The Sacramento Kings will soon be the first professional sports franchise to accept bitcoins as payment. According to ESPN’s Darren Rovell, fans can start paying with the digital currency on March 1.
Fans will be able to buy everything from tickets to merchandise with their bitcoins, which are accepted through a processor called Bitpay. Rovell reports an emphasis on the digital age was one of the main selling points that kept the franchise in Sacramento.
“When I sold the NBA on keeping the team in Sacramento, my pitch included using the sports franchise as a social network to push the technology envelope,” Kings majority owner Vivek Ranadive told ESPN.com. “This is an example of that.”
While the phenomena may be new to professional leagues, Bitcoin has been seen peripherally around athletics in the past year. A college student who attended ESPN’s College GameDay held up a sign with his Bitcoin account number and received over $24,000 in donations.