NFTs. Non-Fungible Tokens. NBA Top Shot. What does it all mean? Opportunity.

My goal over the next three months is simple: attempt to flip $1500 into a $15,000 simply by trading on Dapper Labs’ NBA Top Shot.

How am I going to do it?

  • Sign up for an NBA Top Shot account
  • Deposit $1500 into my Dapper Labs account
  • Buy cards low, attempt to trade them high
  • Follow the trends on Discord

    Note: I am comfortable with losing this $1000. Do not attempt to replicate my tactics if you’re not in a position to lose the amount you stake. This remains a volatile market.

What tactics am I going to employ?

Initially, there doesn’t seem to be a clear strategy that’s warranted the most success for NBA Top Shot account users. After scouring Google for various articles, there seems to be a lot of guesswork. The general consensus seems to be that Series 1 cards will rise in value if you’re willing to hold onto them in the longer term. An additional strategy is to acquire cards that are needed to complete the various challenges posted by Top Shot. My initial research sends me to Spotify and a quick search uncovers a world of Top Shot podcasts, all centring on the future value of the market and numerous ‘get rich quick’ bros.

After a couple of hours of listening to pre-pubescent podcast hosts wax lyrical about how much money they’ve made, all while remaining in what seems to be their parents homes, I am sceptical. However, this particular ‘dude’ has a whopping 400 YouTube subscribers so I guess I can’t be the only one taking financial advice from him.

I decide the best thing to do is to jump right into the Marketplace and test the waters with my first purchase.

Packs vs Marketplaces

Packs are the Golden Goose of NBA Top Shot. Drops are announced sporadically, following what appears to be a random pattern. People get in line and are assigned a number in the queue, and then you just hope there are enough packs left by the time your number comes up. More on this later, but as there were no open packs, my only option to get in the game is to enter the Marketplace and buy Moments from other Top Shot users.

My First Purchase

In order to qualify for some of the NBA Top Shot drops, you need to have at least one Moment. I decided to dip my toes in the water with a $5 purchase of the Utah Jazz guard Joe Ingles. The moment is a three-ball from Ingles, but the important details are as follows and they determine its value:

– It’s a Base Set Series 2 (worth less than a Series 1)
– It’s also one of 35,000 editions of this particular Joe Ingles moment, meaning it’s ‘Common’.
– I bought it from the ‘Lowest Ask’ seller for $5

The lowest ask now sits at $22, meaning Ingles’ value has risen four-fold in the five days since I bought him. You can see the Ingles Moment here.

My First Drop

Purchasing my first Moment enabled me to get in line for my first Pack drop. Drops occur randomly and are a fantastic opportunity to pick up some high-value cards for a fraction of the price. It usually occurs like this:

– A drop is announced for a certain time
– You log on to the portal ten minutes beforehand and get in line
– You’re randomly assigned a number in the queue and then wait
– Some drops might only have 5000 releases
– If you’re number 7000+, you have a slim chance of getting the cards.

This was a Base Set (Series 2) pack for $9 and containing three moments. This low cost, coupled with the low barrier of entry (you needed just one moment) meant this was always going to be a drop in high demand.

NBA Top Shot Queue

As well as that, the fact that just 5000 were being released certainly put me at a disadvantage,

After entering the queue, I was assigned my number and, unfortunately, it was not good news.

NBA Top Shot Queue

Alas, it was not to be and my search for a maiden Pack wasn’t going to end with this current release.

NBA Top Shot Sold Out

Alternative Strategy

After delving deeper into the world of poorly produced teenage Top Shot podcasts, I decided the best strategy to get my profit show on the road would be to invest in a higher calibre of card (no disrespect to Joe Ingles).

My mind was made up:

– The card had to be a Series 1
– It has to be Limited Edition
– It had to be within my budget of $1500

I spent the bones of two days on the same hamster wheel:

– Check the Marketplace
– Review a player’s season so far and potential upside
– Search his name in the Top Shot Discord to understand the value of the card.

But, I finally had my card.

Hey, Big Spender

I eventually decided to splash out on a Series 1 Limited Edition LA Lakers Markieff Morris 3-Pointer from The Finals for $645. The Moment is just one of 750 in circulation, and as it’s a Limited Edition (LE), its potential for an upward trajectory in the Marketplace is quite high.

Oh yeah, and some guy called LeBron James is the one dishing the assist to Morris. In the NBA Finals. For the Lakers. Money!

Here’s the NBA Top Shot description:

“From the corner! Markieff Morris of the Los Angeles Lakers catches the feed from teammate LeBron James and nails the deep corner three ball in a 19-point performance against the Miami Heat in Game 3 of the NBA Finals on October 4, 2020.”

While the inclusion of LeBron James cannot as of yet be proven to correlate with an appreciation in value, his presence certainly cannot be a negative.

Markieff Morris NBA Top Shot The Finals

Additionally, the card was valued at just $250 back on January 25th before rising to $300 on February 20th. The Lowest Ask is currently at $685, meaning the card’s value has risen by $40 in two days. My belief is that the card will hit $900 within ten days, as more releases come to market and all Series 1 cards experience a spike in value.


I also decided to purchase two other cards in the low-medium price range:

This Seeing Stars (Series 2) Common James Harden moment for $265,
– This Base Set Series 2 Karl-Anthony Towns Dunk for $74.

More on my rationale for purchasing those later.

Progress Update

As it stands, one week in, I’ve invested the following

– Joe Ingles S2 Common CC @ $5
– Markieff Morris S1 Rare LE @ $645
– James Harden S2 Common LE @ $265
– Karl-Anthony Towns S2 @ $74

Total Expenditure: $989

My portfolio is currently valued, according to MomentRanks, at $1037. That’s a profit of $48 dollars in Week One.

Status After Week 1: +$48

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