NBA Faces Lawsuit Over Ties to Defunct Crypto Lender Voyager Digital

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is embroiled in a legal battle from its former marketing partnership with Voyager Digital, a now-defunct crypto lender. A group of aggrieved Voyager investors filed a class-action lawsuit on February 6, 2024, accusing the NBA of “gross negligence” for promoting the platform.

The lawsuit alleges that the NBA’s association with Voyager, including a promotional deal with the Dallas Mavericks, implicitly endorsed the crypto lender and misled investors. Plaintiffs claim this marketing contributed to their losses exceeding $4.2 billion during Voyager’s collapse in 2022.

Central to the lawsuit is the notion that the NBA, due to its reach and influence, served as a “gatekeeper” for financial products promoted within its ecosystem. The plaintiffs argue that this responsibility necessitates due diligence regarding any associated brands, particularly those in high-risk domains like cryptocurrency.

Furthermore, the lawsuit contends that the NBA, facing financial strains due to COVID-19, prioritized lucrative endorsement deals with crypto exchanges like Voyager despite inherent risks. According to the plaintiffs, this decision constitutes a deliberate embrace of potential dangers for financial gain.

While the lawsuit seeks class-action status, representing potentially numerous affected investors, it remains in its early stages. The defendants, including the NBA and specific teams involved in marketing partnerships, have yet to officially respond to the allegations.

Should the lawsuit proceed, the court will assess the validity of the claims and determine whether the NBA’s promotional activities with Voyager amounted to actionable negligence. This case can potentially set significant precedents regarding the liability of entities like professional sports leagues when endorsing potentially risky ventures like cryptocurrency exchanges.

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