There is no denying the fact that professional sports pay well. However, there are always a select few who make it to the top of the cream. Meanwhile, the list of the highest-paid athletes was published by the financial newspaper Forbes earlier. So let’s talk about the top 10 athletes who will be paid the most in 2022.
Giannis Antetokounmpo: $117.8 Million
The undisputed MVP of the NBA’s most recent era and the youngest player, Giannis Antetokounmpo, on our list is finally turning the hype into huge money. The largest deal in NBA history is presently held by The Greek Freak. Over the course of its five-year life, it will bring him in excess of $250 million. He now earns more money off the court than he did before, thanks to a series of sponsorship and investment partnerships. Nike, Google, Watchbox, NFTSTAR, and WhatsApp are a few of his sponsors.
Tom Brady: $122.2 Million
This year’s GOAT in the NFL was also its highest-paid player. Because of the wise decisions the 43-year-old quarterback has made to prepare for his impending retirement. TB12 launched his own apparel firm and production company, Religion of Sports, this year. He was a founding partner of the NFT platform Autograph, which secured over $100 million in investment last year. Additionally, he will make a fortune after retiring owing to a ten-year, $375 million contract he inked to join Fox Sports as its lead NFL pundit.
Canelo Alvarez: $131.2 Million
With a shocking loss to Dmitry Bivol, he could have just dropped his second professional fight. However, he is the But the Mexican, 31, and the highest-paid fighter in the world, will soon be in better shape after taking a quick peek at his bank account. Owing to the huge 10-fight contract, he already inked with DAZN.
The Mexican Middleweight is one of the few sportsmen in the world to earn that much each fight. Hennessy’s contracts and his own promotions business, which organizes bouts around the USA and Mexico, help him augment his income. Two fights on pay-per-view, which each brought in at least $35 million USD annually, accounted for a stunning 95% of his profits.
Roger Federer: $132.2 Million
Federer is doing well for himself, considering that he has only won nine tennis matches since February 2020 and that he is still recovering from another knee operation. Federer has built one of the most successful sponsorships and investment portfolios of the century thanks to his two decades of on-court domination. One of the most well-known Rolex endorsers, Federer continues to be the athletic crown jewel of Japanese retailer Uniqlo. He also made an investment in the rapidly expanding Swiss running business On.
Kevin Durant: $134.2 Million
The Brooklyn Nets’ Kevin Durant has consistently been on these rankings and commands enormous salaries everywhere he goes. In addition, he has one of the largest investment portfolios of any NBA player and is the second-highest compensated NBA athlete in terms of salary for Nike. The 33-year-old Brooklyn Nets star makes most of his money from business ventures and endorsement deals; he earned 28 million dollars only for sporting Nike sneakers.
Stephen Curry: $135.2 Million
Steph Curry’s triumphant comeback to the basketball court following a protracted string of ailments has been accompanied by a notable rise in the athlete earnings rankings. The Golden State Warrior owns the NBA’s highest-paying deal, bringing in more than $60 million annually. One of the largest Under Armour endorsers, he also has his own production firm like many of his NBA peers. The 34-year-old is endorsed by FTX and holds NFTs and equity stakes in three metaverses.
Neymar: $138.4 Million
Neymar is still generating money even if his on-field career is still in a bizarre state of flux. Like his teammate in position 1, his deal with PSG is among the most lucrative in sports. By moving from Nike to Puma as his new apparel sponsor, he also received a significant cash boost. However, according to Forbes, he also makes an additional $500,000 every week on average from incentives and signing-on fees. Additionally, he makes $20 million through sponsorships for brands like Puma, Red Bull, Netflix, and others.
Cristiano Ronaldo: $167.6 Million
Given Ronaldo’s enormous Manchester United salary and several additional incentives, it comes as absolutely no surprise to see his name listed right there. Given that he joined Manchester United earlier this year, Ronaldo has a sizable deal with the club. Nonetheless, as possibly the sportsperson with the most marketability. Along with his stakes in Tatel eateries and ZujuGP, he also earns millions from collaborations with Nike, Herbalife, and Clear shampoo.
LeBron James: $176.7 Million
James’ basketball accomplishments speak for themselves, and the LA Lakers star is still earning enormous salaries to become the highest paid in the NBA. However, he earned two-thirds of his 2022 from other sources, including a role in Space Jam. He receives income through his talk program, The Shop, from the sale of his ownership in a production firm and from a number of endorsement deals, including one with Crypto.com. James’ production firm, Springhill, is the main source of his revenue off the court. LeBron earned $176 million in 2022 as a result of all these endeavors.
Lionel Messi: $189.5 Million
Messi, 34, is at the top of the list and earns more than 1.2 million USD every WEEK only for playing for PSG. Conor McGregor has already prevented the debatable GOAT from gaining the top place. However, he has retaken the title of the highest-paid athlete in the world. Messi has a huge deal with French mega club PSG that pays him almost $90 million annually. His income continues to flow in thanks to a lifetime contract with Adidas, and additional endorsement deals with Budweiser, Pepsi, and Socios.