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A Year in Review: NBA Top Shot (Series 4)

A Year in Review: NBA Top Shot (Series 4) by Mr. ElvishPiper

For many of you reading this, it's been over 365 days since you first locked your moments. To say it's been a wild ride is an understatement, and I'm not just talking about NBA Top Shot; I'm talking about crypto, NFTS, collectibles, inflation, and the world and life in general.

For me, NBA Top Shot is a welcome distraction from the stress of life and the real world. I love the NBA and collecting the moments from the world's best athletes. Series 4 has been the best and most well-executed series in Top Shot's history. With a 24/7/365 marketplace and hobby, occasionally, it's essential to zoom out and look at the big picture. If you are ready, let's look at 26 different innovations, events, and promotions that didn't exist when you first locked your moments over 365 days ago.

1. RSVP Pack Drops

No more lines! No more alarm clocks set for 4 AM for international collectors! It's rumored this system increased work productivity by 420% on pack drop days in the USA alone!

2. Edition Level Offers

Can you imagine we couldn't make collection offers on moments a year ago? Nothing makes me happier than someone accepting one of my $1 offers on Daniel Theis moments!

3. Lockdown Challenges

Beginning with Rodman and Bird, lockdown challenges were introduced to help eliminate the pump and dumps of challenges in previous seasons. They are now the standard way set rewards are earned.

How did we not have player leaderboards? How did we track our collections of players? Without this, the 2022-23 Honors Reward set wouldn't have been possible!

While also known as the Alxo World Tour, these promotional events allowed Alxo to attempt to sell Magic Johnson, Klay Thompson, and Cade Cunningham to become his super followers! For other collectors, they were once-in-a-lifetime experiences!

6. Reels

The introduction of reels allowed the creation of one the best sets on Top Shot, Video Game Numbers. This was one of many ways the Top Shot team leveled up moment curation this series.

Similar to the Tapped In experiences, The Tour was a promotional event that allowed collectors to meet each other and hang out with retired players from their favorite teams. It made stops in Portland, Toronto, Miami, and Paris. Collectors also attended games and were able to purchase exclusive packs at the events.

8. Hot Packs

Let's be honest; the S3 pack experience wasn't good. Common base packs didn't even have a chance at rares! Three 60k moments weren't a fun ripping experience. Well, hot packs changed that. Chances of ripping rares, rookie debuts, spotlight moments, and parallels made me have that "wen pax itch again"!

9. Parallels

An explosive decision for Series 4. While it may leave some collectors feeling torn in a vortex, the thumbnail art is excellent, and I've enjoyed rippled packs more than ever before with them! (Puns intended, fam.)

10. Top Shot 50

This set was another step towards making S4 more cohesive. Having a set to put the best moments from the best players to make moments feel legendary is great for telling the story of the NBA season. Hopefully, this is a sign of a growing relationship between Top Shot and the NBPA, who voted on the players to be in this set.

While these technically started in the playoffs of S3, they were around for S4 and put over 1,000 collectors into NBA arenas to watch their favorite players and teams play and do things they usually couldn't. Who else remembers the T'wolves community playing pickup games on the court pregame this season?

12. Holiday of Hoops

This promotion by Top Shot may have been my favorite time of the year. This year's holiday season was fun and exciting, between the TopShotSecretSanta account and the gifting of grails from Harrison Barnes, Cole Anthony, and Roham.

13. Tags

Tags coincided with the previous promotion. While they don't do anything, for some reason, I want them!

14. The App

The much-demanded and long-awaited app arrived! It is a great way to communicate with collectors and drop surprise packs! The moment viewing is excellent, and in the recent conversation with Adam Silver, Roham said they plan to bring social features and the marketplace to it as well.

15. Locking and Burning Leaderboards

With a variety of prizes, including courtside tickets to the playoffs, NBA Jam arcade machines, autographed jerseys, Ticketmaster gift cards, packs, and anthology moments, these leaderboards always came down to the final buzzer, with many users waiting til the final buzzer to burn their cherished moments.

16. Predictive, Lock, and Burn Flash Challenges

This season of Flash Challenges was undoubtedly different from the previous series. Predictive, lock, and burn flash challenges were all introduced. I expect that Top Shot gathered a lot of data and that they will look different again next year.

17. Redemptions

The playoffs were more interactive and exciting than ever before with redemptions. While initially met with a lukewarm reception, these heated up as the playoffs continued. This innovative approach allowed the best moments from the biggest stage to be minted with real scarcity.

18. NBA Top Shot Bot

Introduced in the playoffs, this Twitter bot handle @topshotthisbot enabled users to earn moments by responding to NBA clips using specific hashtags and @ signs.

19. Redeem Links

The @topshotthisbot couldn't have been created without redeem links. Top Shot made gifting and account creation more accessible and easy. Click a link, create an account, and claim the moment! This is another way Top Shot removes hurdles to onboarding users into "web3".

20. The Rookie Revelation Set

This landmark set pushed the boundaries of moments to a level not seen before. I don't think anyone expected draft night footage of rookies in these moments. These reinvented what rookie grail moments look like. To learn more about them, read this article. Rookie Revelations - My quest to complete my first Legendary set (

21. Anthologies

Starting with the 3rd best basketball player of all time, Lebron James, these anthologies have begun to add the most iconic moments in NBA history to the platform. The latest version distributes them via rewarding top collectors. Having a weighted lotto system using Top Shot score (TSS) and adding the rest to packs has allowed any user to dream and possibly own some of the coolest moments ever.

22. New set/player UI pages/Playlists

It's just another upgrade to Top Shot to make the platform more collector and moment-centric. Grab a beer, play music, and watch the Ja Morant playlist. Do it now. I dare you.

23. NBACon

NBACon was another opportunity for Top Shot to build its brand, introduce itself to NBA fans, and strengthen its partnership with the league and the NBPA. The fireside chat with Adam Silver and Roham may have grabbed the headlines, but the next item on the list may be more important.

24. Geo Location Packs

These packs, specifically for people in attendance of NBACon, were gated to collectors in a geographical area. While it may be hopium, it may also have been the first step towards rolling this out at a bigger scale, NBA arenas, for instance.

25. Consistent Communication

Thanks to the app, mailbags, and a more interactive Top Shot Twitter account, communications improved vastly this season. While they didn't happen as frequently, the team has underpromised and overdelivered. This led to more excitement and surprises throughout the season.

This celebration is a historically significant moment in Top Shot's short history. Getting these moments into collectors' hands and the marketplace may have some short-term pain, but it also feels like a cloud of uncertainty has been removed. Early signs point to collectors having more confidence in grabbing these iconic moments with all supplies released.

If you have made it through to this point, thanks for reading. If you want the TLDR, Series 4 is fire!!!

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