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The Delphi Year In Review: 2021 Highlights, Staff Picks, & Hits

Dec 24, 2021 · 5 min read

By Nick Pappageorge

Editor’s Note

What are Delphi analysts reading over the holidays? In truth, more Delphi research. Below, you’ll find the best Delphi research pieces of 2021, handpicked by the analysts who wrote them. Our research team identified their favorite briefs from this year, listed below in no particular order.

Note: We’ve removed the paywall on all linked briefs in the spirit of giving. So please, send these on to friends and family you’re trying to cryptopill. (If you ask us, print-outs could make an excellent stocking stuffer). Happy Holidays!

With love,

The Delphi Research Team


1. Axie Fundamentals That Can’t Be Overlooked


2. L1 vs L2: Entering The Endgame

  • Full post: L1 vs L2: Entering The Endgame
  • Author: Can Gurel
  • TLDR: The newest form of modular chains, known as specialized data availability (DA) layers, is designed to act solely as a shared security layer for rollups. Given their scalability advantages, DA chains may become the end game of blockchain scaling. Celestia is the pioneering project on this front.

3. Ranking NFT Platforms: A Guide For Brands


4. Convex Continues Compounding CRV
  • Full post: Convex Continues Compounding CRV
  • Authors: Duncan Reucassel, and Jeremy Ong
  • TLDR: Convex has been able to capture meaningful value thus far from Curve, generating cumulative protocol revenue of over $11.3m in only 3 months. 5% of all yield earned is paid to CVX stakers which, when current figures are annualized, is roughly $18.4m a year. This equates to a fully diluted P/E of 38.5.

5. The Dawn of Decentralized Derivatives

  • Full post: The Dawn of Decentralized Derivatives
  • Author: Ashwath Balakrishnan
  • TLDR: The hunt for scalability continues across multiple different venues. Synthetix on Optimism, AlphaX & MCDEX on BSC, Vega & Injective on native app-chains, Serum on Solana, etc. In many cases, the derivatives exchange and scaling solution are being developed in tandem with one another. The race is on to deliver and gain market share.

6. Lido Dominates Liquid Staking


7. Uniswap v3 Charms The Market

  • Full post: Uniswap v3 Charms The Market
  • Author: Ashwath Balakrishnan
  • TLDR: Uniswap V3 implements “concentrated liquidity”, compressing the XYK price curve into a range that the LP chooses. It also replaces the static 0.30% trading fee that V2 has with three fee tiers instead: 0.05%, 0.30% and 1.00%. UniV3 brings with it greater flexibility but also greater complexity.

8. The Cosmos Ecosystem Has Arrived

  • Full post: The Cosmos Ecosystem Has Arrived
  • Authors: Alex Gedevani and Medio Demarco
  • TLDR: The Cosmos ecosystem is comprised of several Application-Specific Blockchains (“App-Chains”), which are all optimized for their given use case. In the past, these App-Chains were siloed and unable to communicate with one another. Now, with IBC seeing increased adoption, that is starting to change.

9. Art Blocks & The Hunt For A Metaverse Picasso

  • Full post: Art Blocks & The Hunt For A Metaverse Picasso
  • Author: Jayden Andrew
  • TLDR: Art Blocks sales have gone from virtually nil at the start of the summer to regularly clearing days with 10,000 ETH of volume in the final weeks of August. Art Blocks collections fit into 3 categories – Curated, Playground and Factory. Curated collections have consistently accounted for the majority of total sales volume and their pieces have set record high prices. Fidenza, Chromie Squiggle, and Ringers are the top curated collections by volume.

10. Flashing A Light On The Dark Forest

  • Full post: Flashing A Light On The Dark Forest
  • Authors: Joo KianGenevieve YeohPaul Burlage, and Medio Demarco
  • TLDR: Flashbots is a tool for both the efficient extraction of MEV and the minimization of its negative externalities. It brings together the various miners and bot operators, giving them a more formal way to cooperate and share in the MEV upside together. Bidding on MEV opportunities is done via a private channel, which reduces the negative externalities tied to gas bidding wars and failed transaction reverts.

11. Out From Chaos Comes THORSynths

  • Full post: Out From Chaos Comes THORSynths 
  • Authors: Can Gurel, and Yan Liberman, CFA, CAIA
  • TLDR: THORChain’s future is THORSynths; synthetic representations of non-Rune Assets pooled. The primary purpose of Synths is to be used for fast & cheap transactions significantly driving up Volume on the network. Furthermore, even though Synths contribute to pools (minted by depositing Rune to pool) they are designed to protect full-price exposure to underlying asset.

12. Appraising Digital Real Estate: The World of Lunacia