With cryptocurrency prices dropping in recent weeks, there has been increased scrutiny on the many professional athletes who have bragged about getting paid in cryptocurrency, and how much money these athletes have lost. Most notably, a viral story claimed that the Jaguar midfielder Trevor Lawrence He lost $15 million after receiving his $24 million signing bonus last year in cryptocurrency that is now worth just $9 million.
One problem with that story: It’s not true.
Lawrence explained this on Twitter today, explaining that when he said last year that he received a cryptocurrency signing bonus, he was referring to the signing bonus he received for his endorsement deal with crypto exchange FTX. He wasn’t referring to his $24 million signing bonus as the first overall pick in last year’s NFL draft.
“Have you all mixed up the FTX_Official signing bonus with one NFL?” Lawrence Wrote.
It should have been clear from the start that the story was fake. For starters, NFL players cannot get paid with cryptocurrency. They get paid in US dollars. What they choose to do with these dollars is their own business, and some players may invest heavily in cryptocurrencies, just like other players who invest in stocks or real estate.
And income tax is withheld from players’ paychecks, so Lawrence never had $24 million to lose in the first place. After taxes, Lawrence’s signing bonus was around $15 million, so if he had put the entire signing bonus into Bitcoin, the $15 million wouldn’t come out unless the Bitcoin price hit zero. And while bitcoin is down more than 60 percent from its all-time high in November, it’s still close to zero.
But, once again, Lawrence did not put his full signature bonus in Bitcoin. Lawrence is making money from cryptocurrency through his endorsement deal with a cryptocurrency exchange, and if he invests this money in cryptocurrency, he will lose a lot of money since his endorsement deal started. But he did not lose 15 million dollars.