LeBron James at the premiere of “Shooting Stars.” (Photo by Michael Buckner/Variety via Getty Images)
James’ deals with Taco Bell, Nike, and his position as the largest shareholder in the Springhill Company, the television and movie production company, helped make James the first active player to be listed on Forbes Billionaire list. James has topped this list for the past ten years, and no athlete makes more in endorsements than King James.
Third on the list is Kevin Durant, who similar to Curry, has an even split of his income between his on-court and off-court earnings. Durant makes $46.4 million from playing basketball for the Phoenix Suns and earns $45 million off-court due in large part to his Boardroom media company, but has some other investments as well. Durant is the principal owner of the Brooklyn Aces, a team in Major League Pickleball as well as a lifetime deal with Nike and an appearance in the Call Of Duty video game series.
Among all professional sports players, the NBA has three of the top ten spots, which these three players occupy. However, the presence of Saudi Arabian money is felt on this list as both Saudi football money and the upstart LIV Golf, which essentially is subsidizing the PGA Tour, has brought their influence to bear on the list, notably through the number one player, the number six and number seven players on the list. Cristiano Ronaldo made it back to the pole position after his move from Manchester United to Saudi Arabian outfit Al-Nassr FC, which netted him a total of $136 million across his two clubs contracts.
Source: Black Enterprise