Despite only fighting once in 2020, and losing that fight for that matter, Conor McGregor has been named Forbes’ highest-paid athlete ahead of the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Lewis Hamilton.
The majority of his revenue has come from ventures beyond the Octagon, which includes an array of endorsement deals.
According to Forbes, McGregor made a total of $180 million in 2020. He most notably made around $150 million from his sale of whiskey brand Proper No. Twelve.
In addition to that, McGregor has quite the roster in terms of product endorsements. Last year, McGregor added Draft Kings, the video game Dystopia: Contest of Heroes and media and lifestyle brand Roots of Fight to his portfolio.
In a recent interview, the Irishman had stated that he aimed to be top of the list and even spoke about the possibility of buying Celtic and Manchester United, his two childhood football teams.
While he may have made some controversial decisions in the past, his business ventures have taken him a long way and McGregor has developed a personal brand that will continue to pay dividends in the long run.
In order to qualify for Forbes’ list, an athlete must have competed at least once within the ranking period. Off-field earnings are calculated by reaching out to industry insiders, who will estimate how much an athlete has made from sponsorship deals and more.
Cristiano Ronaldo takes the last spot on the podium, as he finished last year with $120 million.
Forbes’ Top 10 Richest Athletes
1. Conor McGregor – $180 million
2. Lionel Messi – $130 million
3. Cristiano Ronaldo – $120 million
4. Dak Prescott – $107.5 million
5. LeBron James – $96.5 million
6. Neymar – $95 million
7. Roger Federer – $90 million
8. Lewis Hamilton – $82 million
9. Tom Brady – $76 million
10. Kevin Durant – $75 million