What Sports Athletes Make the Most Money?

In today’s world, many young people aspire to be professional athletes. But what sport pays the most? Here’s a look at the top 5.

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In the NBA, the average player salary is $7.7 million per year. The salary cap for the NBA is $102 million, which means that the average NBA team has 13 players. The highest-paid player in the NBA is LeBron James, who makes $33.3 million per year.

LeBron James

LeBron James is an American professional basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He is widely considered to be one of the greatest basketball players in NBA history, and has frequently been compared to Michael Jordan in debates over the greatest basketball player of all time. LeBron has won four NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP) Awards, four NBA Finals MVP Awards, three NBA championships, and two Olympic gold medals. LeBron is also the only player in NBA history to achieve a triple double in the NBA Finals. In 2018, he became the first former high school player to be drafted as the first overall pick in an NBA draft. He is also one of only six players to achieve at least 30,000 career points and 8,000 assists.

LeBron’s annual salary is $33 million, but he also has numerous endorsement deals that bring in additional income. In 2018, Forbes estimated that James’ total earnings were $85 million. This made him the highest-paid athlete in the world at that time, and he has held that title for several years since then.

Kevin Durant

As of 2019, Kevin Durant is one of the most offensively talented basketball players in the NBA today. He is a lights-out shooter with an incredible ability to put the ball in the hoop. In addition to his shooting, Durant is also an excellent passer and can play multiple positions on the court. Because of his unique skillset, Durant commands a high salary. In fact, as of 2019, he is the highest-paid player in the NBA, earning over $30 million annually.

Stephen Curry

Stephen Curry, shooting guard for the Golden State Warriors, is one of the NBA’s highest-paid players. During the 2017-2018 season, Curry made $34.68 million in salary and endorsements. His total pay for the year was $76 million when factoring in his salary and bonuses from his contract with the Warriors. In 2016, Forbes ranked Curry as the 13th highest-paid athlete in the world. He earned an estimated $31 million from salary and endorsements that year.


The average NFL player salary is $2.1 million per year, as of 2019. The median salary is $860,000. How much do NFL players make? The average player’s salary has increased nearly ten-fold since the 1960s. The top NFL earners made an average of $24.8 million in 2017. The median salary for an NFL player was $860,000 in 2019.

Tom Brady

NFL quarterback Tom Brady is one of the highest-paid athletes in the world, due to his large contract with the New England Patriots and his numerous endorsement deals. As of 2019, Brady’s annual salary is $15 million, and he has earned approximately $235 million from his NFL career. In addition to his salary, Brady also receives $8 million per year from endorsements, for a total annual income of $23 million.

Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers is an American football quarterback for the Green Bay Packers of the National Football League (NFL). Rodgers was drafted by the Packers in the first round of the 2005 NFL Draft. He played college football at California, where he set several career passing records, including most touchdown passes in a single game.

Rodgers has been named to nine Pro Bowls, was the Associated Press (AP) Athlete of the Year in 2011, and was the AP NFL Most Valuable Player (MVP) twice, winning back-to-back awards in 2011 and 2012. He led the Packers to a Super Bowl XLV victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2011 as well as Super Bowl XLVIII over the Seattle Seahawks two years later. Rodgers is also one of only two quarterbacks to throw for over 4,000 yards in each of his first seven seasons (Drew Brees is the other).

Russell Wilson

Russell Wilson is an American football quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and was drafted by the Seahawks in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft. In addition to his football career, Wilson has also pursued a career in Major League Baseball (MLB).


The Major League Baseball players’ average salary is $4.47 million annually as of 2019.The average salary has gone up every year since 2001. The highest-paid player in Major League Baseball is Mike Trout, who makes $37.67 million dollars per year playing for the Los Angeles Angels.

Mike Trout

Mike Trout, who plays for the Los Angeles Angels, is the highest-paid player in baseball. He signed a contract extension in March 2019 that will pay him an average of $36 million per year from 2020 to 2030. Trout’s annual salary will peak at $37.7 million in 2024 and 2025. He will be paid $32 million in 2026 and 2027, and his salary will decrease to $33 million in 2028 and 2029 before reaching its nadir of $32 million in 2030.

Clayton Kershaw

Kershaw’s record-setting $93 million, six-year contract creates the richest total package ever for a pitcher
Left-handed pitcher Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers agreed to a new contract on Jan. 15, 2014, that made him the highest-paid player in MLB history. The new deal was for $215 million over seven years, which averages out to $30.7 million per season. In addition, Kershaw can opt out of the contract after five seasons and become a free agent again.

Miguel Cabrera

Miguel Cabrera is a Venezuelan professional baseball player who plays first base for the Detroit Tigers of Major League Baseball (MLB). He is a two-time American League (AL) Most Valuable Player (MVP) and four-time AL batting champion. He has played at first and third base for most of his major league career, but primarily played left and right field before 2006. Cabrera was signed by the Florida Marlins as an amateur free agent in 1999, and came up through their farm system, making his major league debut in 2003.


professional hockey league in North America, is currently the highest paying sport to play in. The average salary for an NHL player is $2.7 million per year. This is followed by the NBA, which has an average player salary of $7.4 million.

Sidney Crosby

Sidney Crosby is a Canadian professional ice hockey player who serves as captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins of the National Hockey League (NHL). Crosby was selected first overall by the Penguins in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft and is widely regarded as one of the greatest hockey players of all time. He has won numerous awards and accolades, including the Stanley Cup twice, the Conn Smythe Trophy twice, the Hart Memorial Trophy, and the Art Ross Trophy. A two-time Olympic gold medalist with Team Canada, Crosby has also been referred to as “Sid the Kid”, “The Next One”, and “Captain Canada”.

Alex Ovechkin

In 2018, Russian-born Alex Ovechkin was the highest-paid professional ice hockey player in the world, earning an annual salary of $10 million from the Washington Capitals, plus an additional $3 million in endorsements. Ovechkin has been one of the most consistent scorers in the NHL over the past decade, and his career earnings to date are estimated at $60 million.

Jonathan Toews

Jonathan Toews is a professional ice hockey player from Canada who currently serves as the captain of the Chicago Blackhawks of the National Hockey League (NHL). He was selected by the Blackhawks with the third overall pick in the 2006 NHL Entry Draft. Toews has won three Stanley Cup championships with the Blackhawks and is a two-time Olympic gold medal winner with Team Canada. In 2013, he was named the Conn Smythe Trophy winner as the most valuable player during the Stanley Cup playoffs.

During his NHL career, Toews has been awarded several prestigious honors and accolades. He has been named to six All-Star teams and has won three Frank J. Selke Trophies as the league’s best defensive forward. Toews is also a two-time recipient of the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy, which is awarded to the player who best exemplifies sportsmanship and dedication to hockey. In 2017, he was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

At present, Jonathan Toews is one of the highest-paid athletes in the NHL, earning an annual salary of $13 million dollars. His total career earnings are reported to be in excess of $100 million dollars.

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