Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods top Sportico’s list of highest-paid athletes in 2024, surprising with GOAT Lebron James’ position

Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods top Sportico’s list of highest-paid athletes in 2024, surprising with GOAT Lebron James’ position


NBA fans can have all the Michael Jordan and LeBron James GOAT debates they want, but his Airness is still well ahead when it comes to the highest-paid athlete in sports history.

Kurt Badenhausen of Sportico shared the publication’s top-10 highest-paid athletes ever, and Jordan tops the list with inflation-adjusted earnings of $3.75 billion. Golf legend Tiger Woods is second at $2.66 billion, while James rounds out the top five at $1.7 billion.


Michael Jordan lọt vào nhóm 400 người giàu nhất nước Mỹ

Here is the full top 10:

1. Michael Jordan, $3.75 billion


2. Tiger Woods, $2.66 billion


3. Cristiano Ronaldo, $1.92 billion

4. Arnold Palmer, $1.76 billion

5. LeBron James, $1.7 billion


6. Jack Nicklaus, $1.67 billion


6. Lionel Messi, $1.67 billion

8. David Beckham, $1.5 billion

9. Roger Federer, $1.49 billion

10. Floyd Mayweather, $1.48 billion


Có thể là đồ họa về 1 người, đang chơi bóng rổ, đám đông và văn bản cho biết '$1.76 BILLION LEBRON JAMES NFT WORTH IN 2024 bibigo LAKERS 23 sportskeeda tskeeda' 

Jordan was a legendary player on the court, winning six championships, six NBA Finals MVPs, five league MVPs and 10 scoring titles.

However, he played before salaries significantly expanded to today’s rates and was the league’s highest-paid player in just two of his 15 seasons. Badenhausen noted he made $94 million during his playing career, which would be nowhere near enough to put him atop this list.

Yet endorsement partnerships with Nike, Gatorade, Hanes, Upper Deck and more led to the majority of his riches.

The relationship in Nike in particular is a famous one, and the company’s pursuit of the rookie basketball star was the focus of the 2023 movie Air, which starred Viola Davis, Matt Damon, Ben Affleck and Jason Bateman, among others.

Jordan ended up signing with Nike in 1984 on a royalty-based deal that is still quite fruitful with Badenhausen pointing out Jordan Brand accounted for $6.6 billion in revenue last year alone.

Like Jordan, Woods made most of his money through incentives instead of PGA Tour prize money. The 15-time major champion has made $121 million in PGA Tour prize money, but partnerships with Nike, Bridgestone and far more accounted for the majority of his earned money.


Yet Jordan remains the gold standard even though he is more than 20 years removed from his retirement.

Current stars such as Jayson Tatum, Luka Dončić, Zion Williamson and Russell Westbrook are all signed with Jordan Brand, so the Jumpman logo remains well represented in today’s game. NBA jerseys also have a Jordan Brand patch, keeping him at the forefront every time teams take the floor.

Safe to say he doesn’t regret choosing Nike back in the 1980s.

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