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NBA Lockout: Top 10 Players Ranked by Off-Court Income

NBA players are well compensated in their profession. As we have seen in the past, they stack up quite well compared to other professional athletes.  However, only a small percentage of NBA players can boast of a material chunk of their earnings coming from off-court endeavors.

"James, Bryant, Wade and other players earning $5 million per year off the court are a slim minority, the top 2% or so of the NBA's 450 players. While the NBA's other 98% of players have relationships with Nike, Adidas or Reebok, in almost all cases it is matter of getting free gear and little or no cash changes hands."

10 Players Not Afraid of a Lockout | Forbes

I've extracted the names from the Forbes list along with Forbes' off-court income estimates and paired up those players with their respective expected salaries this year.

Player Off-Court ($M) On-Court ($M) Total ($M)
LeBron James $33.0 $16.0 $49.0
Kobe Bryant $28.0 $25.2 $53.2
Dwyane Wade $12.0 $15.5 $27.5
Dwight Howard $11.0 $17.9 $28.9
Kevin Durant $9.0 $13.6 $22.6
Carmelo Anthony $8.0 $18.5 $26.5
Amare Stoudemire $8.0 $18.2 $26.2
Chris Paul $6.0 $16.4 $22.4
Kevin Garnett $5.0 $21.2 $26.2
John Wall $5.0 $5.5 $10.5

Salary data provided by

What I find most interesting is the sharp drop-off from the NBA's current two icons - Kobe and LeBron - and Dwyane Wade. Despite being a globally recognized star in his own right, Wade's off-court income is drastically less. It goes to show that it pays to be the king, and in this game, there are only so many thrones to occupy.