competition with Dapper Labs, which offers popular NFT collectibles for the NBA, NFL, and UFC. One of the challenges Dapper has faced is making sure his games are fun for fans and not just a place for speculators to flip NFTs. Developing compelling gameplay is a challenge that is arguably trickier than developing blockchain infrastructure. But the alternative is to throw oneself at the mercy of a ruthless market.

— Tomio Geron (E-mail | Twitter)

A version of this story first appeared on Read it here.


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on the money

On protocol: A new SEC filing by Coinbase has warned that users could lose their crypto assets if the exchange fails. Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong reassured users that they were not at risk of bankruptcy and the warning was required by a recent SEC notice.

The European Commission is reportedly considering strict restrictions on stablecoins. The European Commission and Parliament are at variancewith the commission favoring a curb on the widespread use of stablecoins and the parliament favoring regulatory oversight instead.

Also on Protocol: Meta is officially rebranding Facebook Pay as Meta Pay, since Facebook Pay hasn’t made sense for a while now. The change also reflects Meta’s struggles to understand how its finance division fits in with the rest of the business.

Distributed Ledger partners with Mobile for bitcoin mining project. The Alabama city will host the bitcoin mining project at the GulfQuest National Maritime Museum, aimed at creating a new “sustainable” source of revenue for the city. the three power stations those closest to Mobile are coal and natural gas.


Federal Reserve Govt. Christopher Waller says the central bank will take inflation seriously this time, promising to raise interest rates to fight it. “We know what happened to the Fed not taking inflation work seriously in the 1970s, and we won’t let that happen,” he mentioned during a round table.

The popular Azuki The floor price of the NFT collection collapsed on Monday. Why? NFT Twitter panicked after the collection’s founder revealed his involvement in projects that had been scrapped. “Azuki draws on lessons learned from creating Phunks and other projects. It taught me to lead, not follow. the founder of Azuki, known as Zagabond, tweeted.

SECOND Chair Gary Gensler don’t think it’s a coincidence that the top three stablecoins are all linked to major exchanges. “Each of the Big Three was founded by trading platforms to make it easier to trade on those platforms and potentially avoid AML and KYC,” he said in an interview with Bloomberg.

Moves and hires

Petal has appointed Ali Heron as Chief Technology Officer. Heron was more recently Head of Credit Startup Engineering and Senior Vice President at Two Sigma Investments before joining Petal.

CFTC Commissioner Kristin Johnson has hired Bruce Fekrat as chief counsel. Fekrat was previously Executive Director and Associate General Counsel at CME Group, where he served as senior regulatory advisor on a number of issues, including digital assets.

Aida Álvarez has joined the board of directors. Alvarez was Previously the head of the United States Small Business Administration during the Clinton administration. has also named Michael DeAngelo as chief human resources officer. DeAngelo was previously director of human resources at Pinterest, and was previously responsible for human resources for various Google teams.

Coinbase has launched its Summer 2022 Community Ambassador Program. the ambassadors will work remotely as part-time contractors. The program is largely aimed at university students interested in cryptography.

DriveWealth has appointed Terry Angelos as Global Managing Director. Angelos was more recently SVP and Global Head of Fintech and Crypto at Visa


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Thanks for reading – see you tomorrow!

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