In a Clubhouse announcement, Vivek Ranadivé said he would be open to paying his players and staff in cryptocurrency.
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April 6, 2021 2 min read
At least one NBA team is buying into the cryptocurrency craze and offering to pay its players and staff in Bitcoin.
Yesterday, Vivek Ranadivé, the chairman and CEO of the Sacramento Kings, disclosed in a Clubhouse room that he would be open to paying everyone in the organization in Bitcoin. Ranadivé made the announcement at the “Satoshi Roundtable,” which was co-hosted by Bitcoin advocates Tim Draper and Bruce Fenton.
Related: Tesla Now Accepts Bitcoin in the U.S.
“I’m going to announce in the next few days that I’m going to offer everyone in the Kings organization, they can get paid as much of their salary in Bitcoin as they want, including the players,” Ranadivé said, according to Clubhouse member Neil Jacobs.
BREAKING: Chairman of the Sacramento Kings:
“I’m going to announce in the next few days that I’m going to offer everyone in the Kings organization, they can get paid as much of their salary in #bitcoin as they want, including the players.” – @vivek@SacramentoKings
— Neil Jacobs (@NeilJacobs) April 5, 2021
In 2014, the Kings became the first basketball team to allow fans to buy merchandise in Bitcoin. At the time, Ranadivé told ESPN that the move marked the first of many toward a ticketless and cashless arena.
“When I sold the NBA on keeping the team in Sacramento, my pitch included using the sports franchise as a social network to push the technology envelope,” he told the sports network. “This is an example of that.”
Although the Kings are the first NBA team to give its players and staff the option to be paid in cryptocurrency, athletes in other leagues have already invested in it. Former Seattle Seahawks offensive lineman Russell Okung, for instance, reportedly put half of his 2020 salary in Bitcoin, fueling claims that he is now one of the highest-paid players in the NFL.
“Money is more than currency; it’s power,” Okung said in a statement obtained by NBC Sports in February. “The way money is handled from creation to dissemination is part of that power. Getting paid in Bitcoin is the first step of opting out of the corrupt, manipulated economy we all inhabit.”