Ethereum (ETH)–Despite the tanking price of Ether over the weekend, the second largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization can count on one positive development towards adoption coming out of a major U.S. sporting enterprise.
The L.A. Dodgers, a National League team for U.S. Major League Baseball and just one year out from competing in the World Series has announced their intention to hold a token giveaway using the popular ERC-20 platform established by Ethereum. As opposed to producing a currency made for transacting or replacing a digital form of money, the Dodger token is an interesting take on cryptocurrency in the form of crypto-based athlete collectibles.
According to the press release published on Friday, the Dodgers are planning the token giveaway for September 21, constituting the first ever “digital bobblehead” night–the branding for the event that the organization is using to describe the crypto-based tokens,
“Fans will have the opportunity to download a Clayton Kershaw, Justin Turner or Kenley Jansen Crypto token. The promotion is the first of its kind in Major League Baseball, and believed to be the first Crypto giveaway in sports.”
The press release goes on to give details specific to the event, which includes the first 40,000 fans in attendance receiving a card with a code for unlocking the virtual bobblehead via an Ethereum wallet. Fans will receive a random player token, with equal opportunities to unlock the three players listed previously. While the organization has yet to clarify how they intend to handle the digital bobblehead play going forward, Chief Marketing Officer Lon Rosen sees cryptocurrency and the Ethereum platform as a potential innovation for the sporting fan experience. In addition to being the first of its kind, Rosen outlines how the crypto giveaway opens a new experience for fans in addition to appealing to a novelty in the fanbase,
“We’re excited for our first-ever Crypto giveaway, and to explore an entirely new marketplace with our fanbase. We hope this piques the interest of Dodger fans, and will help launch a new age of digital collectibles and promotions.”
While the Dodgers use of crypto tokens to create athlete collectibles is a new entry into sporting memorabilia, this is not the first time a major U.S. professional athletic organization has been tied to cryptocurrency. In June the Sacramento Kings basketball team announced a partnership with the crypto mining hardware company MiningStore to install Ethereum mining machines in their stadium with the express goal of raising money for scholarships for workforce development and technology education programs in the Sacramento area–officially becoming the first sporting organization to mine cryptocurrency in a philanthropic effort.
As the crypto markets continue to reel from a massive selloff occurring mid-week, Ethereum in particular is struggling to recover from the sudden downturn. The valuation of Ether has been under heavy attack as more analysts and investors comment upon the sinking value of ICOs and the push to develop on the ERC-20 token. While Ethereum managed to hit an all time high of $1400 in mid-January, the price has since eroded with most of the market throughout the ongoing bear cycle of 2018. Yesterday, Ether dipped below $200 for the first time in a year, constituting greater concern for investors that the promising cryptocurrency platform is not reflecting in the price of ETH.