LeBron Makes Bank

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LeBron James just signed a two-year, $97.1 million guaranteed contract extension with the L.A. Lakers. This makes him the highest-earning player in NBA history… and the first player to surpass half a billion dollars in career earnings.

He’s an 18-time All Star, and a 4-time NBA champion and MVP, so just how valuable are his minutes on the court ?

Wealthie does the math on this mega-contract:

Each NBA team plays 82 games per season. (This doesn’t include playoff games. Those cost extra. And, in 19 years of play, Lebron’s only missed the playoffs 4 times.)

82 games in a season, means LeBron will now earn… about $592 000 per game. Alright, alright, alright!

And with 48 minutes in a game… King James is racking up $12 333 per minute.

Per second?! LeBron’s sweeping $205.55 into his piggybank every second he’s on the court.

But that’s just the beginning. Because LeBron can make it rain even harder. He’s a business owner, a celebrated philanthropist, and an investor. He’s smart about his money. So, let’s say he takes some of this new money, invests it in the S&P 500, and then doesn’t touch it for 20 years.

Let’s do that math.

Historically, the S&P 500’s averaged an annual return of 7.3%. Looking at this return, here’s how LeBron’s minutes of play might stack up:

  • One minute of play, invested: $12,333 → $50,473
  • One full game, invested: $592,000 → $2.4MM
  • LeBron’s full contract, invested: $97.1MM → $397.4MM

Hey, we can’t all be LeBron. Or Serena. Or Warren… Buffett. But we can make our money work the same way theirs does.

We’re gonna take a $12 333 minute to think about it!