What is Minting?

Minting in NBA Top Shot

To first understand NBA Top Shot, you must understand the blockchain. And let me tell you, it’s not that easy to explain.

But I will do my best.

Have you been hearing a lot about “crypto”? You are not alone. Over the past 5 years, interest in crypto has exploded and we have seen the proliferation of Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) so much so that now your parents probably even know about what they are.

Interest in the word “crypto” over time according to Google Trends

BTC and ETH are cryptocurrencies though. They can be used instead of fiat currency to purchase goods and services (just like cash). The blockchain technology that they are built on is completely different.

Luckily, we can Dapper Labs handle how all that blockchain stuff logistically works. What you need to know is that it’s what gives NBA Top Shot its competitive advantage over traditional trading cards and other online collectibles.

Essentially, the blockchain allows for them to “mint” and therefore verify (beyond a shadow of a doubt) that your NBA Top Shot moment is authentic. Think of it as digital amber. Amber – you know? The stuff we can see dinosaur fossils in? The moment is run through the blockchain, essentially encasing the Top Shot moment in digital amber. This means that you can’t recreate it somewhere else on the internet. It’s certified.

Amber Fossil High Res Stock Images | Shutterstock

Transactions also run through the blockchain, so all sales history can be tracked. We can see who owned it and what they paid for it FOREVER. Try getting that with some rookie card you bought on eBay or a pair of shoes you bought on StockX.

What is Mint Count?

Now, don’t get carried away and think that every moment on NBA Top Shot is unique and 1/1. They are not.

Instead, they have what is called a “mint count” or “mint number”. As with traditional trading cards, this is essentially the moment’s serial number that signifies the number of your / the number your card is out of (how many were physically printed).

For NBA Top Shot, it is no different.

Dapper Labs “prints” a number of digital collectibles (also called NFTs, again, more on that later) based on an NBA highlight (aka a moment). They are then assigned a 1 through whatever the circulating count is and then, they are either put into packs or held for a rainy day.

Note: not every minted moment on Top Shot goes into the market. Some are held by the account NBATopShot and others are simply not placed into packs so they can be distributed for promotions or drops down the road.

Circulating Count (CC) vs Limited Edition (LE)

I mentioned above the circulating count (CC). This is the term NBA Top Shot uses to describe a moment that is not yet “closed”. This means that they continue to mint more of this moment as they see fit.

Next to the serial number, you will typically be able to find out if it’s a CC or LE moment (see below).

All moments that at the time of this post are Circulating Count (CC).

Limited Edition (LE) conversely is a moment that will no longer be minted. The number next to your serial is the number of moments in circulation now and forever. This makes them more scarce and rare. Logically, they will be worth more on the market in the long term because of this.

Moments that are now Limited Edition (LE).

Why Does This Matter?

Understanding the minting process helps you better price moments and the Top Shot market in general.

Obviously, a lower mint count will mean that the moment is rarer. The higher the mint count and if it’s CC? Well, it’s hard to say, but my guess is that it’ll be less valuable…

Moments will always fluctuate in prices like in any market. Players will get better, players will get worse, and players will get injured. Top Shot even does challenges to pump other moments that may not be getting the most love.

Mint count gives you the basics to go out there and be confident in what you’re buying and selling.

Ultimately, you have to buy what you think is valuable, but it helps the moment’s value if it is scarce. That is what mint count gives to NBA Top Shot, one of the most coveted NFTs on the market!

Categorized as FAQs