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Money in professional sports – looking at US major sports leagues

In professional sports, there is a clear association with money. Sports celebrities in the most commercialized sports are profitable properties. This post gives you some insights into the revenue streams of professional athletes. Though, the probability that YOU will end up as one of the world’s most money-spinning athletes is VERY LOW. Competition is fierce and it is the dream of many young boys and girls in sports to become the very best. At the same time, there are many different factors, which MUST interact positively, when measuring the likelihood of whether or not a young athlete can go all the way and become among the best athletes in the world, e.g. talent, injury level, coaching & support, attitude etc.

Furthermore, the length of an athlete’s career is not long. Analyzing the major US sports leagues, see info graphic below, baseball presents the longest-lasting career and on average that number is just a little more than five years. According to numbers below, the above-mentioned fact does not mean that baseball is the most profitable sport for an athlete. In basketball, the average NBA player brings in a lifetime salary of $24.7 mio. but to put things in perspective that is far from what Michael Jordan made annually in his main period.

As you can see below, baseball is the sport with the highest probability of YOU going pro. Still, it is not easy. 10 % of collegiate baseball players turn pro but that is five times higher than the average for the other sports.


How to Make Money in Professional Sports - Infographic
Courtesy of: Sports Interaction




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