Russell Okung Becomes First NFL Player To Get Paid In Bitcoin

Carolina Panthers Training Camp

Carolina Panthers offensive lineman Russell Okung firmly believes in bitcoin. Last May, Okung tweeted he wanted to be paid in bitcoins. Well, that wish just came true just days before the new year. Half of Okung’s $13 million salary will be paid in bitcoins, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.

Okung confirmed the news, saying he had been “paid in Bitcoin.” The gesture apparently means a lot to Okung, as he pinned his original tweet about wanting to be paid that way. He also has the word bitcoin in his Twitter bio.

Okung is receiving half of his $13 million base salary for the 2020 season in bitcoin, according to a news release from Strike, a company that helps users convert traditional money to the cryptocurrency. The company claims that Okung, who is now with the Carolina Panthers, is the first player in league history to receive part of his annual paycheck in the form of a digital currency.

The tackle lobbied both the Panthers and his former team, the Los Angeles Chargers, to pay him in bitcoin before finding a solution. The Panthers ultimately paid the 32-year-old tackle in traditional currency but then passed it through Strike, which converted it to bitcoin.

Photo: Getty Images

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