NBA’s Crypto Chief Registers Second .Eth Domain as League Files for 4 NFT Trademarks

The basketball league’s launch into crypto could come sooner than later.

AccessTimeIconApr 11, 2022 at 9:11 p.m. UTC
Updated May 11, 2023 at 7:11 p.m. UTC

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is digging deeper into Web 3, tipping off plans for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in a series of April 7 trademark filings made public Monday.

The filing, submitted by the NBA for “The Association,” covers a laundry list of virtual items including “game tickets, game programs, trading cards, collectibles, memorabilia, jerseys” and even “memes relating to the field of basketball authenticated by non-fungible tokens.”

The league also appears to be in possession of two Ethereum Name Service (ENS) domains – nba.eth and theassociationnft.eth – belonging to a wallet associated with Adrienne O’Keeffe, the league’s head of gaming and digital assets.

According to public blockchain records, the nba.eth domain was transferred in December from NFT collector disco.eth to ENS core team member Brantly Millegan to O’Keeffe’s wallet, aok.eth. In March, theassociationnft.eth was transferred to the same address from a pseudonymous wallet.

In an earlier interview with CoinDesk, Millegan said the nba.eth transfer came about after the pseudonymous disco.eth heard Millegan publicly unpack the project’s policy of encouraging .eth squatters to give away or sell at cost domains related to known brands.

It’s unclear what precipitated the theassociationnft.eth transfer. Neither O’Keeffe nor the NBA responded to requests for comment by the time of publication.

The league’s crypto partnerships currently include a Coinbase (COIN) sponsorship and deal with the coveted NFT platform NBA Top Shot, though the league has yet to launch a crypto campaign of its own.

Zack Seward contributed reporting.


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Eli is a news reporter for CoinDesk. He holds ETH, SOL and AVAX.

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