LeBron James has made the most money in the history of the NBA and he will continue to add to that total next season. James will be entering his final season with the Los Angeles Lakers and will make about $44.4 million. It could be the highest amount of money he makes as he will turn 38 years old next season, but if his play continues to play at a high level, he could make right around that total after next year.
Some players are lucky to touch $1 million after turning 38 years old. We see players play on the veteran’s minimum when they join championship teams, especially if they are older veterans trying to win their first title. For James, this contract is hefty and he can afford quite a bit when you break it down.
Here is the contract breakdown for James for the 2022-23 season.
2022-23 Season: $44,474,988
This contract will place James among the highest-paid athletes in the league. James has already surpassed Kevin Garnett as the highest-earning player in the league’s history. This is going to help supplement that lead. Only Steph Curry, James Harden, John Wall, and Russell Westbrook will make more money than James.
Last year, James would have lived up to the contract had he not gotten hurt. He was on pace to become the league’s oldest scoring champion. Now, the Lakers must figure out what to do with the other big contract they have because it looks like it could boil down to the team paying James and Westbrook a combined $90 million next season.
Per Game: $542,377
When you break it down, James is going to make about half a million dollars for each game he plays. Given what he averaged last year, he could make a good argument that he needs more. James remains a polarizing figure and that brings in people. Some patrons pay money to watch the Lakers because he is on the team.
That is why the Lakers didn’t hurt too bad in ticket sales despite winning only 33 games. The team was not a good product, but when you have a player like LeBron, people will still come. That is certainly worth the cost per game.
Per Quarter: $135,594
Per quarter, James could buy a new house in a rural area. If he wanted to get away during the offseason to the midwest, he could afford four middle-class homes. Maybe, get a cabin in the woods to get the true privacy that he probably desires.
The amount of money per quarter is a full-time job for some. Like other big superstars, he could play one quarter and still make a ton of money to get him by for a while. However, James is a top player in this league that doesn’t want to lose, so nobody has to worry about that.
Per Minute: $11,299
James does not talk a lot about officiating, but if he did, he would be able to pay that fine in a matter of five minutes. When you think about how money plays out in that period, it makes you wonder if it is worth saying anything. That is why it is interesting to see superstars pay the fines of other players because the math checks out that those superstars make big bucks in a matter of minutes.
James could buy out a supermarket in 10 minutes of action. Maybe, he could buy a family member a nice house in a matter of 20 minutes. Either way, the dollar-per-minute ration certainly favors the King.
Per Second: $188
James is known as a daily wine drinker. In a matter of one second, he could buy any bottle of wine he wanted at some stores. With that said, he is probably high rolling and buying some of the more prestigious bottles. How much do they cost? That remains unknown.
What we do know is that he can afford it. He can afford it in a matter of seconds. Based on the quality, the more seconds he has to play. We already saw the math after 60 seconds. What would you afford if you were in his shoes?
By the end of next season, James will become the first player to ever make more than $400 million in his lifetime for playing basketball. Currently, he has made over $387 million and that is without the $44 million given to him next year. If you combine the money he made in endorsement deals, merchandise, and his media business, his total career earnings have surpassed the $1 billion mark.
Is anybody surprised by the amount of money he has made? When you are a star, the biggest in his case, you are drawn to all types of opportunities. James has certainly cashed in on those opportunities. The question will be what he invests his money into after he is done playing basketball.