Steph Curry's Controversial Moon Landing Comment Led To A $58K Donation To Help Students

While there are still some holdouts, the vast majority of people can agree that on July 20, 1969, a human being did in fact land on the moon. Some still try to argue that the footage that was broadcast around the world didn't come from the lunar surface, but instead from a soundstage with venerable director Stanley Kubrick — fresh off of his sci-fi epic "2001: A Space Odyssey" — sitting behind the camera (via Rolling Stone).

It's still a fringe opinion, and proponents of the conspiracy theory are often met with swift resistance from those involved in the program, especially those who were on the moon that day in 1969. Seriously: Buzz Aldrin, one of the astronauts involved, even punched a conspiracy theorist who confronted him back in 2002, per the Orlando Sentinel. That still doesn't mean that moon-landing deniers are going anywhere. In fact, they're easier to find in a lot of ways, thanks to the internet. However, it still surprised fans and space enthusiasts when one of the NBA's biggest names insinuated that he didn't think the moon landing ever actually happened.

Steph Curry said that he didn't believe the moon landing was real

In 2018, Golden State Warriors star point guard Steph Curry appeared on the podcast "Winging It" with hosts and former NBA players Vince Carter and Kent Bazemore in December 2018. In the episode — which also featured NBA player Andre Igoudala — Curry posed the question of whether or not man has ever set foot on the moon. When several others on the show said they didn't think so, Curry was heard saying, "They're gonna come get us — I don't think so, either" (via Space).

Almost immediately after the podcast was posted, NASA offered to show the three-time NBA champion some rock samples from the space agency's six missions to the lunar surface between 1969 and 1972, per The New York Times. "We'd love for Mr. Curry to tour the lunar lab at our Johnson Space Center in Houston, perhaps the next time the Warriors are in town to play the Rockets," NASA spokesman Allard Beutel said at the time.

Curry wasn't the first high-profile NBA player to get tangled in a fringe conspiracy theory. Kyrie Irving, a point guard for the Brooklyn Nets, has floated flat-Earth conspiracy theories on multiple occasions.

Curry later said his statement was a joke and even made something great of the situation

After the podcast in which Curry seemingly questioned the veracity of the moon landing went viral, former NASA astronaut Scott Kelly reached out to him on Twitter, offering to discuss the topic. According to Space, Curry and Kelly got together for a broadcast on Instagram live where Curry admitted that he had been joking on the podcast, and his joke was unfortunately taken seriously.

"It was a very unfortunate situation for me, because it was a comment that was made in jest and not to be taken seriously," Curry said. "But the headlines and the reaction kind of took on a life of its own."

Fortunately, Curry found a way to turn the entire situation into something good. According to CBS Sports, Curry threw on a pair of custom-made, moon-landing-themed sneakers for a game against the Houston Rockets. Curry signed the game-worn kicks and they were auctioned off, with the winning bid coming in at $58,000. The money generated by the auction was donated to fund STEM education initiatives in San Francisco Bay area schools.