Golden State Warriors icon Stephen Curry was reportedly paid $35 million to be the ambassador of global cryptocurrency company FTX, which collapsed last year. Best-selling author Michael Lewis made the claim in his latest book, Going Infinite.
In an interview with 60 Minutes this week, where he was promoting his new book chronicling the rise and fall of FTX and its founder, Sam Bankman-Fried, Lewis revealed that FTX wanted to be the crypto company of choice for high-profile sports celebrities. One of the athletes was nine-time NBA All-Star Curry.
Here is what Lewis said during the interview:
“He turned to the sports world to bring his exchange both legitimacy and edge. He paid Tom Brady $55 million for 20 hours a year for three years. He paid Steph Curry $35 million for — same thing for three years.”
Check out the interview below, beginning at the 9:32 mark:
Bankman-Fried has admitted to committing massive fraud and is currently facing seven federal charges, which include wire fraud, conspiracy to commit commodities fraud, conspiracy to commit securities fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering.
FTX collapsed in early November 2022 following a report on potential leverage and solvency concerns involving its trading firm, Alameda Research. Its collapse rocked the crypto market, with investors losing billions at the time. The company tried to find bailout funds to save itself but with no success, forcing it to file for bankruptcy.
Prior to declaring bankruptcy, FTX was the fifth-largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world.
Stephen Curry became an ambassador for FTX in 2021. It is unclear, however, if the payment made to him to pitch for the company was in stock and crypto and how much was paid through standard U.S. currency.
According to published reports, Curry, like the other celebrity ambassadors of FTX, could face continued questioning for his involvement in promoting the “risky” company.
The four-time NBA champion has yet to comment on the Lewis revelation.
Stephen Curry is entering his 15th year in the 2023-24 NBA season. He is currently in a four-year, $215-million contract with the Warriors, according to numbers from Spotrac. For the upcoming season, he is expected to receive $52 million.
Lewis, meanwhile, is the author behind Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game (2003), The Blind Side: Evolution of A Game (2006), and The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine (2010), which were all made into acclaimed movies.