Kemba Walker, Gordon Hayward Among World’s Highest-Paid Athletes In 2020


Jun 3, 2020

Forbes’ list of the 2020’s highest-paid athletes is out, and a couple of Boston athletes made the cut.

Boston Celtics stars Kemba Walker and Gordon Hayward are tied with Miami Heat’s Jimmy Butler and pro golfer Jordan Spieth at No. 52 on the list. The four are expected to make $27.6 million apiece, though Spieth makes most of his off endorsements.

Tennis legend Roger Federer is the highest-paid athlete for the first time with an estimated $106.7 million income in 2020. International soccer stars Cristiano Ronaldo ($105 million), Lionel Messi ($104 million) and Neymar ($95.5 million) are second, third and fourth, respectively.

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James ($88.2 million) rounds out the top five, with Steph Curry ($74.4 million) and Kevin Durant ($63.9 million) landing in sixth and seventh. Pro golfer Tiger Woods ($62.3 million) and NFL stars Kirk Cousins ($60.5 million) and Carson Wentz ($59.1 million) complete the top 10.

Naomi Osaka is the first woman on the list at No. 29 with $37.4 million, with Serena Williams coming in at No. 33 with $36 million. Other notable athletes include MMA superstar Conor McGregor (No. 16 — $48 million), Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (No. 21 — $45 million) Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah (No. 34 — $35.1 million) and New Orleans Pelicans rookie Zion Williamson (No. 57 — $27.3 million).

Thanks to COVID-19, the top 100 highest-paid athletes will make a combined $3.6 billion in 2020, down nine percent from 2019. Baseball has taken the biggest hit, dropping from $468 million between 15 players in 2019 to $27 million for just one player in 2020. (That player is Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw, who sits at No. 57 on the list with $27.3 million.)

American football, however, has seen a spike in players enter the top 100 this year. There NFL is up from $773 million between 19 players in 2019 to $926 million between 31 players in 2020 — a 12-player, $153 million difference.

You can check out the full list here.

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