After tweeting his demand to be paid in BTC back in May 2019, Russell Okung of the NFL’s Carolina Panthers becomes the first athlete from any major North-American sports league to be paid in Bitcoin (BTC) – a popular crypto-currency. The price of BTC has risen some 273% since Okung’s Tweet.

How Okung’s Salary BTC / FIAT currency Split Works

Okung’s $13 million annual salary is being split fifty-fifty between the bitcoin cryptocurrency and fiat (bank-based currency).

Technically – Okung is still being paid in regular US Dollars/Fiat, however crypto-company “Strike” receives a direct deposit from the Carolina Panthers, and then swaps dollars for Bitcoin via the Lightning network (a secondary system for sending bitcoin in a cheaper and faster manner than using the Bitcoin network itself), and after that the funds go into cold-storage for safety.

Thomas Nielsen

A sports-journalist & Las Vegas native, Thomas lives for professional basketball, NFL, college football and Ice-Hockey. When he is not watching sports (or analyzing sports data), he can usually be found reading a book in a secluded corner. Tom is also a contributor at &