Dogecoin (DOGE), a cryptocurrency borne out of a joke, can now be used as payment for tickets and merchandise for the Dallas Mavericks basketball team.
The National Basketball Association franchise confirmed Thursday that it has become the first major business to accept DOGE, allowing users to convert the digital currency to fiat using BitPay.
We’re proud to be the first business to accept the #crypto Dogecoin for payment using BitPay!
— Dallas Mavericks (@dallasmavs) March 4, 2021
The Mavericks have been accepting Bitcoin (BTC) payments through BitPay for almost two years. Interestingly, they were the second NBA team behind the Sacramento Kings to starting accepting BTC.
In addition to DOGE and BTC, Mavericks’ fans can pay for merchandise using Bitcoin Cash (BCH), USDC, GUSD, PAX and BUSD.
BitPay CEO Stephen Pair says the NBA franchise is helping to pave the way for cryptocurrency adoption:
“BitPay believes that with continued cryptocurrency adoption, the industry is reaching an inflection point that will forever change consumer confidence, trust and pave the way for blockchain payments to disrupt the way consumers and businesses receive and spend funds.”
Mavericks owner Mark Cuban confirmed the news to Cointelegraph and explained his rationale for incorporating DOGE payments:
It’s real. And why wouldn’t we take it? Our payment gateways support it. We will HODL any we get. And it’s great PR and fun to take it!”
The billionaire owner has flip-flopped on cryptocurrency in the past but appears to have embraced the digital asset class in recent months. He recently warned Bitcoin naysayer Peter Schiff that gold will cease to exist as a store of value as innovations in cryptocurrency make it easier for people to become their own bank.
As for Dogecoin, the cryptocurrency exploded in popularity earlier this year — even surpassing Bitcoin in terms of tweet volumes — after the same Reddit crowd that pumped GameStop focused their efforts on DOGE. Elon Musk’s warm embrace of the meme-based coin also contributed to its rise.