Tom Brady and Stephen Curry are among the pro athletes named as defendants in a class-action lawsuit filed Wednesday in federal court linked to bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX.
According to the Tampa Bay Times, the suit alleges the group of athletes appeared in advertisements for FTX that were full of “misrepresentations and omissions” and should be held liable for losses.
FTX filed for bankruptcy last week, and CNBC reported it could have more than 1 million creditors.
Other defendants named in the suit include basketball Hall of Fame member Shaquille O’Neal, Los Angeles Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani, Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence and Curry’s Golden State Warriors.
Brady’s ex-wife, Gisele Bundchen, also is named in the suit. The two each took majority stakes in the company in September and touted FTX in a series of commercials and encouraged peers to be part of the crypto craze.
“It’s an incredibly exciting time in the crypto-world and Sam and the revolutionary FTX team continue to open my eyes to the endless possibilities,” Brady said in 2021 of the company’s former CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried. “This particular opportunity showed us the importance of educating people about the power of crypto while simultaneously giving back to our communities and planet. We have the chance to create something really special here, and I can’t wait to see what we’re able to do together.”
The Times said the suit alleges that FTX was a Ponzi scheme and that Brady reportedly has deleted tweets that linked him to FTX and Bankman-Fried.
Plaintiffs in the class-action suit, filed in Miami’s Southern District of Florida, are seeking more than $5 million in damages, per the report.
Other sports were deeply impacted, Barron’s and Marketwatch reported.
With naming rights to the former American Airlines arena, home to the Miami Heat, and a $10 million sponsorship with the Golden State Warriors and Chase Center in San Francisco, FTX was a prominent name in the NBA. Multiple NBA2K teams were sponsored by FTX.
Miami-Dade County and the Heat announced Friday they were looking for a new naming rights partner for the arena.
Major League Baseball umpires wore the FTX logo sponsor patch on shirts and jackets during games.
The involved athletes already could have taken a significant financial loss. Ohtani took his complete stake as an ambassador in stock, company equity and cryptocurrency.
–Field Level Media