Over the past week, cryptocurrency prices have dropped significantly. As of Monday afternoon, Bitcoin had fallen nearly 27% over the last seven days, while Ethereum fell 19% over the same period. Smaller cryptocurrencies also felt the pinch, and that meant falling prices for Topps MLB NFTs as well.
WAX, the cryptocurrency that powers the Topps MLB offering, peaked at over $0.26 on May 11. As of Monday, the price had dropped to just over $0.16. That’s a drop of over 38% off the peak price.
Topps MLB NFT prices based in WAX
The drastic drop has impacted the value of the Topps NFTs themselves. It’s hard to find a specific indicator that’s perfect for evaluating the Topps MLB market, but anecdotally, CryptoSlam.io has lowered the value of my own collection by about 37% since Tuesday. AtomicHub – the largest marketplace for buying and selling these NFTs – provides its own estimates for collection values, which have dropped by similar amounts this week.
— Daily Express (@Daily_Express) May 17, 2021
While NBA Top Shot prices have softened gradually in recent months, they didn’t experience the same freefall this week. That may be due to one of the key differences between these two products.
Topps MLB NFTs are bought and sold with the cryptocurrency WAX. That means that many – if not most – of the NFTs on the market are listed based on their WAX price. While users can also choose to base their prices in US Dollars, the actual transactions still utilize WAX. This makes the cryptocurrency a critical aspect of the value of the NFTs themselves.
Top Shot sidesteps crypto concerns
NBA Top Shot, on the other hand, runs on the Flow blockchain, whose purchases and pricing are listed in USD. So while users are buying and selling NFTs that rely on blockchain technology, the pricing is based on dollars. That makes these prices far more stable than many other crypto-based collectibles.
As a result, Top Shot hasn’t experienced the pricing drops that most other NFT products have dealt with in recent days. On Sunday, NBA Top Shot did over $900,000 in sales. That made it the leading NFT collectible by sales volume, according to CryptoSlam, surpassing usual leader CryptoPunks – based on Ethereum – which did approximately $775,000 in sales. Meanwhile, Topps MLB ranked ninth, with just over $100,000.
This leads to a long-term question for Topps MLB NFTs: how will collectors value these cards? If a Mike Trout No. 1 legendary exclusive sells for 420,000 WAX, is it worth $87,670 – the value of the WAX at the time – or will it keep its WAX price even as the cryptocurrency rises and falls?
The recent pricing changes suggest that, for most of the market, the WAX price reigns supreme, at least for now. If that attitude persists, it creates downside danger for investors when cryptocurrencies struggle. On the other hand, it also offers the tantalizing possibility of growth if WAX rises in price over time – something that most major cryptocurrencies have generally achieved, despite high short-term volatility.