5 Highest Paid NBA Players of 2015
National Basketball Association (NBA) is a basketball league where you can see some of the most virtuously played games in the world, so it’s no wonder that NBA players are some of the most recognizable sportsmen in the world.
Skilled NBA players are important for their franchises, due to their public appeal, they are very recognizable, and people (especially youths) look up to them. They are also sought-after by other brands and offered various endorsement deals because of their marketability, thus certain NBA players earn a lot more money than others. According to Forbes, these are the 5 highest paid NBA players of 2015.
Being one of the basketball’s greats, Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James is successful both in his jersey and business suit. He provided a magnificent performance in the 2015 NBA finals, earned four MVP titles in his career, and is currently one of the top players in the NBA league.
He has endorsement earnings that are twice as much as his basketball salary. James has contracts with Tencent, Beats by Dre headphone collection, Audemars Piguet (Swiss watches), and big corporations such as Coca-Cola, Nike, and McDonald’s. All this puts him on the list as one of the highest-paid athletes in the world.
Total earnings: $64.6 million
Salary: $20.6 million
Endorsements: $44 million
With his NBA salary worth $20,158,622, an endorsement deal with Nike that brings him $30 million annually, and deals with Panini, General Electric, Gatorade, 2K Sports and Sprint, have brought the Oklahoma City Thunder’s small forward to the 2nd place in the list of highest paid NBA ballers.
The Washington native and NBA’s MVP of the year 2014 unfortunately awaits a season-ending foot surgery, due to an injury that had him playing in only 27 games. He doesn’t keep all his money to himself; he shares his wealth with his community. The American Red Cross received a donation from Durant for the victims of the Moore tornado, in 2013.
Total earnings: $54 million
Salary: $19 million
Endorsements: $35 million
The well-known shooting guard (Philadelphia native) has spent his whole 20-year-long career playing for the Los Angeles Lakers. Five NBA champion titles, 2 NBA Finals MVP, and 1 NBA’s MVP title are (among many others) some of Bryant’s career achievements and recognitions. This led him to an unbelievable, fully-guaranteed two-year contract worth $48.5 million by the Lakers management.
When we add his earnings from endorsement deals with Lenovo, Nike, Turkish Air, Hublot and Panini, it reaches up to $26 million; his annual earnings place him in the third place among the highest paid NBA players.
Total earnings: $49.5 million
Salary: $23.5 million
Endorsements: $26 million
This 26-year-old player was titled NBA’s Most Valuable Player in 2011. He was the cover athlete of NBA 2K13 and 2K Sports, is a part-owner of Giordano’s Pizzeria (Chicago), with endorsement deals with Skullcandy headphones, Force Factor, Powerade, and Nissan. But, besides that, the biggest endorsement he can boast about is a deal with Adidas. It is a 13-year contract worth $185 million.
Total earnings: $38.9 million
Salary: $18.9 million
Endorsements: $20 million
Anthony showed his exceptional skills and gained popularity while playing for the Denver Nuggets (2003-2011), and also when he transferred to the New York Knicks. According to espn.go.com, Carmelo Anthony’s NBA salary reaches $22,875,000.
He signed a contract worth $124 million to remain with the Knicks’ team for another five years, including a no-trade clause. The two-time Olympic gold medalist launched his own investment firm named M7 Tech Partners, and made their first investments in Hullabalu, a children’s media company.
Total earnings: $30.5 million
Salary: $22.5 million
Endorsements: $8 million
If these numbers seem incredible to you, you should grab some NBA tickets, and witness their games firsthand. These five players have slam-dunks, fast dribbles, and perfect three-point shots that are skills they are the best at. Popular and recognizable, teaming up with major companies brings a mutual profit.