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Mayweather Tops Sports Illustrated’s List of 50 Richest Athletes in 2013

97371980JJ006_FLOYD_MAYWEATFor the second consecutive year, welterweight boxer Floyd Mayweather topped Sports Illustrated’s annual list of the 50 richest athletes in professional sports. Last year, Mayweather took over the top spot from Tiger Woods, who had held the spot every year since Sports Illustrated began compiling the list in 2004. From just two fights this year and one upcoming fight in September, Mayweather will make at least $90 million in 2013 alone, with the potential to earn up to $128 million.

Rounding out the top five spots respectively is LeBron James ($56.5 million), Drew Brees ($47.8 million), Kobe Bryant ($46.9 million) and Tiger Woods ($40.8 million). Last year, Brees wasn’t even on the list. However, a $37 million signing bonus from his new contract propelled him to the No. 3 spot on the list this year.

The list is ranked based on the total amount of money an athlete earned from salary/winnings and endorsements. Some athletes, like Tiger Woods, make the majority of their money not based on their performance, but from endorsements instead. So far in 2013, Woods has won just under $8 million for his performance on the golf course. The rest of his earnings comes from $33 million in endorsements.

Not surprising is the fact that exactly half of the list is compiled of baseball players, with Alex Rodriguez topping the list, earning $29.9 million, with just $900,000 coming through endorsements from Nike, Vita Coco and Rawlings. The list is filled with baseball players due to the absence of a salary cap in Major League Baseball, allowing for mega contracts.

You can see the full list of the 50 richest athletes in professional sports here.

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