UFC Star Launches Meme Coin, Falls to Zero in Minutes Amid Insider Trading Claims

Having failed to put together a fight for nine months straight, undefeated UFC superstar Khamzat Chimaev has pivoted to crypto—and now shilling his own meme coin.

On Tuesday, the Russian-born wrestler asked fans which cryptocurrency he should invest in, inviting suggestions—and panic—from his followers. It’s the same playbook most celebs who are about to launch their own token have been running as of late. And sure enough, that’s exactly what Chimaev did.

The next day, he asked fans to buy the Khamzat-themed memecoin “SMASH”—named after his famous mantra to “smash everyone” put in front of him.

“There is one crypto coin about me—they call it SMASH,” Chimaev said on Twitter. “Let’s ‘smash’ together guys—let’s go.”

Unfortunately for early buyers, SMASH plummeted to zero on Friday almost as fast as Chimaev has finished most of his opponents. GeckoTerminal shows that the token is down 96% in the past 24 hours, having dramatically collapsed during the hours following the fighter’s tweet.

Familiar with such schemes, crypto veterans were quick to call out Chimaev in his replies for what appeared like a classic crypto pump-and-dump. Blockchain detective ZachXBT was quickly able to link the “insider wallets” that dumped most of the token’s supply directly to the fighter’s development team wallets, suggesting this was an orchestrated scam.

“Using timing analysis confirms 71% insider and dev team wallets [are] directly linked as they were funded by [the] same address on Ethereum,” ZachXBT explained.

The analyst cited various Solana addresses that received transfers from centralized crypto exchange Binance and token-swapping app SideShift shortly after a common Ethereum address had sent transfers of roughly equal amounts to the exchanges.

According to the sleuth’s analysis, one of those addresses was a SMASH insider wallet that later dispersed its 86.55 SOL (worth approximately $12,000) to 24 separate addresses, through which it then purchased 712 million SMASH—71.2% of the entire supply.

Chimaev has since deleted all tweets connected to crypto or his SMASH token.

The fighter was scheduled for a bout with number-three-ranked middleweight contender Robert Whittaker in Saudi Arabia on June 22, but was forced to pull out of the fight due to severe illness. The fight has yet to be rescheduled, but early SMASH buyers may be hoping for a Chimaev comeuppance at the hands of Bobby Knuckles sooner rather than later.

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