One of the sport’s biggest milestones is approaching its final match, as France and Argentina are set to face off in a scenario match on Sunday. Argentina’s Lionel Messi is set to win his first World Cup championship despite a storied career, but will have to overcome a powerful France side who have conceded just one goal throughout the tournament.
Meanwhile, crypto sports partnerships seem to have a drag that hasn’t been seen since the pre-2021 bull run, before big dollar spending on sports sponsorship was nearly as big as it is today. today.
As the market has cooled, sports offerings have also cooled. Let’s take a look at the activity in esports and crypto over the past week.
The sports slice
Red Bull Racing closes the door to Tezos partnerships
Tezos is apparently no longer a partner of Red Bull Racing, according to a report from SportsPro this week. Although little has been revealed around the partnership, the blockchain is no longer listed on the racing team’s website, and the Tezos branding – which was previously touted on the F1 vehicle – was noticeably absent during a recent exhibition.
While SportsPro innocently compares the suddenly seemingly terminated deal to that of Mercedes and FTX, a blockchain is noticeably different from a centralized exchange. Nonetheless, the deal likely signals a risk-mitigation tactic on the part of the racing club to reduce crypto exposure (as they also have an existing partnership with the Bybit exchange).
Other variables could certainly be in play, but to suggest anything more would be pure unfounded speculation.
Tezos (XTZ) is seemingly no longer a partner of Red Bull Racing. | Source: XTZ-USD on TradingView.com
Bear market recedes: Decentralized sports betting company raises nearly $5 million
Frontrunner, a decentralized sports betting platform, raised $4.75 million in its latest capital funding round, led by Susquehanna Private Equity Investments last week.
Speculative gambling markets and crypto degeneracy go hand in hand. Frontrunner has found success with a slick user interface that positions game odds in an easy-to-digest way, while also offering lines in some of the biggest sports leagues in the world.
Frontrunner is built on COSMOS and just launched its testnet in Q3, with cross-chain ambitions. In an interview with TechCrunch, Frontrunner CEO Neil Zhang spoke directly about this element:
“Until now, the majority of our competitors are part of the Solana ecosystem. But we really had more of a multi-channel type vision of the long-term vision of our products. And so we chose to be in the ecosystem of the cosmos first, which we’re really optimistic about in terms of cross-chain operability and some of the multi-chain technologies that are built there.
Shaq is the latest to face criticism over FTX ambassador status
NBA Hall of Fame icon Shaquille O’Neal is known for his dominant career on the court and his business moves off the court.
“I totally agree,” he said of FTX in an ad. Hindsight may be 20/20, as O’Neal joined sports icons like Tom Brady, Steph Curry, Naomi Osaka and others in defending FTX earlier this year. Mainstream publications have picked up on a clip of O’Neal saying he “doesn’t really understand crypto” in recent months, despite appearing in promotional assets for FTX before.
Either way, chances are none of the stars will know more about FTX’s business situation than we do until it all comes crashing down; what is most important is how they react in the future.
Steph Curry, Serena Williams and others named in Bored Ape lawsuit
A class action lawsuit filed against prominent holders of the Bored Ape Yacht Club, including NBA star Steph Curry and tennis legend Serena Williams, has been in the news for the past week.
Two plaintiffs believe BAYC’s creators, Yuga Labs, used athletes, artists, and influencers to promote the NFT Project without proper disclosures. The Federal Court record indicates that:
“…the company’s entire business model relies on the use of insidious marketing and promotional activities by high-profile celebrities who are highly compensated without disclosing them, to increase demand for Yuga titles by convincing investors potential individuals that the price of these digital assets would appreciate.”
It’s a tough roster especially for Curry, who was also named in an FTX class action lawsuit, and is now sidelined with a shoulder injury that will likely keep him off the day’s next slate. Christmas – which is notoriously one of the biggest action days of every NBA season.