7 Athletes Who Make Insane Money Off Endorsement Deals

Endorsement deals are how the rich get richer, and no one has found the game to be more lucrative then these seven athletes.

LeBron James

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LeBron James

Sport: Basketball

Career Highlights: 3-time NBA champion, 4-time NBA MVP, 14-time NBA All-Star

Annual Endorsement Earnings: $52 million

When you're the best basketball player on the planet, you can command a hefty paycheck on the court.

James, who will play for the L.A. Lakers this season, brings home a bulky $33.5 million a year for playing basketball.

But off the court, James earns an annual King's ransom of $52 million from the likes of Nike, Coca-Cola, Kia and others.

James puts that money to work for him. In 2012, he invested $1 million in a small pizza chain. Six years later, Blaze Pizza has gone from two locations to 200, growing LeBron's investment exponentially.

In 2015, James became the second athlete to earn a lifetime contract from Nike (Michael Jordan was the first). The specifics of the contract are not known publicly, but it's rumored to be an 8-figure amount.

According to Sportcal data, James has earned at least $433 million from endorsement deals already in his career.

Like they say: It's good to be the king.

Photo Credit: Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images


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