Basketball is one of the most popular sports in the world and its players are some of the highest paid athletes. The top earners make millions of dollars each year from various sources including salaries, endorsements, and investments. In fact, there are several NBA superstars who have become some of the wealthiest people on the planet.
The NBA is one of the most lucrative sports leagues in the world, with players earning millions upon millions of dollars each year. Some are even billionaires. But who are these wealthy basketball stars?
In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the richest and most famous NBA players ever to grace the court — while also seeing which players were able to make even more money after their retirement!
20 of the Wealthiest Basketball Players to Play in the NBA
When actively playing, professional NBA players are some of the highest paid players in the world. However, once they leave they leave the court, that source of income usually stops — unless they get created and start a business or get better with their investments.
Below you will find a list of the twenty richest NBA players (active and retired) for 2023.
Michael Jordan Net Worth – $1.6 Billion
Michael Jordan is widely considered to be the greatest basketball player of all time, and his wealth is a testament to that. He has an estimated net worth of $1.6 billion dollars and earned most of his money through product endorsements, ownership of the Charlotte Hornets NBA team and investments in other sports teams like NASCAR’s Joe Gibbs Racing. He also owns multiple restaurants throughout the US.
LeBron James Net Worth – $1 Billion
LeBron James is currently one of the best players in professional basketball and it shows with his net worth at an estimated $1 Billion dollars. His biggest earnings come from endorsements but he has also briefly owned an investment firm called “Lebron James Enterprises” which bought stakes in various companies such as Apple and Beats by Dre.
Magic Johnson Net Worth – $600 Million
Magic Johnson is one of the most iconic basketball players of all time, and he also has a net worth of $600 million dollars. He earned most of his wealth through various business investments such as Starbucks, 24-Hour Fitness, T.G.I Friday’s, and Canyon Ranch Resorts.
Junior Bridgeman Net Worth – $600 Million
The name might not be familiar to many, but Junior Bridgeman is an ex-professional basketball player who now owns over 160 Wendy’s locations across the US. His estimated net worth currently stands at $600 Million dollars and he also holds franchises with Chili’s, Fazoli’s, Baskin Robbins, Orange Julius and other restaurant chains.
Shaquille O’Neal Net Worth – $400 Million
Big man, Shaquille O’Neal had a highly successful professional career and has a net worth of $400 million dollars. His wealth comes from his salary as a professional basketball player, business investments such as partnering with Papa John’s Pizza, and endorsement deals with Reebok and other brands.
Kobe Bryant Net Worth – $350 Million
Not only will Kobe Bryant go down as one of the most successful professional athletes in the world and has an estimated net worth of $350 Million, he will also live in infamy as his death was tragic and a huge devastating hit to everyone that loves the game. He earned most of his money through salary from the Los Angeles Lakers, but also owns Kobe Inc., which has invested in various business opportunities like sports drink BodyArmor and Derek Jeter’s The Players Tribune website.
Hakeem Olajuwon Net Worth – $200 Million
Possibly one of the top five center of all time, Hakeem Olajuwon was another exceptionally talented basketball player who retired from playing professionally in 2002 with a total net worth of $200 Million dollars. To this day he still earns money from endorsements and has appeared in many commercials for Nike, Gatorade and other brands.
Kevin Garnett Net Worth – $180 Million
As one of the most dominant forwards to ever play the game, Kevin Garnett also had an illustrious career as a professional basketball player before retiring with a net worth of $180 Million dollars. His wealth comes mostly from his salary playing for the Boston Celtics, Minnesota Timberwolves, Brooklyn Nets, and endorsement deals from companies like Adidas and Old Spice.
Grant Hill Net Worth – $180 Million
During his time in the NBA, Grant Hill was an excellent basketball player who retired with a total net worth of $180 Million dollars. He earned most of this money through salary playing for multiple teams and endorsements such as Nike, Sprite and PowerAde.
Tim Duncan Net Worth – $177 Million
Next up, we have Tim Duncan, who is one of the greatest power forwards to ever play in the NBA with a net worth estimated at $177 million. He earned most of his wealth through salary playing for the San Antonio Spurs, and also received endorsement deals with companies like IcyHot, Gatorade and Nike.
Kevin Durant Net Worth – $170 Million
The pride of the Brooklyn Nets, Kevin Durant is one of the highest paid athletes in the world. He has a net worth of $170 million and is considered one of the best players in NBA history. Durant’s career earnings include two championships with Golden State Warriors, four scoring titles, 10 All-Star selections and an MVP award. He also has several lucrative deals with big brands such as Nike and Beats by Dre.
Dirk Nowitzki Net Worth – $170 Million
This German basketball legend was born Dirk Werner Nowitzki on June 19th 1978 in Würzburg, Germany. With an impressive net worth of $170 million, he stands as one of the most successful professional basketball players in history. Known for his incredible shooting skills, Nowitzki led the Dallas Mavericks to their first NBA Championship in 2011. He is also a 13-time All-Star and winner of several prestigious individual awards.
Chris Webber Net Worth – $143 Million
One of the most accomplished players in NBA history, Chris Webber has a net worth of $143 million. During his basketball career, he was an integral part of the Sacramento Kings’ success and one of the catalysts for their playoff runs. He also won Rookie of the Year honors in 1994 as well as five All-Star selections during his illustrious career.
Gilbert Arenas Net Worth – $135 Million
Having earned a whopping $135 million net worth, Gilbert Arenas is one of the wealthiest professional basketball players today. Throughout his career, he played with the Washington Wizards, Orlando Magic, and Memphis Grizzlies. He won several awards during his time at the NBA such as three All-Star selections and a Most Improved Player of Year award.
Gary Payton Net Worth – $130 Million
A few years after being drafted in 1990, Gary Payton was already one of the top point guards in the game. He continued to dominate the court for over two decades, raking up career earnings of $130 million by the end of his legendary career. During this time he also earned nine All-Star selections and an MVP award. He is also considered one of the best defensive players in NBA history.
Russell Westbrook Net Worth – $125 Million
Russell Westbrook started playing basketball at the age of four and went on to become one of the most electrifying athletes in professional sports. In 2016, he was named MVP of the NBA season after leading his team to their sixth straight playoff appearance. His outstanding performance and leadership skills have earned him a personal net worth of $125 million.
Carlos Boozer Net Worth – $120 Million
Carlos Boozer was an All-American during his time at Duke University and he continued to shine as a professional athlete. He played in four All-Star games during his 14-year career and won two Olympic gold medals with Team USA. His hard work and success have earned him a personal net worth of $120 million.
Derrick Rose Net Worth – $115 Million
Derrick Rose is the youngest player to ever win the NBA MVP award, achieving this feat when he was just 22. He has since gone on to play for multiple teams but continues to be remembered as one of the most exciting players in NBA history. His impressive résumé earns him a net worth of $115 million.
Dwight Howard Net Worth – $115 Million
Dwight Howard is an eight-time All-Star who began playing basketball at age 13. He has been a dominant force on the court and is regarded as one of the best defensive players in NBA history. As a result, he has amassed a personal net worth of $115 million.
Dwyane Wade Net Worth – $115 Million
Dwyane Wade is an NBA icon who was instrumental in leading the Miami Heat to three championships. He was named Finals MVP in 2006 following his stellar performance against Dallas and continues to be remembered for his incredible talent and skill. His career accomplishments have earned him a net worth of $115 million.
Ranking the Richest Professional Athletes in the World
NBA players make so much money compared to other sports because basketball is one of the most popular sports in the world. It has a huge global fan base, which means there is lots of interest in the sport and lots of opportunities for NBA teams and players to generate revenue.
The NBA also has lucrative TV deals, allowing them to broadcast games to millions of viewers around the world. This brings in additional revenue for franchises and players alike. Additionally, many NBA teams have made agreements with sponsors that give the team a significant portion of their profits from merchandise sales like jerseys or shoes featuring their favorite player’s name or logo.
Also, NBA stars are often considered celebrities due to their impressive skills and abilities. This means they have a larger following than other athletes, allowing them to bring in additional revenue through endorsement deals with major brands. Many of these endorsement deals pay substantially more than what other sports leagues offer their star athletes.