The cryptocurrency community has been abuzz with speculation and conspiracy theories surrounding the launch of the BALD memecoin and its subsequent dramatic price crash. Some have suggested that FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) may be secretly behind the controversial token, but these claims have been met with skepticism and debunked by those close to him.
The BALD memecoin, named in a humorous reference to Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong, experienced an astonishing 289,000% gain within its first 24 hours of trading. However, after the token’s anonymous developer removed a large portion of the liquidity, the price of BALD plummeted more than 85%, leading to accusations of a rug pull.
Blockchain sleuths began investigating the developer’s on-chain activity and discovered a link to SBF, as the Ethereum wallet address responsible for deploying BALD had received funding from wallets associated with FTX and Alameda Research. This connection sparked conspiracy theories suggesting that SBF was attempting to recover losses or manipulate the market.
One anonymous commentator, Downsin, implied that SBF may be involved in the scheme to make amends before a potential prison sentence. However, it’s important to note that SBF is currently under house arrest at his parent’s home in California, awaiting trial in October.
Further supporting the conspiracy were findings by Blockworks data editor Andrew Thurman, who noted that the same wallet address had made transfers to blacklisted USDT addresses and had “serious Alameda connections.”
Prominent pseudonymous trader Hsaka went as far as suggesting that the timing of BALD’s launch and crash may have been orchestrated to provide ammunition for SEC Chair Gary Gensler to prosecute FTX’s former rival, Coinbase.
Another anonymous commentator, “Hype,” pointed out eerie similarities between the developer and SBF, including sentence structure in social media posts. Additionally, the wallet associated with the developer had been involved in the DeFi platform Sushi Swap from its early days.
However, many crypto pundits and influencers have dismissed the conspiracy theory. They argue that it is unlikely for SBF to be involved in such a scheme, given his strict bail conditions, which include limited internet usage.
Crypto influencer Tiffany Fong, who has interacted with SBF after his arrest, clarified that he uses a “flip phone without internet connection.” Visitors to his residence are thoroughly searched, and electronic devices are not allowed.
Pseudonymous trader HORSE also encouraged followers to dismiss the conspiracy theory, suggesting that people take off their “tinfoil hats.”
As the BALD memecoin saga continues to unfold, it serves as a reminder of the speculative and unpredictable nature of the cryptocurrency market, where rumors and conspiracy theories can quickly gain traction. However, without concrete evidence, it is essential to exercise caution and avoid jumping to conclusions.