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Highest-paid athletes in the world

Elona Neal on

Published in Slideshow World

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Highest-paid athletes in the world

It’s no secret that popular athletes reel in some pretty hefty paydays for their capacity to entertain, skills, and endorsement deals. The fact is: Millions of people tune in to see these athletes succeed every single day. Often described as prominent first influencers, athletes bring in significant revenue to some of the biggest brand names in the world. Businesses invest in athletes because it is common knowledge that these celebrities bring in millions of supporters who stand by their choices in apparel, cars, services, and even alcoholic beverages.

Furthermore, if becoming a major athlete was easy, millions of people would head down that path. But let’s face it, most people will never have the opportunity to experience the immense pressure that living in the public eye brings to the lives of professional athletes. Their every move is scrutinized, and their livelihood depends on their body’s loyalty to stay fit, active, and healthy. Some of the world’s highest-paid athletes have dedicated their lives to the sport since their early teens, and they train day and night to be the best in their field.

Despite the massive hit to the sports industry due to the coronavirus pandemic of 2020, it wasn’t big enough to stop the players from playing the games fans love to see. Like most of the world, they’ve found a way to social distance, take health precautions, and move the games to a virtual setting. And thus, salaries continue to be paid.

To find the highest-paid athletes globally, Stacker consulted Forbes’ Highest Paid Athletes Ranking from May 2020. Forbes calculates total earnings as earnings from June 1, 2019, to June 1, 2020. Methodologies for specific sports can be found on the Forbes website.

And yes, the gender pay gap across all sports still exists. Last year there was only one woman on this list; this year there are two. Both play tennis, the sport that offers the narrowest gap. According to Salary.com, since 2007, the four Grand Slams have paid equal prize money to the male and female winners. Other than these tournaments, however, The New York Times calculates that female tennis players make 80 cents to every dollar their male counterparts make, which pretty much coincides with the current U.S. gender pay gap.

Find your favorite athlete on the list of worldwide notables to see just how much they’re rolling in dough.

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Visit thestacker.com for similar lists and stories.

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#61. Joel Embiid (tie)

- Total earnings: $26.7 million - Endorsement earnings: $6 million (#35 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $20.7 million (#49 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

With only one year of college basketball experience as a Kansas Jayhawk, Joel Embiid was drafted by the Philadelphia 76ers in 2014 as a center and signed a five-year contract extension with the team in 2017. Aside from this, he has made almost $6.8 million from his endorsement deals with companies such as Amazon, Electronics Arts Inc., and Under Armour. According to Forbes, Embiid has made considerable contributions to the coronavirus relief effort.

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#60. Antoine Griezmann (tie)

- Total earnings: $26.7 million - Endorsement earnings: $5.5 million (#38 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $21.2 million (#46 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

With sponsors like Puma and Huawei, it’s no wonder Antoine Griezmann made it to the list of highest-paid athletes. He plays forward for two teams—Barcelona and the French national team. In 2018, he helped the French team take home the World Cup trophy, contributing to scoring more than half of the 14 game goals.

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#59. Arik Armstead

- Total earnings: $26.8 million - Endorsement earnings: $0.3 million (#60 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $26.5 million (#29 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

Originally signing with the San Francisco 49ers in 2015 as a first-round draft pick, Arik Armstead, a defensive end, signed a five-year contract extension in March, with a $17.5 million bonus, according to Forbes. Toyota Motor and Nike are two of Armstead’s major sponsors. His philanthropic efforts lean toward not only northern California coronavirus relief efforts, but also his educational equality foundation.

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#58. Clayton Kershaw (tie)

- Total earnings: $27.3 million - Endorsement earnings: $0.8 million (#56 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $26.5 million (#29 among all athletes) - Sport: Baseball

Clayton Kershaw signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2008, and this trailblazer on the baseball field received one of the highest professional baseball contract extensions for a pitcher in 2013 at $215 million. He’s a celebrity endorser for well-known brands, which currently include Topps, Wilson Sporting Goods, and Skechers. Kershaw also is involved in numerous humanitarian efforts, both national and international.

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#58. Zion Williamson (tie)

- Total earnings: $27.3 million - Endorsement earnings: $20 million (#19 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $7.3 million (#54 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Breaking college basketball records at Duke University in 2019 during his freshman year, Zion Williamson continued his record-breaking ways in a $44 million four-year deal with the New Orleans Pelicans in his rookie year. The 20-year-old power forward signed on with Gatorade, and has also partnered with Nike’s Jordan Brand, Mountain Dew, Panini Prizm basketball cards and 2K Sports. According to Fanatics, where his merchandise is sold, he has had some of the highest sales in the NBA.

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#56. Oscar

- Total earnings: $27.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $1.7 million (#54 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $25.8 million (#32 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

Oscar dos Santos Emboaba Júnior, a Brazilian midfielder known as Oscar, made his way to the Chinese Super League in 2017 after scoring two Premier League wins. Oscar had played in the league for more than a decade and, throughout that time, scored one of his biggest sponsorships from Adidas. Oscar will be unable to negotiate his current salary in the CSL because of its 2020 salary restrictions on foreign players.

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#52. Jimmy Butler (tie)

- Total earnings: $27.6 million - Endorsement earnings: $3 million (#44 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $24.6 million (#36 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Jimmy Butler was a Chicago Bulls’ first round draft pick in 2011 and became a Philadelphia 76er in a $142 million sign-and-trade agreement in 2019. His $3 million earnings from endorsements all stem from brand names like Beats by Dre, Aquahydrate, and currently Anheuser-Busch InBev. After winning five NBA All-Star titles, 2020 is not the first year Butler has been named one of the best athletes of his time. Through charitable donations, he’s also used some of his earnings to help end poverty for children.

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#52. Gordon Hayward (tie)

- Total earnings: $27.6 million - Endorsement earnings: $3 million (#44 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $24.6 million (#36 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Boston Celtic Gordon Hayward has incredible achievements on the court, and it’s paid off for him big time. He received an endorsement deal with HyperX, a video game equipment company, and set aside millions for his personal investments. He is known for enjoying the fruits of his labor with numerous luxury vehicles and real estate investments.

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#52. Jordan Spieth (tie)

- Total earnings: $27.6 million - Endorsement earnings: $26 million (#16 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $1.6 million (#59 among all athletes) - Sport: Golf

Jordan Spieth’s list of accomplishments is one for the history books with the number of championship titles he’s accumulated, spending 24 weeks at #1 in the Official World Golf Ranking, and more. The perks of this: becoming one of the highest-paid golfers of his generation for endorsing brands like Rolex, AT&T, Titleist, and Under Armour—and being only one of four golfers, including Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods, to appear on a box of Wheaties.

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#52. Kemba Walker (tie)

- Total earnings: $27.6 million - Endorsement earnings: $3 million (#44 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $24.6 million (#36 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Four-time All-Star Kemba Walker started his career with the Charlotte Hornets in 2011, and currently is a Boston Celtic. He began endorsing Under Armour early on, but in 2015 he switched to Nike’s Jordan Brand.

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#50. Kyle Lowry (tie)

- Total earnings: $28.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $1.5 million (#55 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $27 million (#26 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Being a key component to the Toronto Raptors during their first NBA championship in 2019, point guard Kyle Lowry has made a name for himself in the league. Since his time on the Raptors, he’s won six All-Star titles and a gold medal in the 2016 Olympics. In 2013, Lowry started the Lowry Love Foundation to help those less fortunate in Toronto and Philadelphia.

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#50. Paul Pogba (tie)

- Total earnings: $28.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $5.5 million (#38 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $23 million (#43 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

With an $85 million net worth and a striking winning streak, Paul Pogba commands the field. His endorsement deal with Adidas alone grants him millions of dollars, and he gives back to charitable foundations like Save the Children and his Pogda foundation, which is focused on attaining clean water for Africa.

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#49. Mesut zil

- Total earnings: $28.7 million - Endorsement earnings: $5.5 million (#38 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $23.2 million (#41 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

Mesut Özil is a respected name both on and off the soccer field. In 2018, after leaving Germany’s national team because of allegations of racism by the federation president, he signed a contract to play until 2021 for Premier League club Arsenal. During his career, he has had endorsements from Adidas; founded M10 eSports, an esports team; and has donated sizable amounts of his earnings toward various international humanitarian efforts.

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#48. Daniel Ricciardo

- Total earnings: $29 million - Endorsement earnings: $2 million (#51 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $27 million (#26 among all athletes) - Sport: Auto racing

An intense competitor representing Australia for Renault, Daniel Ricciardo is a seven-time championship winner with numerous career collaborations. He is sponsored by Puma, Amazon, and others. Next year, he’ll begin a multiyear contract with McLaren. Ricciardo works with the Red Bull-supported Wings for Life foundation, and has given undisclosed amounts to the Australian Red Cross and Wires wildlife rescue in the aftermath of the Australian bushfires earlier in the year.

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#47. Matt Ryan

- Total earnings: $29.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $5.5 million (#38 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $24 million (#39 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

Atlanta Falcons MVP quarterback Matt Ryan signed a five-year $150 million contract in 2018. Two years earlier, his game-winning performances led the Falcons to a second Super Bowl. His endorsements include Nike, Gatorade, Dove, Mercedes-Benz, and six other partners.

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#46. Andres Iniesta

- Total earnings: $29.6 million - Endorsement earnings: $3 million (#44 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $26.6 million (#28 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

Andres Iniesta's endorsement from Nike spanned almost 20 years before he moved on to Asics, a Japanese footwear company. Iniesta also established himself as a businessman throughout his career, opening up a winery in 2010. Iniesta retired from soccer in 2018.

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#45. Aaron Rodgers

- Total earnings: $30.1 million - Endorsement earnings: $9 million (#32 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $21.1 million (#47 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

It’s safe to say that the NFL’s eight-time Pro Bowler and two-time MVP Aaron Rodgers made a few smart chess moves throughout his career. With skillful athletic talent; endorsements from Adidas, Bose and State Farm Mutual Auto Insurance; and a minority ownership stake in the Milwaukee Bucks basketball team, he’ll go down in sports history as one of the most successful quarterbacks of his time. Rodgers’ current contract with the Green Bay Packers is locked in until 2023.

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#44. Anthony Davis

- Total earnings: $30.4 million - Endorsement earnings: $10 million (#31 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $20.4 million (#50 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

This Chicago native began his incentives the moment he was drafted by the New Orleans Pelicans in 2012. He was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers in 2019. Davis has seven All-Star titles and multiple endorsement deals. His partnership with Ruffles is said to give him creative freedom in coming up with new concepts for the brand, and his partnership with Nike is just the icing on the cake.

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#43. Kawhi Leonard

- Total earnings: $30.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $5.5 million (#38 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $25 million (#33 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

One of small forward Kawhi Leonard’s biggest endorsements has been with the shoe company New Balance. In addition, when he was signed onto a five-year contract with the San Antonio Spurs in 2015, he reportedly got a $14 million increase in salary, charting him with some of the highest-paid basketball players this year. Leonard’s currently a free agent with the Los Angeles Clippers.

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#42. John Wall

- Total earnings: $31.2 million - Endorsement earnings: $2.5 million (#49 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $28.7 million (#24 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Shoe company endorsements seemed to be right up this player’s alley. John Wall had partnered with some of the most well-known shoe brands, such as Reebok and Adidas, in his career, but now enjoys a partnership with New Era. He won five NBA All-Star titles throughout his career and is predicted to be one of the highest-paid Washington Wizards players this year.

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#41. Blake Griffin

- Total earnings: $31.9 million - Endorsement earnings: $6 million (#35 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $25.9 million (#31 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Detroit Piston Blake Griffin is well known for receiving incentives from a wide variety of endorsements throughout his career. His current sponsors include Nike, Panini, and Red Bull, and he has also partnered with Kia, Subway, AT&T, and more. Though he missed the end of the 2020 season due to injury, Griffin will still easily make about $30 million this year. The Pistons play at Little Caesars Arena, and during the coronavirus, Griffin is contributing $100,000 to its staff.

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#40. Kei Nishikori

- Total earnings: $32.1 million - Endorsement earnings: $31 million (#12 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $1.1 million (#60 among all athletes) - Sport: Tennis

Although Kei Nishikori wasn’t able to play in the 2020 Olympic Games due to its postponement because of the pandemic, he did capture a bronze Olympic medal in tennis—a first for a Japanese player in 96 years—in the 2016 Rio Olympics. He continues to have some of the most well-known endorsements in Olympic partnerships, like Asahi, NTT, Japan Airlines, Lixil, Procter & Gamble, and Nissan. Major companies offer his fans special edition versions of cars, food, planes and beverages.

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#39. Michael Thomas

- Total earnings: $32.4 million - Endorsement earnings: $0.8 million (#56 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $31.6 million (#17 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

Setting records on the field as a wide receiver for the New Orleans Saints since he joined the team in 2016, Michael Thomas has engrossed himself in “Can’t Guard Mike,” his own line of shirts and hoodies. Endorsed by Nike and PepsiCo, his accomplishments include being awarded AP Offensive Player of the Year, the first receiver since Jerry Rice to receive the honor since 1993.

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#38. Paul George

- Total earnings: $32.8 million - Endorsement earnings: $8 million (#33 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $24.8 million (#34 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

This 2016 Olympic gold medal winner received a $137 million contract with the Oklahoma City Thunders before playing for the Los Angeles Clippers. In 2017, Paul George released the PG1, his shoe line with Nike, and endorsed New Era, Foot Locker, and more. Furthermore, he currently has more than 62,000 followers on YouTube, a company he also endorses.

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#37. Grady Jarrett

- Total earnings: $33.1 million - Endorsement earnings: $0.1 million (#61 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $33 million (#14 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

NFL defensive tackle Grady Jarrett’s $68 million contract with the Atlanta Falcons is more than enough to be considered an established football player. He also received an $18 million bonus when signing. He has an endorsement partnership with Nationwide Mutual Insurance, and has given back to his community during the 2020 coronavirus pandemic.

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#36. Kylian Mbapp

- Total earnings: $33.8 million - Endorsement earnings: $13 million (#26 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $20.8 million (#48 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

With an estimated net worth of $25 million, Kylian Mbappé’s endorsement deals are just the cherry on top of his accomplishments. The 20-year-old is currently partnering with Nike, Hublot and Electronic Arts Inc. His talents and capabilities have won him multiple titles in the French professional league.

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#35. Chris Paul

- Total earnings: $35 million - Endorsement earnings: $6 million (#35 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $29 million (#20 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Chris Paul has garnered endorsements with some of the best-known brands, like Nike, State Farm Mutual Auto Insurance, Spaulding, Panini, and Beyond Meat, in his more than 15-year career with the NBA as a point guard. He was the New Orleans Hornets’ fourth-round draft selection in 2005, and now is playing with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Throughout the years he’s experienced numerous honors, including being named to 10 All-Star teams and four All-NBA first teams, and won two Olympic gold medals with Team USA.

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#34. Mohamed Salah

- Total earnings: $35.1 million - Endorsement earnings: $12 million (#27 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $23.1 million (#42 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

Mohamed Salah reportedly earns about $117,000 per week. He was the top goal-scorer for his Liverpool team at both the Premier League and Champions League for two seasons. Due to his accomplishments, he became the face of Adidas for one of its sportswear lines and commercials. He also has partnerships with DHL International, Electronic Arts Inc., ExxonMobil and Vodafone-USD.

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#33. Serena Williams

- Total earnings: $36 million - Endorsement earnings: $32 million (#9 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $4 million (#56 among all athletes) - Sport: Tennis

In 2019, Serena Williams was the only woman on Forbes’ list of highest-paid athletes. This 23-time Grand Slam champion, who started competing at 14, is a legend in the tennis industry, and a savvy businesswoman as well. Today, her sponsors include Audemars Piguet, Beats Electronics, Bumble, Gatorade, JPMorgan Chase, Nike, Upper Deck, and Wilson Sporting Goods. She also invests in startups and minority women’s companies, and has an accumulated portfolio worth $10 million. Added to her S by Serena clothing line, she owns stakes in the Miami Dolphins and the UFC.

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#32. Sebastian Vettel

- Total earnings: $36.3 million - Endorsement earnings: $0.3 million (#59 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $36 million (#11 among all athletes) - Sport: Auto racing

Even though Sebastian Vettel has not won a major championship title since 2015, the Formula One driver’s four World Championships secured his deal with Ferrari—at $40 million per year. In recent years, he’s avoided endorsements. The coronavirus has placed a lot of sporting events on hold in 2020, and it also will be the year Vettel’s current contract is scheduled to end.

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#30. Canelo lvarez (tie)

- Total earnings: $37 million - Endorsement earnings: $2 million (#51 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $35 million (#13 among all athletes) - Sport: Boxing

Canelo Álvarez has a variety of endorsements under his sleeve that contribute to his total earnings. Some of them include the subscription sports streaming service DAZN, Under Armour, Hennessy, and Everlast. Álvarez’s boxing matches against Golovkin, the first in the U.S. not involving Mayweather or Pacquiao, have brought in some of the biggest pay-per-view ratings.

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#30. Damian Lillard (tie)

- Total earnings: $37 million - Endorsement earnings: $14.5 million (#24 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $22.5 million (#44 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Five-time All-Star Damian Lillard should be playing for the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers through 2025, earning more than $40 million a year. When he’s not on the court, he’s behind the mic as rapper Dame D.O.L.L.A. who’s released three studio albums, or serving as a Special Olympics ambassador. He has a long endorsement list with brand names like Adidas, Hulu, Spalding, Panini, State Farm, McDonald’s, and more.

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#29. Naomi Osaka

- Total earnings: $37.4 million - Endorsement earnings: $34 million (#8 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $3.4 million (#57 among all athletes) - Sport: Tennis

The only Japanese tennis player to win a Grand Slam event, and Asian to finish on top in singles competition rankings, Naomi Osaka was the highest-paid woman athlete in the world in 2019. Now 23, endorsement deals came her way from more than a dozen companies after she won the back-to-back Grand Slams at the 2018 U.S. Open and the 2019 Australian Open, including Nike, Nissan and Mastercard.

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#28. Klay Thompson

- Total earnings: $38.8 million - Endorsement earnings: $14 million (#25 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $24.8 million (#34 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Golden State Warriors’ Klay Thompson was the first player in NBA history to score 60 points in less than 30 minutes. Out of his total earnings, his endorsement deals make up approximately $14 million from Body Armour, Panini, Gillette, and more. The three-time NBA champion, five-time All-Star, and 2016 Olympic gold medal winner signed his contract with the Golden State Warriors in 2019.

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#27. Rafael Nadal

- Total earnings: $40 million - Endorsement earnings: $26 million (#16 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $14 million (#52 among all athletes) - Sport: Tennis

Known as the greatest clay court player, Rafael Nadal won his 12th French Open title and fourth U.S. Open title in 2019. Besides Nadal’s lavish contract deals, he is sponsored by Nike, Kia Motors, Quely, Emporio Armani, Babolat, Telefonica, Tommy Hilfiger, and more. With just his endorsements, he brings in an estimated $26 million a year. On the humanitarian front, Nadal helped raise money for Spain’s Red Cross efforts in the coronavirus pandemic.

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#26. Julio Jones

- Total earnings: $40.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $3 million (#44 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $37.5 million (#10 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

Julio Jones’ estimated net worth is about $25 million. After being drafted by the Atlanta Falcons in 2011, he’s had several endorsement deals from Bose, Visa, Chevrolet, and Under Armour. The three-year contract that he signed with the Falcons in 2019 includes a $25 million bonus.

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#25. Phil Mickelson

- Total earnings: $40.8 million - Endorsement earnings: $40 million (#6 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $0.8 million (#61 among all athletes) - Sport: Golf

“Lefty” Phil Mickelson’s endorsement deals play a big role in his yearly earnings. He’s partnered with such companies as Amstel Light, Melin, Callaway Golf, Heineken N.V., Intrepid Financial Partners, Exxon Mobil, Rolex, Amgen, and more. The five-time major champion who’s won 44 PGA Tour events has earned $91 million in career prize money, just behind Tiger Woods.

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#24. Kyrie Irving

- Total earnings: $41.9 million - Endorsement earnings: $18 million (#21 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $23.9 million (#40 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Kyrie Irving plays for the Brooklyn Nets and more than half of his earnings are from endorsement deals with brands like Pepsi, Nike, General Mills and Aleve. With Nike, the sales of Irving’s NBA shoe collection, which includes the Kyrie 1, Kyrie 2 and Flytrap, is just second behind Lebron James’ collection. While playing for the Boston Celtics, Irving’s image appeared on the cover of NBA 2K18.

 

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#23. Novak Djokovic

- Total earnings: $44.6 million - Endorsement earnings: $32 million (#9 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $12.6 million (#53 among all athletes) - Sport: Tennis

Novak Djokovic earned $144 million in career prize money, and places third behind Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in career Slam titles. For his efforts in winning five of the last seven Grand Slam titles—17 overall—and eight Australian Opens, he has attracted numerous sponsors, including Peugeot, Lacoste, Asics, Head, Seiko Watch Corp., Telekom Srbija, FitLine and more. During the coronavirus pandemic, Djokovic has pledged money to Serbia for medical equipment.

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#22. Drew Brees

- Total earnings: $44.8 million - Endorsement earnings: $15 million (#23 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $29.8 million (#19 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

Drew Brees, a 19-year NFL veteran, started with the San Diego Chargers and has played quarterback for the New Orleans Saints since 2006. He’s set passing records, received accolades and earned more than $247 million for on-field play, in addition to his $15 million worth of endorsement money from some of the world’s biggest names, such as Microsoft, Procter & Gamble, Pepsi, Nike, Verizon Communications, and more. Committed to various charitable causes, Brees helped New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and he also contributed a substantial amount to help the relief efforts in Louisiana during the coronavirus pandemic.

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#21. Tom Brady

- Total earnings: $45 million - Endorsement earnings: $12 million (#27 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $33 million (#14 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

No longer a New England Patriot, after 20 years with the team, Tom Brady’s now a free agent quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He holds endorsements with Wheels Up, Upper Deck, Under Armour, and other companies, though recently he’s focused on the promotion of his own lifestyle brand—TB12. He announced a new endeavor earlier this year, a multi-platform content company called 199 Productions that will be releasing documentaries, feature films and TV shows.

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#20. Deontay Wilder

- Total earnings: $46.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $0.5 million (#58 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $46 million (#8 among all athletes) - Sport: Boxing

Widely known as “The Bronze Bomber” after winning a bronze medal in the 2008 Olympics, Deontay Wilder’s endorsement list is not as extensive as most on the list, but he has partnered with Everlast. The majority of his earnings come from defending his titles in the ring.

In one of the most profitable years of his career, Deontay Wilder made about $46 million in 2020.

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#19. Anthony Joshua

- Total earnings: $47 million - Endorsement earnings: $11 million (#30 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $36 million (#11 among all athletes) - Sport: Boxing

Anthony Joshua is known to have a massive following on social media and thus marketing gold when it comes to endorsements. His deals span across Under Armour, Land Rover, Beats, Sky Sports, and more. Joshua was the heavyweight champion of the world for four years straight.

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#18. Giannis Antetokounmpo

- Total earnings: $47.6 million - Endorsement earnings: $28 million (#14 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $19.6 million (#51 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

The Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo’s achievements include being the NBA’s Most Valuable Player and being a four-time NBA All-Star. He has made a name for himself and a hot commodity among brands. Some of his major deals include 2K Sports, Hulu, Ready Nutrition, and Nike. His net worth currently sits at about $43 million.

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#17. James Harden

- Total earnings: $47.8 million - Endorsement earnings: $19 million (#20 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $28.8 million (#23 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

With a 13-year Adidas deal that is about $15 million a year, James Harden of the Houston Rockets is bound to make the highest-paid athletes list for a number of years. On top of his shooting guard skills on the court, he’s managed to nab even more endorsements with brands like BODYARMOR SuperDrink, Electronic Arts Inc., and more.

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#16. Conor McGregor

- Total earnings: $48 million - Endorsement earnings: $16 million (#22 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $32 million (#16 among all athletes) - Sport: Mixed martial arts

A dominant figure in mixed martial arts, Conor McGregor earned $30 million in January when he knocked out Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone in the first round. He has endorsed brands such as Wynn Resorts, Electronic Arts Inc., Burger King, Beats by Dre and more. In 2018, he also renewed his sponsorship with Reebok. Founder of Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey, McGregor’s brand is available in several countries, including the United States.

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#15. Jared Goff

- Total earnings: $49 million - Endorsement earnings: $2 million (#51 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $47 million (#7 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

Los Angeles Rams’ quarterback Jared Goff, who led the team to the Super Bowl in his third season, recently signed a four-year $134 million deal with an additional $46 million in bonuses. He has $2 million in endorsements from companies like Nike, Pizza Hut, and Red Bull. But wait, there’s more. In 2019, he released JG16, his own clothing line that features hats, t-shirts and hoodies. The California native also donated funds to the L.A. Food Bank to provide a million meals for needy residents during the coronavirus pandemic.

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#14. Rory McIlroy

- Total earnings: $52 million - Endorsement earnings: $30 million (#13 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $22 million (#45 among all athletes) - Sport: Golf

Golfer Rory McIlroy, who won the PGA Tour Championship and FedEx Cup in 2019 and collected a cool $15 million for his efforts, is helping golfers get better at their games with GolfPass, a digital subscription instructional service. He has a $200 million multiyear deal with Nike, and endorsements from other companies such as Omega, TaylorMade, UnitedHealth Group and Upper Deck. Returning to the #1 spot in World Golf Rankings in February, McIlroy now is the eighth-highest earning golfer in PGA history.

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#13. Lewis Hamilton

- Total earnings: $54 million - Endorsement earnings: $12 million (#27 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $42 million (#9 among all athletes) - Sport: Racing

After securing the Formula 1 title in 2019, Lewis Hamilton became the second driver in history with six championship wins. He’s one of the most marketable drivers, who recently added Vodafone-USD to his endorsements, joining Hamilton’s other partners that include Bose, L’Oréal, Mercedes-Benz, Monster Energy, Police, Puma and Tommy Hilfiger

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#12. Russell Westbrook

- Total earnings: $56 million - Endorsement earnings: $27 million (#15 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $29 million (#20 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

The nine-time NBA All-Star signed a $207 million contract with the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2017, and in 2019 he was traded to the Houston Rockets. An Olympic gold medalist, in 2017 he had extended his deal with Nike’s Jordan brand for 10 years and then announced his first signature shoe. Off the court, Westbrook’s portfolio includes five car dealerships in the Los Angeles area.

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#11. Tyson Fury

- Total earnings: $57 million - Endorsement earnings: $7 million (#34 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $50 million (#6 among all athletes) - Sport: Boxing

More than 200,000 copies of Tyson Fury’s autobiography, titled “Behind the Mask,” have sold since its November 2019 publication. Known in the boxing ring as the “The Gypsy King,” Fury is a heavyweight boxing world champion who has never lost and was the highest-paid fighter in all the world in 2019.

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#10. Carson Wentz

- Total earnings: $59.1 million - Endorsement earnings: $4 million (#43 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $55.1 million (#5 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

In the 2016 NFL Draft, Carson Wentz was a second overall pick, and in June 2019, the Philadelphia Eagles signed Carson Wentz to a $128 million contract extension that included almost $47 million in bonuses. His endorsements include Nike, Fanatics, NRG, Bobcat, Amazon, Sanford Health, Bose, Scheels All Sports, Wheels Up, and BlackRidge Bank.

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#9. Kirk Cousins

- Total earnings: $60.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $2.5 million (#49 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $58 million (#4 among all athletes) - Sport: Football

Kirk Cousins started his career in the NFL in 2012 with the Washington Redskins. In 2018, the quarterback signed a fully guaranteed $84 million deal with the Minnesota Vikings. In March, a $66 million contract extension was on the table for Cousins to sign that included a $30 million signing bonus. He currently has endorsement arrangements with Bose, CenturyLink, Nike, and Panini.

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#8. Tiger Woods

- Total earnings: $62.3 million - Endorsement earnings: $60 million (#2 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $2.3 million (#58 among all athletes) - Sport: Golf

Tiger Woods turned professional in 1996 and since then has earned $1.5 billion from his endorsements, appearances and course design fees. He remains one of the highest-paid athletes in the world. His career is unprecedented. He has 106 wins in tournaments worldwide, including 82 PGA Tour wins, and 15 major titles—five Masters Tournaments; and four PGA three U.S. Open; and three British Open championships. Still teeing off in tournaments, Woods also heads a multibrand enterprise of his companies and philanthropic efforts. In addition to a book deal with HarperCollins, release of co-created golf irons with TaylorMade, and the opening of his first public golf course—Payne’s Valley in Missouri, he has endorsements with Bridgestone, Discovery Communications, Inc., Hero Motocorp, Monster Energy, Nike, Rolex, TaylorMade and Upper Deck.

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#7. Kevin Durant

- Total earnings: $63.9 million - Endorsement earnings: $35 million (#7 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $28.9 million (#22 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Joining the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets in 2019, Kevin Durant is locked into a four-year $164 million contract with the team. He was forced to sit out most of the 2019-2020 season due to injury, but that didn’t stop his business endeavors. He’s used the $35 million he’s earned in endorsements, with such companies as Degree, Master & Dynamic, Nike, and YouTube, to invest in more than 40 other companies and charitable foundations.

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#6. Stephen Curry

- Total earnings: $74.4 million - Endorsement earnings: $44 million (#5 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $30.4 million (#18 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Stephen Curry was drafted by the Golden State Warriors in 2009. His records and MVP performances during those years surely led to his 2017 signing of a $200 million contract, an NBA first. He has an estimated $44 million in endorsements with Callaway Golf, Chase, Fanatics, and Under Armour. Curry launched SC30 in 2017, a company that manages his financial investments, partnerships and philanthropy. He also owns Unanimous Media, a production company that released the film “Breakthrough” in 2019, which is based on the book “The Impossible” by Joyce Smith.

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#5. Lebron James

- Total earnings: $88.2 million - Endorsement earnings: $60 million (#2 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $28.2 million (#25 among all athletes) - Sport: Basketball

Lebron James, or King James, as many of his fans call him, is the highest-paid athlete in the NBA. James was drafted in 2003 at 18, and played for the Cleveland Cavaliers. He hasn’t slowed his pace since. He also played for the Miami Heat and in 2018 became a Los Angeles Laker in a four-year $153 million deal. The four-time MVP has the most endorsements in the NBA, with companies such as 2K Sports, AT&T, Beats Electronics, Coca-Cola, GMC, KIA Motors, Nike, RIMOWA, and Walmart. He owns a production company, a health and wellness company, and a media company, in addition to being an investor and paid endorser for 19 Blaze Pizza franchises in Chicago and South Florida. The LeBron James Family Foundation also has given back to communities through various educational endeavors on numerous occasions.

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#4. Neymar

- Total earnings: $95.5 million - Endorsement earnings: $25 million (#18 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $70.5 million (#2 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

Neymar, who plays as a forward for Ligue 1 club Paris Saint-Germain and the Brazil national team, signed a $350 million contract with Paris Saint-Germain through June 2022 and is the second-most popular athlete on social media with 244 million followers, which many brands see as highly marketable. He became the first soccer ambassador for Nike’s Jordan Brand in 2016. Other sponsors include Beats Electronics, DAZN, Electronic Arts Inc., Gillette, Mastercard, Red Bull, and TCL.

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#3. Lionel Messi

- Total earnings: $104 million - Endorsement earnings: $32 million (#9 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $72 million (#1 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

Lionel Messi plays as a forward for the Spanish club Barcelona and the Argentina national team. He is a six-time recipient of FIFA’s Player of the Year and the European Golden Shoe for top scoring. He’s recorded 438 goals, which includes 36 hat tricks for Barcelona, both a club and La Liga record. He has a long-term deal with Adidas and endorsements with other companies such as Gatorade, Huawei, Mastercard, and Pepsi. In March 2020, the World Health Organization asked Messi to join its campaign throughout the world to help stop the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

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#2. Cristiano Ronaldo

- Total earnings: $105 million - Endorsement earnings: $45 million (#4 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $60 million (#3 among all athletes) - Sport: Soccer

Portuguese player Cristiano Ronaldo, joined Juventus in 2018 after nine years with Real Madrid. He scored 28 goals in the 2018-19 season, leading the club to a Serie A title and the Italian Super Cup. In 2020, he became the most followed athlete on social media, with 200 million followers on Instagram. This makes him very marketable, and he’s established endorsements with Nike, Altice, DAZN, Herbalife, MTG, and Unilever.

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#1. Roger Federer

- Total earnings: $106.3 million - Endorsement earnings: $100 million (#1 among all athletes) - Salary/Winnings: $6.3 million (#55 among all athletes) - Sport: Tennis

Roger Federer’s brand accomplishments have put him in the #1 spot on the list of highest paid athletes for a reason. Federer is predicted to become the first billionaire in tennis in the year 2020. His 10-year $300 million deal with Uniqlo; multiple deals with brands such asBarilla, Credit Suisse Group (ADS), Mercedes-Benz, Rolex, and Wilson Sporting Goods;and millions of dollars in prize money for his skill on the court is unmatched. Since its creation, his foundation has raised sizable amounts of money to help educate children in Africa.

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