Sports is something that excites everybody, regardless of age, gender, race, or any other disparity that exists among humans. Apart from the competitive and entertainment aspect of the sports, people and fans are always excited to know about earnings and finances of international athletes. In the past 100 years of international sports, the incomes of athletes have grown exponentially. This includes both on and off-field money. Here are the 25 richest athlete in the world of all-time as of August 2019.
25Lewis Hamilton (US$230 Million)
One of the biggest names in the world of motorsports, Lewis Hamilton, is the highest-paid F1 driver with an estimated earning of $489 million in his career. Hamilton races for Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport in F1 and is one of the most successful British drivers ever. He is a 5-time F1 World Champion and only the third individual to achieve the feat. According to the Rich List 2019 by Sunday Times, Lewis is estimated to be worth US$230 Million. Although the majority of this number is owing to his career winnings and salary, Lewis adds extra chips from endorsement deals with global brands like Puma, L’Oreal and Tommy Hilfiger.
24Dwayne Johnson (US$280 Million)
Dwayne ‘the rock’ Johnson is a former professional wrestler and is considered as one of the greatest professional wrestlers as he headlined the most bought pay-per-view wrestling event ever, the WrestleMania XXVIII. With his immense popularity in the world of wrestling, he featured in some of the most-watched WWE episodes ever. He is a two-time Intercontinental Champion, a five-time tag team champion, a ten-time world champion, a Royal Rumble champion and WWE’s sixth Triple Crown champion. Through his recent acting endeavours, the Rock remains the highest-paid actor in the world according to Forbes for 2018 and 2019. Over a 25-year career in wrestling and acting, his estimated net worth is US$280 Million.
23George Foreman (US$300 Million)
George Edward Foreman is a former American boxer nicknamed “Big George”. A 2-time world heavyweight champion and an Olympic gold medalist, Big George is definitely one of the greatest to ever enter the ring. He is also a minister, author, and entrepreneur. In fact, he is a very successful entrepreneur from the times when the term startup wasn’t even around. He is known for his marketing deal with the George Foreman Grill. With his visionary decision making, Big George has been a part of some of the biggest business ventures over the years. With an estimated net worth of US$300 Million, Foreman makes it to the 23rd in this list of richest athletes. Definitely not bad considering that he was on the verge of bankruptcy once during his comeback in boxing.
22Jack Nicklaus (US$320 Million)
Jack Nicklaus (the Golden Bear) is a former American professional golfer and widely considered as the greatest of all-time. The man has 115 professional wins in his career that started in the year 1961. A World Golf Hall of Fame inductee of 1974, Jack is a 73-time PGA tour champion and a 10-time winner of Champions Tour. In fact, the Golden Bear has won record 18 majors in his career. With an estimated net worth of US$320 Million, Jack Nicklaus stands 22nd in the list.
21Greg Norman (US$350 Million)
A former Australian professional golfer, Greg Norman is best known for staying on the No. 1 spot of the World Golf Rankings for a massive 331 weeks. Apart from being a sports icon, he is one of the richest men in the world through his winnings and entrepreneurial profits. GSH Investments, the Greg Norman Australian Prime, Greg Norman Estates wineries, and the Greg Norman Champions Golf Academy are some of the businesses Norman owns. The CEO and Chairman of Great White Shark Enterprises, the estimated net worth of Norman is US$350 Million.
20Alex Rodriguez (US$350 Million)
Alex Rodriguez is a retired American Baseball player who used to play in the Major League Baseball. In his 22 seasons in MLB, he played for the Seattle Mariners, Texas Rangers, and the New York Yankees. He has also partnered with global brands like Credit Suisse, Nike, Mercedes-Benz, and Rolex. In fact, he is still getting paid from the Rangers adding to his vast net worth of US$350 Million.
19Phil Mickelson (US$375 Million)
Phil Mickelson is one among the most accomplished golfers of all time. Over 25+ years as a professional golfer, Mickelson’s net worth is estimated to be US$375 Million. In 2018, Mickelson famously won a winner-take-all TV event against Woods for a $9 million purse. Apart from the career earnings, lucrative sponsorship deals added considerable amounts to this sum.
18Vinnie Johnson (US$400 Million)
Vinnie Johnson is a former professional basketball player who played in the National Basketball League. Johnson is the seventh overall pick, picked by The Seattle SuperSonics in the 1979 NBA Draft. He was traded to the Pistons in 1982 where he won two championships in the following decade. In his 13-year career, Johnson has 11,825 career points and 1000+ assists and rebounds to his name. Vinnie is the founder, Chairman and CEO of the Piston Automotive, one of the largest auto parts suppliers in America. Today Vinnie has an estimated net worth of US$400 Million.
17Lionel Messi (US$400 Million)
Lionel Messi is an Argentinian footballer or soccer player and arguably the greatest player in the modern football league. Known for his incredible dribbling and goal-scoring abilities, Messi has a ton of records to his name. Lionel Messi has an estimated net worth to the ups of US$400 Million. This comes from him ending up as a top 3 most paid athlete from last three years and a ton of endorsement deals.
16Shaquille O’Neal (US$400 Million)
Shaquille O’Neal is a former basketball player from America and arguably the most dominant player in the NBA ever. Apart from being an athlete, the 7-footer is also an entrepreneur and a television host along earning around US$60 million every year from various business endeavours and endorsements. Recently he joined the Board of Directors of Papa Johns and will receive $8.25 million in salary and stock over the next three years. He has made a fortune out of smart investing and working as an NBA analyst for the ESPN. His current net worth stands around US$400 Million.
15LeBron James (US$450 Million)
LeBron James is an American Basketball player, considered amongst the greatest NBA player of all-time. He has been at the pinnacle of the NBA both financially and performance-wise for more than a decade now. The 34-year-old Los Angeles Lakers forward is the highest-paid NBA player for the 5th consecutive year in 2019. King James has an estimated net worth of US$450 Million with the help of lucrative endorsement deals with Coca-Cola, Nike and Beats By Dre. The revenue from SpringHill Entertainment and the ROI from the Blaze Pizza company add up to massive contribution to the number.
Also read: Top 20 NBA players of all-time
14Cristiano Ronaldo (US$450 Million)
Cristiano Ronaldo is a Portugal professional footballer or soccer player who is considered by many as the best in the world and the greatest of all time. He currently plays as the captain for both the Italian team, Juventus, and the Portugal National team. One of the highest-paid athletes in the world with colossal career earnings and among the most significant endorsement deals, Ronaldo’s Net worth is estimated at around US$450 Million.
13Roger Federer (US$450 Million)
Widely regarded as the GOAT (greatest of all-time), Roger Federer is a Swiss Tennis player has a net worth of over US$450 Million. Recently, the 37-year-old became the oldest man to achieve the No. 1 ranking in 2018. The vast net worth is the product of a whopping US$124 Million prize money and US$86 Million off-court earnings from partners like Credit Suisse, Mercedes-Benz and Rolex.
12David Beckham (US$450 Million)
David Beckham is an English retired footballer who is widely considered the best of his time. Hailing from London, the Britisher played for Preston North End, Real Madrid, Tottenham Hotspurs, Manchester United, Milan, LA Galaxy, Paris Saint-Germain and the England national team over the years in his career. Apart from his on-field excellence, he has been a smart investor and a celebrity for brands. David Beckham has a net worth is US$450 Million owing to his huge endorsement deals, and multiple business endeavours.
11Eddie Jordan (US$475 Million)
Eddie Jordan is a former Irish motorsports racer and a business guru with a net worth of US$475 Million. Being the founder and owner of the famous Jordan Grand Prix, his majority of the fortune is the result of the same. Also, he is a lead F1 analyst for the BBC coverage.
10Kobe Bryant (US$500 Million)
One of the greatest Basketball players of all-time, Kobe Bryant played his entire career in the NBA representing the Los Angeles Lakers. In his 20-year career, he won 5 rings along with multiple awards and trophies. After retiring in 2016, Kobe’s entrepreneurial engagement took an exponential rise along with huge investments paying off at the right time. His net worth stands at around US$500 Million as of 2019.
9Floyd Mayweather (US$560 Million)
Floyd Mayweather is a former American professional boxer and the highest-paid athlete of all-time in a single year. After retiring from the game with an unbelievable 50-0 record in the ring, Mayweather made a comeback for just one fight and earned US$250 Million, fighting against the Conor McGregor. After adding this huge amount, Mayweather’s net worth is a whopping US$560 Million.
8Junior Bridgeman (US$600 Million)
Junior Bridgeman is a retired American professional Basketball player. The Los Angeles Lakers drafted him but immediately traded to the Milwaukee Bucks for Kareem Abdul Jabbar. After a 12-year career in the NBA, Bridgeman ended up scoring 11,517 points. Bridgeman made huge investments in franchises post his retirement from the league. 20 years later Junior owns 160 Wendy’s and 118 Chili’s restaurants around the country. Also, he is one of the board members of the PGA. From a retired player to highly successful fast-food entrepreneur, Junior has a net worth of US$600 Million.
7Magic Johnson (US$600 Million)
Earvin “Magic” Johnson Jr. is a former American professional Basketball player who played for the Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA. He was an crucial part of the showtime lakers and the Celtics Lakers rivalry in the 80s. He has been a champion on and off the court for the better part of his life. With wise investments and various business ventures, Magic Johnson’s net worth stands over US$600 Million.
6Roger Staubach (US$650 Mіllіоn)
Rоgеr Тhоmаѕ Ѕtаubасh (Rоdgеr thе Dоdgеr) іѕ а rеtіrеd Аmеrісаn fооtbаll рlауеr whо рlауеd as a quаrtеrbасk іn NFL. Apart from his career earnings playing in the NFL, he hаd ѕеvеrаl іnvеѕtmеntѕ including the one іn thе соmmеrсіаl rеаl еѕtаtе buѕіnеѕѕ. In 2008, ‘Тhе Ѕtаubасh Соmраnу’ was ѕоld for a giant US$613 mіllіоn. Тhis helped Roger make it to an nеt wоrth оf оvеr US$650 Mіllіоn in 10 years.
5Tiger Woods (US$800 Million)
Arguably the greatest golfer of all-time, Tiger Woods came back in 2018 with his first PGA Tour win after five years and captured the Tour Championship. The Masters in 2019 after a gap of 11 years was unbelievable amazing. Woods is the only athlete to top the Forbes list of highest-paid for 11 consecutive years, along with earning US$1.4 billion from sponsors. After all his controversial acts and penalties, Woods’ net worth is estimated as US$800 Million.
4Michael Schumacher (US$800 Million)
Michael Schumacher is a retired F1 racer and undoubtedly one of the most heard names in the world of sports. In his fantastic career, the F1 legend has 7 world championships along with his 91 wins. Schumacher is still worth a staggering US$800 Million, even after 4 year-long inactivities owing to his serious condition post the tragic accident in 2013 followed by a 6-month coma.
3Ion Tiriac (US$1.1 Billion)
Ion Tiriac (Brașov Bulldozer) is a former Romanian professional tennis and ice hockey player. That’s right, the man used to play 2 sports at the highest level. In fact, he has a grand slam title, the 1970 French Open in men’s doubles. Ion Tiriac is the president of the Romanian Tennis Federation and also owns a minority stake in Romanian insurance company Allianz-Tiriac. The Romanian business tycoon has several investments in real estate, auto dealerships and petroleum distribution. Along with all this, he has a museum in Romania showcasing his collection of high-end cars, including Jaguars, Rolls Royces and Ferraris. His networth is reported to be US$1.1 Billion.
2Michael Jordan (US$1.9 Billion)
Michael Jordan is a retired American professional Basketball player who is widely regarded as the greatest of all-time. He was the face of NBA in the 90s and is credited for globalising the game as well as the brank of Nike. In his 15-year long career in the NBA, he is 6-0 in the NBA Finals. Also winning the NBA Finals MVP in all the 6 Finals. Jordan is the majority (90%) owner of the Charlotte Hornets since 2010 with the franchise now valued at US$1.05 Billion. Even after 15 years since hanging his boots, Michael still has sponsorship deals with Hanes, Gatorade and Upper Deck. In addition to all this, the Jordan line of clothing and shoes has been on the rise ever since the first Air Jordan release in the late 80s. The current net worth of Michael Jordan is estimated to be US$1.9 Billion.
1Vince McMahon (US$3.2 Billion)
McMahon is a former announcer and professional wrestler in WWE. In his wrestling days, he used a gimmick by the ring name Mr McMahon. A two-time world champion, the WWF Champion in 1999 and the ECW World Champion in 2007, McMohan has some big-time achievements under his belt. In fact, he was the Royal Rumble winner in 1999. Also, he has some great victories against the former legends of the sport like The Undertaker, Ric Flair, Shawn Michaels and Triple H.
But this is not how McMohan tops this list of the richest athlete. He is the majority owner of WWE since overtaking the company from his father in 1982. WWE is listed in the NYSE and McMohan family owns more than 50% of the stocks. Apart from the WWE, he is the founder of Alpha Entertainment, the company that holds XFL (American Football League). Taking all this into account, Vince McMohan stands at the top of the list of richest athletes with a net worth of US$3.2 Billion.