The Chicago Blackhawks announced that they have entered into the wild world of NFTs and digital collecting. They revealed an initial batch of 12 8-bit characters up for auction and four 8-bit ticket designs available at a set price. Below are some of the initial designs that the Blackhawks put out:
What are NFTs?
NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, are (at a very basic level) indicators of uniqueness for a piece of digital media. It assigns a serial-type number to the digital asset that gets stored on a blockchain, which is publicly accessible and acts as proof of ownership.
Let me attempt to explain using trading cards as an example. You could have a Honus Wagner T206 in your possession. Your friend goes to Google and prints out their own copy of the Honus Wagner T206. You both own a copy of the same card, but who gets more money for it? An NFT makes it so that even though anyone can download/screenshot the Blackhawks’ creations, you can prove that you own the original through blockchain.
Worth it for the Blackhawks?
The world is moving closer to a totally digital landscape faster every day. Other sports teams and leagues are entering the NFT space, I think it’s a worthwhile endeavor. In researching the Blackhawks’ current offerings, it doesn’t appear that the NFTs they created will be a continuing source of income. In some NFT exchanges, the original creator gets a percentage of all future sales of the token (typically around 10%). The ‘Hawks don’t seem to have that in their current strategy. That said, they’ve now rolled out a new type of digital graphic that I’m quite certain will be monetized by the team in the form of apparel, giveaways, etc.