Yesterday blockchain scaling solution Polygon announced a strategic partnership with DraftKings. The fantasy sports site has already launched its non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace in conjunction with Tom Brady’s Autograph and recently sold NFTs for football star Rob Gronkowski.
Polygon operates a sidechain for Ethereum. This takes the load of the main Ethereum blockchain, but the primary appeal is cost. Currently, Ethereum is experiencing volatile and high gas fees, which could easily mean that transaction costs would be more than the price of an NFT.
For example, some of the Gronkowski NFTs cost just $25.00. While the transfer cost is around $3.50 at the moment, it’s not uncommon for prices to be near $100 and much more. And that unpredictability makes it very unfriendly for mainstream end-users.
Additionally, while the main Ethereum network still uses electricity hungry mining, Polygon runs a Proof of Stake network for its sidechain, allowing users to claim to be environmentally friendly.
The Polygon announcement said that the sports company might operate a validator node on the Proof of Stake network. “DraftKings now has the option to potentially contribute to Polygon’s governance and help secure the network as a validator node with its own stake pool.”
At launch, DraftKings said it was using a scaling solution, so it likely was using Polygon already.
“Scalability and sustainability remain among the critical challenges of blockchain technology, so as we lay the groundwork today for the vision of DraftKings Marketplace tomorrow, the vast insights and proven products from Polygon around scalable solutions are invaluable,” said Paul Liberman, co-founder and president of global product and technology at DraftKings.
“Although DraftKings Marketplace is still in its nascency, we are bullish on the possibilities that blockchain, NFTs, cryptocurrency and more will present as we prepare for Web 3.0 alongside Polygon and the new innovations ahead for digital collectibles.”
Other big names operating validator nodes for public blockchains include Deutsche Telekom’s T-Systems MMS, which runs nodes for Celo, Chainlink and Flow, and Google Cloud, which operates nodes for Flow, Theta and Hedera where it is on the governing council.