With his career in dire straits, controversial French tennis player Benoit Paire is mulling over a pivot to cryptocurrencies.
The 35-year-old athlete told RMC Sport that he would be able to make more money with crypto:
I would earn more with cryptocurrency.
On top of his recent first-round loss at the Italian Open, Paire was banned from representing France at the Tokyo Olympics after a bizarre spitting incident at the Argentina Open.
Prior to that, he was sent home from Rio in 2016 due to inappropriate behavior.
Despite ranking number 33 in global men's tennis, Paire has scored very few wins as of late. But merely participating in the tournament and pocketing appearance fees was enough for him:
I arrive, I take some money, and I go to the next tournament. I do my job.
After the pandemic emptied stadiums, those fees were slashed, which explains his pivot to crypto.
At the Monte Carlo Masters, Paire said that tennis did not make him happy anymore because of empty crowds:
Tennis doesn't make me happy anymore. To be here is an absolute sadness because it's usually the best tournament in the world.
Tennis meets crypto
With crypto permeating different types of sports, tennis has not been left behind.
Back in March, tennis star Serena Williams made an investment in Bitcoin rewards startup Lolli.
Meanwhile, Croatian tennis player Oleksandra Olinynykova made international headlines after selling her arm as an NFT, giving the expression "skin in the game" a whole new meaning.