Sportico have released their list of highest-paid athletes in 2022.
Here, we list the top 30 sportspeople based on their salary and prize money, as well as their merchandise, appearances and licensing in off-field endorsements.
We previously listed the highest-paid athlete per major sport, but now let’s take a dive into what athlete as an individual, no matter what sport they are involved in, makes the top 30.
LeBron James — $126.9M
The LA Lakers player tops the list after finishing fifth last year. The American made $36.9M in salary/winnings and $90M in endorsements.
2. Lionel Messi — $122M
The first of four football players to make the list, Messi remains in second place from the previous year. Arguably the GOAT in the football world, the Argentine earned $72M in salary and winnings and $50M in endorsements.
3. Cristiano Ronaldo — $115M
4. Neymar — $103
Up two places on the previous year, the second-highest scoring Brazilian ever earned $65M in salary/earnings and $38M from endorsements.
5. Canelo Alvarez — $89M
The Mexican boxer breaks into the top 10 having placed 12th on last year’s list. He earned $84M in salary and winnings and $5M in endorsements.
6. Stephen Curry — 86.2M
Considered one of the greatest point guards ever, The Golden States player earned $41.2M in salary and earnings and $45M from endorsements. Curry rises from 10th to 6th.
7. Kevin Durant — $85.9M
A former teammate of Curry, Kevin Durant comes in two places higher than before. The Brooklyn Nets star earned $37.9M in salary/earnings and $48M in endorsements.
8. Roger Federer — $85.7M
One of tennis‘ GOATs, if not the GOAT. The classy Swiss is recovering from knee surgery and subsequently made $724k in salary and winnings, but he remains in the top 10 due to his whopping $85M in endorsements, second only to LeBron James in endorsements.
9. James Harden — $76M
The final NBA player to make the top 10, Harden made $40M in salary/earnings and $36M in endorsements. He previously placed 16th on the list.
10. Tiger Woods—$73.5M
11. Matthew Stafford — $73.3M
The highest placed NFL player climbs a huge 81 places. The LA Rams veteran quarterback made $70.3M in salary and earnings and $3M in endorsements.
12. Giannis Antetokounmpo — $71.9M
The “Greek Freak” made $35.9M in salary and earnings and $36M in endorsements.
13. Russel Westbrook — $69.8M
Nine-time NBA All-Star Westbrook made $39.8M in salary/earnings and $30M in endorsements.
14. Tyson Fury — $69M
The “Gypsy King” made $63M in salary and earnings and just $3M in endorsements due to his commendable refusal to endorse gambling and alcohol labels as they are high contributors to mental health issues.
15. Josh Allen — $66.5M
Allen of the Buffalo Bills made $62.5M in salary and earnings and $4M in endorsements.
16. Tom Brady — $58.4M
The greatest quarterback of all time made $18.4M in salary and $40M in endorsements.
17. Deshaun Watson — $56M
Completing the trio of consecutive NFL players to make the list is Watson. The Cleveland star made $55.5M in salary and $500K in endorsements — the lowest in the 30 for endorsements. He climbs 17 places on last year’s list.
18. Klay Thompson — $54.2M
The second Golden States Warrior makes the list, Thompson made $34.2M in salary and earnings and $20M in endorsements.
19. Lewis Hamilton — $54M
20. Naomi Osaka — $53.2M
The first Asian player to be ranked number one in tennis singles and highest-paid woman in the sporting world, Osaka made $1.2M in salary and earnings and $52M in her endorsements.
21. Aaron Rodgers — $53M
Another quarterback to make the list, Rodgers made $42M in salary and earnings and $11M in his endorsements.
22. Conor McGregor — $52M
Last year’s number one, McGregor made $32M in salary and earnings and $20M in endorsements.
23. Damian Lillard — $ 51.4M
The Portland Blazer star made $35.4M in salary and earnings and $16M in endorsements, climbing seven places in the process.
24. Mike Trout — $49.5M
The only MLB star to make the list. Trout made $35.5M in salary and earnings and $14M in endorsements. The LA Angels man climbs 50 places in the rankings.
25. Kylian Mbappe — $48.8M
The third of PSG’s incredible trio, Mbappe made $31.8M in salary and earnings and $17M in endorsements. With his contract due to end and plenty of suitors, expect Mbappe to significantly climb the rankings next year.
26. Patrick Mahomes — $48.6M
The Kansas City Chief made $28.6M in salary and earnings and $20M in his endorsements.
27. Kirk Cousins — $48.5M
Cousins of the Minnesota Vikings enters the rankings, having not placed previously. He made $46M in salary and earnings and $2.5M in endorsements.
28. Kyle Irving — $44.9M
Joining his teammate Kevin Durant on the list, Irving made $31.9M in salary and earnings and $13M in his endorsements. He drops from 13 on last year’s list.
29. Paul George — $44M
The LA Clippers star made $35.5M in his earnings and salary and $8.5M in his endorsements.
30. Gareth Bale — $43M
Joint last on the list is the enigma — Gareth Bale. He made $37M in salary and earnings and $6M in his endorsements. A great deal of money for someone who does not feature much for his club, the Welsh star will likely have enjoyed spending his fortune on golf equipment.
30. Max Verstappen— $43m
The F1 champion climbs 65 places in the rankings. The Dutchman earned $39M in salary and earnings and $4M in his endorsements.