Bargain vs. Blue-Chip: Scouting Solana PFPs With Bodoggos and Mad Lads

BY Matt Medved

April 02, 2024

Solana has emerged as the leading memecoin casino, but what about its homegrown NFT ecosystem?

With the exception of Bitcoin Ordinals, the NFT market has largely suffered across the board during the latest round of memecoin mania as traders look to free up valuable liquidity for short-term opportunities. However, it’s not all doom and gloom for NFTs. Comparable to 2020’s DeFi summer, today’s “memecoin spring” is a critical wealth-generation event for the crypto space that will benefit NFTs later in the cycle.

As much as last cycle’s holders may hope that Solana memecoin winnings will eventually flow back to Ethereum NFTs, I believe the bulk of that capital is more likely to stay within the ecosystem. Why’s that? Aside from the desire to avoid unnecessary gas fees and taxable events in converting between chains, the reality is that many of those who made their money on Solana are proud to represent the resurgent chain — especially after commentators left it for dead following the FTX debacle. As Solana traders continue to feel the wealth effect, expect to see them start flexing the top Solana NFT projects.

Who stands to benefit from this? Mad Lads is an obvious choice. Since we first covered Mad Lads after its April 2023 launch, the project has blossomed into Solana’s leading NFT project by market cap ($235 million at the time of publication) and a top ten project across all chains. As for an undervalued Solana project, look no further than Bodoggos, the canine collection debuted by web3 media company The Nifty in June 2023.

For this week’s edition of “Bargain vs. Bluechip,” I will examine the two Solana collections through an investment lens. As always, this is not financial advice — simply an analysis of the collections and the opportunities they may present!

Bargain: Bodoggos

Credit: Courtesy of Bodoggos

The Collection: Bodoggos

Floor Price: 6 SOL ($1,217)

The Case for Bargain:

Before Nick O’Neill and The Nifty team decided to “choose rich,” they chose to launch a PFP project on Solana last spring. This was anything but a popular decision at the time, particularly in the wake of FTX’s stunning collapse. However, partner Easy Eats‘ conviction in Solana has paid off in dividends following the chain’s resurrection — both figuratively and literally with the royalties the team receives for each Bodoggo sale. That’s right — Solana creators can enforce royalties on-chain, safeguarding a revenue stream that has largely dried up on Ethereum.

Consisting of 8,702 spunky dog avatars, the collection minted out at an $80 price point in June 2023. Featuring five rarity traits and a series of playful accessories, the project has seen more than 264,000 SOL ($48.9 million) in total volume, with rare 1/1s selling for as much as 420 SOL.

While many may have only discovered the project through Nick’s viral “Choose Rich” video series, The Nifty team has been building in the space since 2021 and hosts one of web3’s leading morning shows on Twitter Spaces. Nick has long showcased his satirical sense of humor in his videos, memorably flying down to The Bahamas to “report” on FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried’s arrest.

However, the latest series has struck a nerve with those outside the crypto space who don’t realize that O’Neill is joking, and he has been milking it for every viral moment it’s worth — from hopping on Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy’s podcast to being trolled on TV by comedian Taylor Tomlinson.

Web3 is an attention economy, so Bodoggos unsurprisingly pumped during the height of last month’s “Choose Rich” saga and topped at a 10.5 SOL floor on March 12 when Portnoy’s podcast aired. Since then, they’ve returned to earth and are currently down more than 40% from the peak. As SOL’s price continues to rise and traders chase liquidity to feed the memecoin casino, Bodoggos look downright undervalued at current levels.

Increasingly, a bet on an NFT project is a bet on its founders. Given Nick’s newfound virality, the long-standing relationships that Pio and Easy have built across web3, and the built-in distribution that the project enjoys with The Nifty, there should be plenty of opportunities to create long-term value for Bodoggo holders as the bull run continues.

Blue-Chip: Mad Lads

A collage of Mad Lads PFP NFTs
Credit: Mad Lads

The Collection: Mad Lads

Floor Price: 130.77 SOL ($28,819)

The Case for Bluechip:

The bull case for Mad Lads is simple: bet on proven winners.

Following DeGods’ migration to Ethereum, Mad Lads have taken over the Solana PFP game. Boasting a fervently engaged and supportive community, actual innovation in the xNFT token standard, and strong representation in airdrop allocations, the project is an easy pick to benefit from the Solana community’s come-up.

Founded by former FTX employees Armani Ferrante and Tristan Yver, Mad Lads launched on their wallet app Backpack in April 2023 with 10,000 characters designed by artist Yann Penno. The challenges surrounding its mint are now a part of the project’s storied lore as an onslaught of bots forced a 24-hour delay and relaunch amidst extortion threats and DDOS attacks.

To combat the bad actors, Backpack’s devs cleverly created two portals to discern between humans and bots, allowing legitimate users to mint while tricking bots into sending SOL to a “honeypot” contract and receiving nothing in return. While that fake contract received approximately $250,000 of SOL, the devs elected to return the funds. As word spread about the team’s heroics, secondary sales went through the roof, and Solana’s co-founders Anatoly Yakovenko and Raj Gokal even bought in and changed their PFPs in support of the project.

Between November and December 2023, Mad Lads went on a parabolic rise that saw the floor ascend from 45 SOL to a peak of more than 218 SOL. While the price has declined about 22% over the past month due to SOL’s price increase and the flight to liquidity, Mad Lads are still holding their value better than many other leading projects. For example, Tensorians and Solana Monkey Business are down more than 50% in that timeframe, while Claynosaurz has dropped more than 45%. Projects that show resilience and strength during downturns tend to be the ones that perform best when the pendulum swings back.

Most notably, Mad Lads holders are also passively raking in thousands of dollars from the project’s inclusion in a number of notable airdrops, including Wormhole’s $W, Parcl’s $PRCL, Pyth Network’s $PYTH, and Dymension’s $DYM. The Wormhole airdrop allocation alone is worth more than $26,000 in current pre-market prices, nearly as much as the NFT itself! As the airdrop meta continues to develop during the bull run, expect owning a Mad Lad to be a golden ticket to continued rewards.


Solana traders are currently making life-changing gains in memecoins, and it’s reasonable to expect some of that capital to start flowing into the blockchain’s NFT market.

Backed by a proven content team that has executed well in both the bull and bear cycles, Bodoggos is a low-entry opportunity for those looking to gain exposure and upside within the Solana NFT ecosystem.

Meanwhile, Mad Lads is poised to generate significant returns for holders as the undisputed blue-chip PFP on the chain. At the end of the day, owning a Mad Lad is more than just a flex and a nod to Solana’s native culture, it’s a gift that keeps on giving due to the top-tier airdrops that the project qualifies for. That alone is worth taking a flyer on for those who can afford the asking price.

Editor’s note: At the time of publication, the author holds one Bodoggos NFT.

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