What NBA Player Gets Paid the Most?

We all know that NBA players are some of the highest-paid athletes in the world. But have you ever wondered which player is actually the highest-paid?

Well, according to Forbes’ list of the highest-paid NBA players for the 2020-2021 season, that title goes to Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James.

So, there you have it! The next time you’re wondering who the highest-paid NBA player is, you can now give the correct answer

LeBron James

As of 2019, LeBron James is the NBA player who gets paid the most. He is currently in his fourth season with the Los Angeles Lakers, and he is set to make $38.2 million this year. In total, LeBron James has earned over $265 million in his NBA career.


In the 2019-2020 season, LeBron James will make $37.4 million in salary with the Los Angeles Lakers. This is the most money any NBA player will make in a single season. In total, James has made over $343 million in salary during his NBA career. He is currently signed to a four-year, $153.3 million contract with the Lakers that runs through the 2022-2023 season.


As of June 2020, LeBron James has earned a total of $447 million in salary from the NBA and an additional $480 million from endorsements, for a grand total of $927 million. That puts him ahead of Kevin Durant ($ 363M), Stephen Curry ($ 262M), and Kobe Bryant ($323M), who are all close behind James in terms of career earnings. Notably, James’ endorsement earnings make up a whopping 52% of his total career earnings.

So, what brands is LeBron James endorsement deals with? His most notable deals are with Nike (reportedly worth $1 billion), Coca-Cola (Sprite), Beats by Dre, Kia Motors, Intel, and Upper Deck. He also has investment stakes in several tech startups, including the wellness app Calm and the video streaming platform Uninterrupted. All told, these deals likely bring in tens of millions of dollars every year for James.

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant is an American professional basketball player for the Brooklyn Nets of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He played one season of college basketball for the University of Texas, and was selected as the second overall pick by the Seattle SuperSonics in the 2007 NBA draft. Durant won consecutive NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP) awards in 2014 and 2015, and was a member of the All-Star team eight times. He has also been named to eight All-NBA teams and nine NBA All-Defensive teams.


As of 2019, the highest-paid NBA player is Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard. He signed a five-year extension with the team in July worth $196.4 million, which works out to an average salary of $39.3 million per year.

Second on the list is Houston Rockets shooting guard Russell Westbrook, who signed a five-year extension with the team in 2017 worth $207 million. That works out to an average salary of $41.4 million per year.

Golden State Warriors small forward Kevin Durant comes in third on the list, with an annual salary of $30.7 million. Durant signed a two-year contract with the Warriors in 2018, which includes a player option for 2019-20.

The fourth highest-paid NBA player is Cleveland Cavaliers power forward/center Kevin Love, who makes $28.9 million per year. Love signed a four-year, $120 million extension with the Cavs in 2015 that runs through the 2018-19 season.

Rounding out the top five is Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Paul George, who will make $27.1 million during the 2018-19 season. George was traded to the Thunder from the Indiana Pacers in 2017 and is currently in the first year of a four-year, $137 million contract he signed with Oklahoma City that includes a player option for 2021-22.


In addition to his salary, Kevin Durant also earns a significant amount of money from endorsements. He has deals with Nike, Foot Locker, Panama Jack, 2K Sports, Beats by Dre, and Sprite. These deals are worth an estimated $36 million annually. Nike pays Durant $20 million per year to endorse their products. He has also appeared in commercials for Hummer and Sprint. In total, Durant’s endorsement deals are estimated to be worth $56 million. This puts his total earnings at $80 million per year.

Steph Curry

Steph Curry is the NBA player who gets paid the most. He is a shooting guard for the Golden State Warriors. As of September 2017, he is the highest-paid player in the NBA, earning more than $30 million per year in salary and endorsements.


Curry is currently in the fifth year of a five-year, $201 million contract he signed back in 2017. He will make $40.2 million in 2020-21 and has a player option for 2021-22 worth $42.3 million. Curry’s total earnings to date are an impressive $226 million.


In addition to his salary, Curry has earned more than $42 million in endorsements. He is currently signed with Under Armour, JPMorgan Chase, Nissan, SAP, Sony, and many others.

James Harden

James Harden, shooting guard for the Houston Rockets, is the NBA player that gets paid the most. As of the 2019-2020 season, his salary is $38.2 million. He is also set to make $47 million in 2020-2021 and $50 million in 2021-2022. In total, he is set to make over $285 million over the next four years.


In the 2018-19 season, Houston Rockets’ shooting guard James Harden will earn a base salary of $30.4 million, which is the highest in the NBA. He will also earn nearly $5 million in bonuses and collector’s fees. Harden’s total earnings for the season are $35.8 million.


In 2017, Forbes estimated that Harden had earned $47 million from endorsements. This is more than any other NBA player. The total value of his endorsements is currently unknown. However, it is safe to say that the majority of his earnings come from these deals.

Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook is an American professional basketball player for the Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He is a nine-time NBA All-Star, and an eight-time All-NBA Team member. He is also the 2017 NBA Most Valuable Player, and led the league in scoring that year. Westbrook has also been named to the All-Defensive Team six times. As of 2019, he is the NBA’s highest-paid player, earning an annual salary of $35.7 million.


Russell Westbrook is an American professional basketball player for the Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He is a nine-time NBA All-Star and earned the league’s Most Valuable Player Award for the 2016–17 season. He also holds the record for the most triple-doubles in an NBA season with 42.

In 2017, he signed a contract extension with the Thunder which made him the highest paid player in the NBA at that time, with an annual salary of $28.5 million.


In addition to Westbrook’s $35.7 million annual salary from the Oklahoma City Thunder, he reportedly brings in a staggering $28 million per year through sponsorship deals with companies like Nike, Foot Locker, and Mountain Dew. Westbrook’s contract with Nike is reportedly worth $15 million a year and is the most lucrativ​e deal ever signed by a Jordan Brand athlete. He also has an ongoing partnership with the Chinese company Li-Ning, which manufactures and sells sportswear and sporting goods.

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