Portland Trail Blazers: Lillard, McCollum in top 100 of highest paid athletes

Damian Lillard CJ McCollum Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Damian Lillard CJ McCollum Portland Trail Blazers (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /

Forbes compiles lists yearly of the world’s highest paid athletes. This year, Portland Trail Blazers CJ McCollum and Damian Lillard are both in the top 100.

Forbes list of the top 100 highest paid athletes in the world is always a fascinating read. This year, two Portland Trail Blazers feature in the top 100, Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum.

Comparing NBA players to other sports and seeing where they rank on and off the court is interesting, we all know how well players like Dame and LeBron James do off the court with endorsements. Their numbers are dwarfed this year though when it comes to the world’s highest-paid athletes in tennis star Roger Federer and football players Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

Swiss national Federer earnt a cool $106.3 million in the calendar year measured. Amazingly only $6.3 million was earnt on the court, with the other $100 million coming in endorsements.

NBA players have the most representatives on the list, making up 36 of the top 100 earners, with LeBron James ranked the highest at number five. James earnt $88.2 million in the calendar year.

Dame comes in at number 30, with calendar earnings of $37 million. This was made up of on-court earnings of $22.5 million, and then endorsements of $14.5 million.

Dame’s super-max extension doesn’t kick in till 2021/22, so he is ranked slightly lower than some of his All-Star peers. Off the court, he is one of only a select few NBA players with his own signature shoe via his reported ten-year deal with Adidas signed back in 2014. At the time this was believed to be the third-richest deal in the NBA.

Dame also has endorsement deals with Hulu, Spalding, Foot Locker and Powerade as well as having a successful music career with own record label – Front Page Music.

McCollum came in at number 84 on the list with calendar year earnings of $23.8 million, mostly due to the four-year max extension he signed with the Blazers in 2016.

Like Lillard, he also has a max extension that kicks in in the 2021/22 season. McCollum has a five-year shoe deal and signature shoe line with Chinese brand Li-Ning that he signed in 2017, and he had total off-court earnings of $3 million.

Both McCollum and Lillard will rise higher on these lists as their big-money NBA deals kick off in two years time, but both players have also done well marketing themselves off the court in the small market city of Portland.

Next. The best (and worst) clutch scorers in the analytics era. dark