NBA officials are often under the microscope, especially from fans. They get blamed on almost a nightly basis by fans who think that they missed calls or got some calls wrong during a game. Being a referee in the NBA, subjected to abuse and criticism from fans and players, is not by any means an easy job.
With so much negative criticism from fans, analysts, and players, one might ask the question; why do people want to be referees in the NBA? Well, one of the reasons might be because of how well it pays.
According to research done, NBA referees reportedly earn anywhere between $150,000 to $550,000 in a year. That much money would make taking the regular criticism from fans a lot easier.
The base salary for an entry-level official in the NBA has been estimated to be a number of different values, ranging from anywhere between $150,000 to $250,000 a year. An entry-level official reportedly earns close to $600 dollars a game, and referees are given perks like travel stipends, insurance, and retirement benefits.
As for senior, experienced referees in the NBA, they can earn up to $550,000 in a year. On top of that, officials can reportedly earn even more money during the playoffs, with Career Explorer Guide noting that referee salaries can go increase by $30,000 per game during the NBA Finals.
Referees have been consistently bashed by fans, especially in more recent years, for how lenient they have been with awarding fouls. All that is set to change this season, as Stephen Curry and Elijah Bryant found out the hard way.
But despite this change, referees will always be subjected to criticism. Because of their roles as arbitrators of the game, fans will blame them for any contentious decision that goes against them, labeling them as biased, or even incapable of doing their job.
While these referees may still be criticized as time goes on, at least it is good to know that they are handsomely compensated for their work.