Russell Okung, Carolina Panthers offensive linemen and a big time Bitcoin proponent has become the first pro-athlete to accept a portion of his salary in Bitcoin. Okung received half of his $13 million paycheck in bitcoin.
An NFL first: #Panthers OT Russell Okung will receive half of his $13M in salary in Bitcoin. As part of a partnership with @in_strike and thanks to creative payroll solutions from the #Panthers, @russellokung will fulfill the goal he set when he tweeted “Pay me in Bitcoin!”
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 29, 2020
The NFL athlete himself is a disbeliever of US dollar and often seen on Twitter shilling the top cryptocurrency and its advantages over traditional fiat.
If you think elections are rigged wait until you learn about the US dollar.
— russ (@RussellOkung) December 29, 2020
The crypto community lauded Okung’s decision to get paid in one of the highest returning assets of 2020. Many pointed out today’s bitcoin rally to a new ATH of $28,533 has already put the pro-athlete in profit.
“He’s hoping long-term that the price of bitcoin is going up,” Chris Matta, co-founder of Crescent Crypto Asset Management, told CNBC on Tuesday. “And this move is a show of his support and long-term bullishness for bitcoin growing even more from here.”
— Peter McCormack ???? (@PeterMcCormack) December 30, 2020
Strike, a Bitcoin and lightning payment network facilitated Okung’s Bitcoin salary where it converted $6.5 million of his paycheck into bitcoin. The bitcoin payment company also revealed that they are working towards bringing in more pro-athletes belonging to Brooklyn Nets and New York Yankees for Bitcoin payouts.
Bitcoin Paychecks Could Become More Common
Bitcoin use as a treasury asset is already popularized by institutions such as MicroStrategy, Pay Pal, and Nextech. The growing faith of institutions in Bitcoin as a hedging asset and a new store of value has also propelled it to the mainstream discussion as the future of money. Sports and Technology have always gone hand-in-hand as earlier several sports league bas partnered with crypto firms to launch their fan token to bring more fan participation to the game
Bitcoin salary payout might have taken place for the first time, however, the concept was never out of the discussion and it was only a matter of who would start the trend.
Okung’s Bitcoin salary may push many pro-athletes to follow on a similar path given Bitcoin is the growing choice of both retail and institution many even rooting for it to flip gold as its market breached half a trillion mark.