For today’s professional athletes, while extracurricular activities ranging from legal investigations to affairs are rampant, their paychecks don’t seem to be suffering from it.
Sports Illustrated ranks the 50 top-earning professional athletes on the “Fortunate 50,” a list based on salary, winnings, endorsements and appearance fees. In this year’s list Tiger Woods demonstrates that an athlete’s crumbling private life does not necessarily affect his finances. Though he made $9 million less than last year, the controversial golfer held his spot at number one, earning $30 million more than the number two athlete, Phil Mickelson.
Basketball players fill 16 spots on SI’s list, the most of any pro sport, though 15 NFL players are also represented. The average salary of these 50 athletes is $26.2 million, up 11% from 2009.
Even with their upsetting love lives and messy labor negotiations, professional athletes don’t deserve much sympathy because they take their drama and their massive paychecks all the way to the bank.