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Ice Cube invites fans to become owners in BIG3

Ice Cube // Illustration by Kate Walker

Ice Cube invites fans to become owners in BIG3


Future. The BIG3 basketball league — co-owned and operated by Ice Cube — is offering some moneyed fans the ability to become fractional owners of the league… or leagues… of your choosing. While it’s a big stretch to think the major leagues will offer such a deal (imagine how much that would cost), doing so could give some leagues the shot in the arm they need to get back to the cultural relevance they used to enjoy.

“21st-century team ownership”
Ice Cube is inviting fans into the owner’s box.

  • BIG 3, Cube’s 3-on-3 basketball league, will now allow fans to purchase ownership stakes in the league’s 12 teams on the blockchain.
  • The NFT offering gives owners a seat at the table to manage teams and enjoy all the perks associated with that.
  • Fans can either purchase one of 25 Fire tokens ($25,000 each) or one of 975 Gold tokens ($5,000 each).

And holders get a lot of perks, including direct involvement in managing the team, selecting the recipient of the Player of the Week award, taking part in strategy calls with coaches and captains, meet-and-greets, signed merch and memorabilia (of course), and even access to practices and after-parties. Oh, and if your team wins, you also get a championship ring.

Additionally, Fire token holders will be able to vote on a team’s organization’s leadership (think  CEO, president, VPs) and even receive “exclusive intellectual property and licensing rights to team names, logos and merchandise.” That’s right, sports teams are going the Bored Apes route.

Courtside DAO
Interestingly, fans can buy ownerships in multiple teams at once, which seems to put less focus on team loyalty and more focus on financial speculation. BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz confirms that thinking, saying that “there’s a secondary market for these NFTs. Teams will start to have different values based on how they’re doing.”

BIG3’s offering comes in the midst of a sports-gambling boom — with the assistance of digital platforms and law changes in certain states — that is poised to bring in truckloads of money into the league’s coffers. Although the financialization of sports fandom may seem like a corruptible force, you may need to look no further than the public ownership of the Green Bay Packers to see how the BIG3 teams will fare.

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