Athletes, without a doubt, are among the highest paid individuals in the world. Many of them are not just paid by playing sport, but also for serving brand ambassadors. Additionally, they get bonuses every time they win a match. There’s always a main man in every team, and a superstar in every sport. Below is the list of athletes who are paid handsomely in their respective fields.
10. Conor McGregor – MMA
Estimated Total Income: $44 Million
This UFC star who hails from Kildare, Ireland only averages three fights per year but he is being paid so much for it. He has reached the peak of his career at 28 years old. Still single, he definitely has a lot of dough to spend for himself should he decides to retire today.
9. Clayton Kershaw – Baseball
Estimated Total Income: $64 Million
Playing America’s best-loved sports has brought quite a good fortune to Kershaw. He is definitely the richest pitcher in the league, after landing a whooping $215 million contract that pays him roughly $32 million each year. He has got a half a dozen endorsement deals to go with all of that too.
8. Usain Bolt – Track and Field
Estimated Total Income: $65 million
A native of Kingston, Jamaica, Usain Bolt is indeed the most successful track and field athlete of all time. He has always been the start of the Olympics, as he breaks records after records, including his own. He’s one of the few track and field athletes who have international endorsement deals. Bolt is 30, single, and winning big time in the field.
7. Floyd Mayweather – Boxing
Estimated Total Income: $88 million
Floyd is indeed, the king of the boxing ring at this point in time. Being paid millions of dollars per fight, win or lose, is something that not all struggling boxers enjoy. At 39, he has gone in and out of retirement to fight the much younger boxers to prove his supremacy inside the ring. This infamous American boxer proudly hails from Las Vegas, Nevada. His untarnished 49-0 record makes him at par with another boxing great, Rocky Marciano. His biggest fight ever was against Manny Pacquiao in May 2015.
6. Lewis Hamilton – Racing
Estimated Total Income: $92 Million
Being a daredevil on the race track gave Lewis Hamilton not just a lot of thrill, but loads and loads of money. This British racetrack superstar who now lives in Monaco drives for the Mercedes F1 team. Winning the F1 World Championship is nothing new to him, as he has bagged the title a total of three times.
5. Phil Mickelson – Golf
Total Estimated Income: $105.8 Million
Chasing the white ball across the course isn’t just a profitable pass time for Phil Mickelson; it has become the source of his multi-million income the past few years. This 46-year-old professional PGA athlete hails from Rancho Santa Fe, California. Yes, he has beaten Tiger Woods in fame and wealth by several millions. He’s a good businessman, too.
4. Cam Newton – Football
Estimated Total Income: $106.2 Million
American football has its own following, and in it, Cam Newton reigns supreme. This football MVP holds a 15-1 regular season record with a 45 touchdowns. This Charlotte native plays for his home state, the Carolina Panthers, where he is being paid an astounding $103.8 million. Newton is the top-paid NFL endorser of the sports brand, Under Armour.
3. Roger Federer – Tennis
Total Estimated Income: $135.6 million
Roger Federer is undoubtedly one of the best tennis players of all time. With Grand Slam appearances for 16 straight years, this athlete is indeed a phenomenon. He has competed in 65 championship matches; could have been more if it wasn’t for some back injuries. After playing tennis for 18 years, he has earned something close to $100 million. That’s not yet accounting the multi-million dollar deals he signed with blue-chip companies like Rolex, Mercedes-Benz, Nike, and Credit Suisse, among others.
2. LeBron James – Basketball
Estimated Total Income: $160.8 Million
Being paid so much for shooting the ball through the hoop is not something new. Michael Jordan was paid so much; and so is Lebron James. This 31-year-old NBA champion has earned around $23 million in salary and winnings, and double that amount in endorsements. A resident of Akron, Ohio, he has played for different teams. His most stellar performance, though, was with the Cleveland Cavaliers, where he carried the team to overcome a 3-1 deficit to win its first ever championship title.
1. Cristiano Ronaldo – Soccer
Estimated Total Income: $176 Million
This Portuguese soccer player who currently plays for Real Madrid is a three-time FIFA best player awardee. He has delivered more than 50 goals in six seasons for his club, which allowed them to pay him a handsome $50 million yearly salary. And he isn’t just popular among sports companies – he also endorses Monster headphones and Sacoor Brothers suits. He is very much endeared to his fans, as he has over 200 million social media followers to date. This 31-year-old athlete is definitely one of the most accomplished sportsmen in history.
These very successful men in sports are not very different from you and me. Yet their earnings so much doing what they do. Though they are paid differently and play different games, there’s one thing that is common across all of them – their passion that drives. So find whatever moves you, do it passionately, and find a way to make money out of it. You never know, but you may just be one of those very successful people who are making millions by simply doing whatever it is that they love to do.