What Are The Highest Paid Sports In The World?

The Highest Paying Sports In The World
The Highest Paying Sports In The World

In this blog post, you will find every detail about the highest paid sports in the world, including the estimated annual salaries and net worth.

Sports are often seen as a form of relaxation and entertainment. Many people enjoy sports for the thrills and excitement they provide and the attachment they may have to certain types of sports.

 However, considering the popularity and fast-rising growth of the sporting industry, sports has become a high-paying industry, especially for Professional players.

Sports professionals earn swell salaries and a reputable level of fame through their hard work and engagement in sports.

Sports professionals’ earnings vary not only according to their skill and expertise but also according to their sports careers. That is to say; some sports careers are more lucrative than others. In this article, we will consider the top-paying sports in the world.

See Also: 10 Highest Paid Sport in 2023 | Best Paying Sports in the World

What Makes Sports so Profitable?

One of the most consistent and dominant industries is the sports industry. While other trends have come and gone, the sport has remained. Suffice it to say that sports have captured the hearts of many.

As a result of the massive attention, sports get advertisers’ and brands’ attention and help promote their presence. And who wouldn’t love to put themselves where many audiences would get to see them? 

Aside from deals and advertisements, which account for a large portion of the sporting industry’s revenue, sponsorship and licensing agreements are another way for the industry to profit.

For instance, brands could approach teams of their choice and offer to become official providers of their wear, and the sports league or team, in return, would give other companies the right to sell items that represent their team.

Standard Chartered, for example, pays Liverpool FC an estimated $55 million per year for jersey sponsorship.

In essence, sports teams would always find a way to monetize their labeled or sponsored assets.

Sales of tickets, media broadcasting, and subscription deals are also ways the sporting industry earns revenue. Media broadcasting and subscription deals exist because many sports lovers and enthusiasts would likely subscribe to broadcasting channels through which they could catch their favorite sports leagues live.

What are the Estimated Annual Salaries of Sports Professionals?

As mentioned before, sports remain one of the most consistent and lucrative industries. However, hammering out the estimated salaries of sports professionals is still essential. Engaging in this discussion would help inform the choices of potential or aspiring sports professionals.

First, it is essential to note that ever since the sporting industry started trending the most (around 2004), salaries for sports professionals have increased by an average of 10.3 percent.

A sports professional earns an average of $94,740 per year. And depending on the level of skill and expertise of the sports professional, the annual salary could get higher.

Also Read: What Sport Pays the Most | Top 10 Highest Paid Professional Sports in the World

What is the most Profitable Career in the Sporting Industry?

Aspiring sports professionals can easily choose from many careers in the sporting industry. These careers range from being a sportsperson who directly engages in sporting activities (e.g., a footballer or a basketball player) to being a league coach or referee.

While there are many factors to consider when pointing to a sports career as profitable, it is still safe to say basketball is the most profitable career at the moment.

Regardless of this pick, it is still important to note that a basketball career would not work for everybody, especially if the aspiring sports professional does not meet the requirements for being a basketball player.

What are the Top 10 Highest Paid Sports in the World?

In terms of profitability and the amount of money earned by the sports professionals who engage in them, the following are the top 10 highest paid sports in the World:

1. Basketball:

Ranking first on the list of the top highest paying sports in the world, basketball remains the highest paying sport. Basketball is most popular in the USA and Canada and was first played in 1891. And the National Basketball Association remains the highest paying basketball league and the most popular worldwide.

The highest paid NBA player earned an annual estimate of $343 million, and the richest basketball player, Michael Jordan, is said to be worth over $2 billion.

2. Boxing:

This is the world’s second-highest-paying sport. Boxing players make money from tournaments, endorsements, and commissions. The highest paid boxer earned $333 million for just one match, and the richest boxer in the world, Floyd Mayweather, is said to be worth an estimated $450 million.

3. Football:

Football ranks third among the top ten highest paying sports in the world. The highest paid footballer, Roger Staubach, earned an annual salary of $253 million. Football players make money through leagues and earn from the contracts popular sports brands make with some of them.

Read More: Soccer Field: History, Pitch Dimensions, and Rules of Soccer

4. Golf:

Ranking fourth on the list, golf is one of the hardest sports that, however, pays its players well. The highest paid golfer is said to have earned a whooping $127 million in a year. The richest golfer, Tiger Woods, is said to be worth an estimated $800 million.

5. Soccer:

With more than four billion soccer lovers and enthusiasts all over the world and one of the most loved and popular sports across the globe, soccer ranks as the fifth highest paying sport in the world.

It is the most played sport in the world, with the largest community and industry. The highest paid footballer was said to have earned $126 million. Cristiano Ronaldo is the richest soccer player and the first billionaire the football community would produce in the world. He is said to have a net worth of over $1 billion.

6. Tennis:

With more than one million fans all around the globe, tennis ranks as the sixth highest-paying sport in the world. The most popular tournaments in Tennis are the French Open, the Grand slams, and the US Open. 

It is interesting and beautiful to see that this is one sport, apart from soccer and boxing, that includes women in its participation and even allows them to be included in the list of the highest-paid female sports professionals. The highest paid tennis player was said to have earned an estimated $106 million a year. And the wealthiest tennis player, Roger Federer, is said to have a net worth of $450 million.

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7. Ice Hockey:

Governed by the International Ice Hockey Federation, the Ice Hockey sport ranks seventh in the list of the highest paying sport in the world. The highest paid Ice Hockey player is said to earn an estimated $99 million a year, and Wayne Gretzky, the richest hockey player, is said to be worth $250 million.

8. Baseball:

First played in the eighteenth century and ranked the eighth highest paying sport around the globe, baseball boasts one of the biggest and most popular leagues – Major League Baseball (MLB) – around the world. The profitability of the baseball sport is further confirmed by featuring many baseball players in the Forbes List of richest sports Professionals. The richest baseball player, Alex Rodriguez, is worth $400 million.

9. Auto Racing:

One of the most dangerous yet interesting sports, auto racing brags the ninth highest paid sport in the world. The highest paid auto race driver earned $18 million, and Michael Schumacher, the richest player in the auto racing sport is worth $800 million, making him one of the richest sports professionals in the world, thanks to auto racing.

10. Cycling:

Last on the list of the top 10 highest paid sports, but not least, cycling is one of the most famous and exciting sports around the globe. Lance Armstrong, the highest paid cyclist is said to have a total income worth $28 million, earning him 9th place in Forbes’ list of wealthiest players of 2010.  

Check More: 25 Highest Paying Jobs In California For 2023 (Updated)


 Is it advisable for me to venture into sports?

Now, this is dependent on you as a person. If you are a sports lover with enough passion for fueling you to start and maintain a sports career, then you should feel free to venture into sports. Passion for sports is needed because each career has its ups and downs, and only passion will enable you to keep going even when you have a thousand reasons to give up.

What type of sports career should I consider if I want to venture into sports?

This is dependent on the type of sport you find yourself attracted to. Becoming a footballer, cyclist, or basketball player is easy if you are sure you like the sport. However, mere attraction to the sport is not enough. You must be sure you meet the requirements for the sport you choose. For instance, if you like basketball and aspire to become a basketball player, you must be tall.

Is being a sports professional worth the hype?

Being a sports professional is worth the hype. It earns you money and fame and enables you to live your dream (if you’ve ever dreamed of playing a sport and becoming a professional at it). And it is very beautiful to see people live their dreams and passion.


Currently, the sporting industry still boasts of being one of the most lucrative and profitable Industries in the world. 

Anyone with a passion for any sport can hone his skills and easily gain mastery of it if the needed hard work and patience are put in.

Not only do sports professionals or athletes make money through their salaries, but they also earn big through various endorsements and deals. And that is quite a good way to build one’s net worth.

All in all, a career in sports is worth every bit of it, not just for the fame and money it brings but also for the satisfaction, thrills, excitement, and fulfillment it brings.


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