Among the most prosperous people across the globe are the athletes. They are paid because of their talents and hard work. Thus, athletes that dominated their respective sports are the ones who are paid higher. These personas in the sports industry receive not only high salaries and contracts but also they have the tendency to be eyed by sponsors and endorsements in which it makes a considerable addition to their money. These high profile athletes are not only known to excel in sports but also famous for being wealthy. This article shows you the list of 40 athletes that possess millions of wealth.
1. Dale Earnhardt Jr.: $400 million
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is one of the mainstream drivers today. The beloved NASCAR driver is tagged as “Pied Piper” of Daytona because of his success at Daytona International Speedway. He earns millions through his chosen sport and endorsements from huge companies such as Goodyear and Chevrolet. Earnhardt retired in 2017. However, he still owns a team as part of his investments. Up to now, Earnhardt has an estimated net worth of $400 million, thanks to his excellent money management skills.
2. Phil Mickelson: $400 million
Phil Mickelson nicknamed “Lefty,” rake in 44 PGA won, and was able to win five major championships such as 2004, 2006 and 2010 Masters titles, a 2005 PGA Championship, and the Open Championship in 2013. Aside from Mickelson’s earnings of an estimated $90 million as an athlete, he also endorses luxurious brands such as Amgen and Rolex. Thus, according to reports, the net worth of Phil Mickelson is estimated to be around $400 million. His success earned him to be in the top 12 golf players to win three out of the four majors in history.
3. Lionel Messi: $400 million
Lionel Messi is arguably one of the best football players in the world. He plays forward and the captains in both the Argentina National Team and the Spanish Club Barcelona. Messi was able to achieve a record six Ballon d’Or awards and a record six European Golden Shoes. Sources shared that in 2019 alone, Messi earned $127 million, and he is considered to be one of the highest-paid athletes. Up to date, Messi has a net worth of $400 million, considering his endorsements and investments.
4. Shaquille O’Neal: $400 million
Shaquille O’Neal is no doubt one of the biggest names in the sports industry. While playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, he rose to fame, and the rest is history. Now that O’Neal is retired, he has millions of hard-earned money to enjoy and retire luxuriously. According to reports, O’Neal still earns around $60 million a year due to his endorsements and other business investments. As of 2020, it appears that O’Neal has an estimated net worth of $400 million.
5. Vinnie Johnson: $400 million
Vinnie Johnson is best known as “The Microwave” while he is still an active player for the basketball team Detroit Pistons. He aided the team in two championships while he is still on his prime years. The achievements and legacy of Johnson has been rewarded with a career of being the Chairman and CEO of the Piston Group. The company is now one of the largest automotive supply companies in the US. After all of the hard work and dedication of Johnson, he was able to have a net worth of $400 million.
6. LeBron James: $450 million
Another entry coming from the NBA is LeBron James. He is also one of the dominant players to step foot on the court and considered to be one of the highest-paid athletes. James also carries multiple endorsements to back up his wealth. In 2018, he reportedly signed a contract with Los Angeles Lakers that is worth $153 million. A few years prior, James also signed a contract with Cleveland Cavaliers with an equally significant deal. As a result, James has an estimated net worth of $440 million.
7. Roger Federer: $450 million
Roger Federer is one of the oldest male tennis players that is still active on the tournament route. He is ranked number 3 in men’s singles by the Association of Tennis Professionals. At the age of 38, it did not stop Federer from dominating the sport as he was the runner up at Wimbledon 2019. Aside from his winnings, Federer also has a contract with luxurious brands such as Mercedes-Benz and Rolex. Federer may also have other investments and businesses. Thus, he has an estimated net worth of $450 million.
8. David Beckham: $450 million
During his prime of being a football star, David Beckham proved himself to be one of the greatest athletes. The English football star played in the teams of Manchester United, Preston North End, Real Madrid, Milan, LA Galaxy, Paris Saint-Germain, and the England national team before retiring in 2013. Aside from being an athlete, he is also a model at the same time. Currently, Beckham is the co-owner of Salford City and the current president of Miami CF. With all his earnings from being an athlete, endorsements, and other business ventures, Beckham has a total net worth of $450 million.
9. Cristiano Ronaldo: $460 million
Another successful football player is Cristiano Ronaldo. Throughout his career, Ronaldo was able to achieve five Ballons d’Or four European Golden Shoes and won 29 trophies. In 2016 and 2017, Forbes included Ronaldo to be one of the highest-paid athletes, and Time considered him in 2014 to be in the 100 Most Influential People. According to sources, Ronaldo earns $64 million as base salary and an additional $40 million from his endorsements. Thus, his current estimated net worth is $460 million.
10. Eddie Jordan: $475 million
Eddie Jordan, also known as EJ, was able to win the Irish Kart Championship in 1971. He then transferred to Formula Ford in 1974. Years after, he founded and owned the Jordan Grand Prix, which a Formula One Constructor that operated from 1991 to 2005. Jordan is also a chief analyst for Formula One coverage on the BBC from 2009 to 2015. Jordan then joined Channel 4 after the BBC pulled out in 2016. With the success of his multiple careers, Jordan was able to garner a net worth of $475 million.
11. Kobe Bryant: $600 million
Kobe Bryant is one of the legendary basketball players in the NBA. He entered the league straight from high school and played his entire career for 20 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers. In 2008, Bryant was named the NBA Most Valuable Player and a two-time NBA Finals MVP winner. Unfortunately, Bryant passed away with his daughter Gianna due to a helicopter accident and left the whole world mourning. As for Bryant’s wealth, he was able to leave his family net worth of $600 million through his earnings, multiple investments, and endorsements.
12. Floyd Mayweather: $565 million
Floyd Mayweather is one athlete who stands by his nickname “The Money.” During his prime with his boxing career, Mayweather was able to hold five world titles in five weight classes and also the lineal championship in four weight classes. Mayweather retired with an undefeated record. As follows, in 2006, Mayweather founded his boxing promotional firm called Mayweather Promotions, after he left Bob Arum’s Top Rank. According to reports, he generated around 24 million PPV buys and has $1.67 billion in revenue throughout his career. Mayweather has an estimated net worth of $565 million, but other sources claim that the boxing champion is around $700 million to $1 billion.
13. Tom Brady: $580 million
Tom Brady is arguably one of the greatest quarterbacks in the NFL. Playing for the New England Patriots, Brady was able to dominate the American Football. He played in a record of nine Duper Bowl and won six of them, which are XXXVI, XXXVIII, XXXIX, XLIX, LI, and LIII. The winnings of Brady is said to be the most wins of any player in the NFL history. In addition to his successful career, Brady also won a record of four Super Bowl MVP awards as well as three NFL MVP awards. It goes to show that his net worth of $580 million speaks so much of him being a successful athlete.
14. Junior Bridgeman: $600 million
Junior Bridgeman is a former professional basketball player who is part of the NBA for 12 years. However, aside from his athletic career, it was his investments and businesses which enabled him to have a net worth of $600 million. Bridgeman first worked and learned the business model of Wendy’s fast-food restaurant franchise. After he retired from the NBA, he invested in the franchise and eventually owned around 100 various Wendy’s and Chili’s restaurant, before selling it in 2016. Bridgeman is also the CEO of Bridgeman Food Inc.
15. Magic Johnson: $600 million
Magic Johnson is a retired professional basketball player who is also the former president of the basketball operations of the Los Angeles Lakers for the NBA. He played as a point guard for the Lakers for 13 seasons. Johnson was able to win the championship and an NBA Finals Most Valuable Player award during his rookie season. In the 1980s, Johnson also won four more championships with the Lakers. However, his net worth of $600 million did not entirely come from being a professional athlete, as he also founded the Magic Johnson Enterprises. Also, he is the co-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
16. Roger Staubach: $600 million
Roger Staubach is a former American football quarterback who played his entire 10-year career for the Dallas Cowboys of the National Football League. He also attended the United States Naval Academy, where he achieved the 1963 Heisman Trophy. Staubach also happens to lead the Cowboys into Super Bowl victories, such as the Super Bowl VI and XII. He is named the MVP of Super Bowl VI and ranks as the first four-player to win both Super Bowl MVP and the Heisman Trophy. Given his success as an athlete, Staubach also founded Staubach Company and served as chairman and CEO until June 20, 2007. He then resigned, and as of to date, he has a net worth of $600 million.
17. Tiger Woods: $800 million
Tiger Woods is no doubt one of the best golfers in the industry. He is consistently part of the highest-paid athletes, and throughout the 2000s, Woods dominated the tournaments and was able to have multiple endorsements deals. However, in 2009, Woods was part of a messy divorce and affected some of his endorsements. Still, Woods has a net worth of $800 million, and it is easy to say that money management is easy for him. In 2019, Woods made a comeback and won his first major tournament after 11 years.
18. Michael Schumacher: $800 million
Michael Schumacher is one of the most recognizable and most successful Formula One Drivers across the globe. His career spanned from 1991 to 2006. Schumacher is the only driver in history to able to win seven Formula One World Championships, in which five of it he won consecutively. Being the most successful driver in the sport’s history, Schumacher holds the most records of the World Championship titles. Schumacher was able to accumulate a net worth of $800 million throughout his career. Just like can be seen in the photo, he has multiple endorsements attached in his uniform.
19. Ion Țiriac with $1.1 billion
Ion Tiriac is a former tennis player, ice hockey player, and a wealthy businessman. He is also the previous singles top 10 player on the ATP tour and was the winner of one grand slam title, which is the 1970 French Open in men’s doubles. Tiriac is also the first male player to play against a woman in a sanctioned tennis tournament. As for the highlight of his ice hockey career, he participated as a defense in the Romanian national team at the 1964 Winter Olympics. Tiriac is currently the president of the Romanian Tennis Federations. His career and other investments earned him a net worth of $1.1 billion.
20. Michael Jordan: $1.9 billion
The legendary Michael Jordan is considered to be the face of Basketball. His reputation as a player led him to become one of the most successful athletes. Coming from his legacy at the University of North Carolina, to his respective titled career with Chicago Bulls, Jordan receives multiple endorsements. One of the famous brands that Jordan endorsed is Nike. Jordan also is a co-owner of Charlotte Hornets. With all his earnings, investments, and business ventures, Jordan was able to have a net worth of $1.9 billion to date.
21. Vince McMahon: $2 billion
Vince McMahon is one of the respected athlete and businessman. Aside from being a professional wrestling promoter and executive, McMahon is also a football executive. McMahon mostly worked on the corporate side of the WWE, and sometimes appears to do a match. McMahon takes over the WWE Company from his father in 1982 and has the majority as an owner. Also, McMahon is the founder and owner of the Alpha Entertainment, which is the holding company of the XFL (American Football League). His brilliant mind when it comes to business garnered a net worth of $2 billion.
22. John Elway with $145 million
John Elway rose to fame playing as the quarterback for the Denver Broncos during his prime in the ‘80s-‘90s. Throughout his career, Elway was able to secure two Super Bowl victories. After he retired as an athlete, Elway branched out from NFL and put some of his investment money into restaurants and car dealerships. Elway then made a comeback into his team and served as the General Manager. Thanks to his wise investments, he was able to have an estimated net worth of $145 million.
23. Rafael Nadal: $180 million
Another tennis celebrity athlete is Rafael Nadal. He is also considered to be one of the highest-paid tennis players in the world. The Spanish athlete has won prize money of $110 million in 2001 alone. Thus, in 2019, Nadal was able to win his 19th Grand Slam title, and it is the second-most in history for male players, as he was ready to dominate the French Open. Up to date, Nadal has an estimated net worth of $180 million from his earnings and endorsements.
24. Derek Jeter: $185 million
Derek Jester is a former baseball shortstop, baseball executive, and businessman. Since 2017, Jeter has been the Chief Executive Officer or the CEO and part-owner of the Miami Marlins of Major League Baseball. As a playing athlete, Jeter spent his entire 20-year career in the MLB with the New York Yankees. All his efforts as an athlete rewarded him. Jeter was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame as part of its class of 2020. All of his earnings, investments, and endorsements have accumulated, and Jeter has a net worth of $185 million.
25. John Madden: $200 million
John Madden is a former football coach and sportscaster. He was able to win a Super Bowl as a head coach of the Oakland Raiders. After finalizing his retirement from coaching, Madden became a famous color commentator for the NFL telecasts. Also, Madden participated in EA’s Madden NFL video games since 1988. According to reports, Madden earns a percentage of every game that is sold. In 2005 alone, he received a payout of $150 million for the use of the game. All of Madden’s earnings and other investments enables him to have a $200 million net worth.
26. Steve Young: $200 million
Steve Young is a former professional American football quarterback who successfully played 15 seasons in the National Football League. Young is famously known for his 13 seasons playing for the San Francisco 49ers. He also took part in playing with the NFL Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Los Angeles Express of the United States Football League. Thus, Young’s money management skills and excellent investment planning rewarded him with a net worth of $200 million. We could easily say that he could luxuriously retire with the given wealth that Young has.
27. David Robinson: $200 million
Another entry from the National Basketball Association is David Robinsons. He played as the center for the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA for the span of his career. Since Robison was able to serve as an officer in the United States Navy, he earned the nickname “The Admiral.” During the prime years of Robinson, he achieves a 10-time NBA All-Star, two-time NBA Champion in the years 1999 and 2003, and the NBA MVP in the year 1995. Notably, Robinson is the only player from the Naval Academy to be part of the NBA. As for the wealth of Robinson, he has a net worth of $200 million.
28. Peyton Manning with $200 million
Peyton Williams Manning is a football player who was a quarterback and played for 18 seasons in the NFL. Due to his numerous achievements, Manning was able to have a net worth of $200 million. In his career, Manning spent 14 seasons with the Indianapolis Colts and for the last four seasons with the Denver Broncos. During the tenure of his career, Manning led the Colts to the eight-division championships, two AFC championships, and one Super Bowl title. However, on March 7, 2016, Manning officially retired as a player. With all of his investments and hard-earned wealth can surely give him a relaxing retirement.
29. Hakeem Olajuwon: $200 million
Hakeem Olajuwon is another remarkable basketball player. He played the center position in the NBA from 1984 to 2002, with the teams of Houston Rockets and the Toronto Raptors. Olajuwon led the Rockets to back-to-back NBA championships in 1994 and 1995. On the NBA offseason in 2006, Olajuwon opened his first Big Man Camp. Thus, in 2008, Olajuwon was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame, and into the FIBA Hall of Fame in 2016. His remarkable success as an athlete rewarded him a net worth of $200 million.
30. Manny Pacquiao: $220 million
Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao is also one of the famous boxers across the globe. Aside from being a boxing champion, he also serves as Senator of the Philippines since 2016. Pacquiao is considered by multiple boxing historians to be one of the highest professional boxers of all time. Pacquiao is the only boxer in the eight-division world champion to won the twelve major world titles in history. He is also the first boxer to win the lineal championship in five different weight classes. His earnings of being an athlete and a politician rewarded him a net worth of $220 million.
31. Dave Whelan: $220 million
Dave Whelan is a former English footballer who has acquired an estimated net worth of $220 million. After he played for the Blackburn Rovers F.C. and the Crewe Alexandra F.C., Whelan used his investment money in several supermarkets and retailed chains. Whelan then expands his investments into some of the top businesses in the United Kingdom. Whelan also bought the then-Division Three club, Wigan Athletic F.C., as well as the stadium the club plays in. Whelan then transformed it into a premier league.
32. Wayne Gretzky: $250 million
Wayne Gretzky is also one of the most respected and notable names in hockey, and tagged as “The Great One.” He successfully played 20 seasons in the National Hockey League for four teams from the years 1979 to 1999. After Gretzky retired, he founded the Wayne Gretzky Foundation. He also served as the coach for the Phoenix Coyotes and became the Vice Chairman at the Oilers Entertainment Group. All of his achievements and investments garnered Gretzky an estimated net worth of $250 million.
33. Grant Hill: $250 million
Another wealthy NBA superstar is Grant Hill. He has a net worth of $250 million to date. Hill played for multiple teams in his career, such as the L.A. Clippers, the Orlando Magic, the Phoenix Suns, and the Detroit Pistons. During his prime years, reports claimed that Hill earned around $140 million from his salary and up to $120 million worth of endorsements. Aside from that, Hill reportedly signed a contract worth $80 million with the shoe company Fila, followed by a lifetime deal of $10 million per year.
34. Gary Player: $200 million
Gary Player is also one of the legendary golfers. In the prime of his career, Player was able to win nine major championships on the regular and nine major champions on the Champions Tour. In 1965, Player won the U.S. Open and became the only non-American to win all four majors in a career, famously known as the career Grand Slam. He achieves all of those at the age of 29. Now that he is 84 years old, the retired PGA star has brought himself an estimated net worth to $200 million.
35. Dwayne’ The Rock’ Johnson: $280 million
Aside from being famous for wrestling and acting, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is also a producer and investor. With all of Johnson’s remarkable achievements, he has a net worth of $280 million. Johnson is a retired professional wrestler for the World Wrestling Federation that is currently known as WWE. His wrestling career spanned for eight years before pursuing his acting career. Johnsons is presently an actor for successful films such as The Fast and The Furious movie franchise. According to reports, Johnson’s films have grossed $3.5 billion in North America alone, which made him one of the most successful and highest-grossing box-office stars of all time.
36. Greg Norman with $300 million
Greg Norman is also one of the famous golf players in sports history. The Australian athlete spent 331 weeks as the world’s Number 1 Official World Golf Rankings ranked golfer in the years 1980 and 1990. Norman won 88 professional tournaments, which include 20 PGA Tour tournaments and two majors: The Open Championships in both in 1986 and 1993. Norman was inducted into the World Gold Hall of Fame in 2001. Presently, Norman serves as the chairman and CEO of the Greg Norman Company. His achievements gave him a net worth of $300 million to date.
37. George Foreman: $300 million
George Foreman is a retired professional boxer who competed in the years between 1969 and 1997. Also known as “Big George,” Foreman is a two-time world heavyweight champion. He is also an Olympic gold medalist. Aside from boxing, Foreman is also an author and entrepreneur. Best known for endorsing the product the George Foreman Grill, it is reported that Salton paid him $138 million in 1999 to use his name. With all his success, Foreman was able to have a net worth of $300 million.
38. Jack Nicklaus: $320 million
Jack Nicklaus is another successful golf player. Over a quarter-century, Nicklaus won a record of 18 major championships, which is three more than the second-placed Tiger Woods. Nicklaus is also known to focus on the major championships such as the Masters Tournament, U.S. Open, Open Championship, and PGA Championship and to play a selective schedule of regular PGA Tour events. All in all, he competed in 164 major tournaments. Nicklaus also has different businesses and investments. The now 80 years old still has a net worth of $320 million.
39. Alex Rodriguez: $350 million
Alex Rodriguez is also known as “A-Rod,” is also considered to be one of the greatest baseball players in history. The now-retired professional baseball shortstop and third baseman was able to play 22 seasons in Major League Baseball. Rodriguez played seven seasons with the Seattle Mariners, three seasons with the Texas Rangers, and for the New York Yankees for twelve seasons. Rodriguez started his professional career as one of the sport’s sought-after athlete. His $350 million speaks so much of his success and legacy on his respective sport.
40. Oscar De La Hoya: $200 million
Oscar De La Hoya, also known as the “The Golden Boy of Boxing,” is also one of the successful boxers. In 2002, De La Hoya became a boxing promoter and a mixed martial arts promoter in 2018. For his boxing career, De La Hoya competed from 1992 to 2008. He was able to win multiple world titles in six weight classes. De La Hoya’s success includes the lineal championship in three weight classes. Thus, De La Hoya garnered a net worth of $200 million from his earnings as athletes and other investments.
These remarkable athletes on our list have dominated their respective sports. Their talents in their chosen fields made them the best in the world. Their millions of net worth speak so much about their success. But, it clearly shows that these athletes know where to put their investment money in. As a result, they still have millions of dollars’ worth of wealth even though they are retired.