List of largest sports contracts

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This is a list of the largest sports contracts. These figures include signing bonuses but exclude options, buyouts, and endorsement deals. This list does not reflect the highest annual salaries or career earnings, only the top 100 largest contracts and thus is limited to athletes in team sports and auto racing. Athletes in individual sports, such as golf, tennis, and boxing are not employed by a team and usually earn money primarily through event winnings. This list also does not necessarily reflect actual money collected by the athletes, since some contracts are eventually terminated (usually due to an athlete either retiring or invoking their opt-out clause).

Entries in this list also require an individual citation of the contract, so a number of the highest salaried athletes (according to Forbes) are not included as their contract details have not been officially confirmed, including Lionel Messi and Lewis Hamilton. This also skews the list towards sports with salary caps where salaries are therefore public knowledge and easy to cite.

The contract figures referenced below are presented at face value, and does not reflect potential pre or post-tax treatments. For example, contracts with European sports teams are typically quoted on a post-tax basis.

Largest sports contracts[edit]

Rank Player Team/Streaming Service Sport Length of contract Contract value (USD) Average per year (USD) Average per game/fight4 (USD) Ref[1]
01 Canelo Álvarez DAZN* Boxing 5 years (2018–2023) $365,000,000 $73,000,000 $33,181,818.18 [2]
02 Giancarlo Stanton Miami Marlins* Baseball 13 years (2014–2027) $325,000,000 $25,000,000 $154,320.99 [1]
03 Alex Rodriguez1R New York Yankees* Baseball 10 years (2008–2017) $275,000,000 $27,500,000 $169,753.09 [3]
04 Alex Rodriguez2R Texas Rangers* Baseball 10 years (2001–2010) $252,000,000 $25,200,000 $155,555.56 [4]
05 Miguel Cabrera Detroit Tigers Baseball 8 years (2016–2023) $247,000,000 $31,000,000 $191,358.02 [5]
06 (tie) Robinson Cano Seattle Mariners Baseball 10 years (2014–2023) $240,000,000 $24,000,000 $148,148.15 [6]
06 (tie) Albert Pujols Los Angeles Angels Baseball 10 years (2012–2021) $240,000,000 $24,000,000 $148,148.15 [7]
08 James Harden Houston Rockets Basketball 6 years (2017–2023) $228,000,000 $38,000,000 $463,414.64 [8]
09 Joey Votto Cincinnati Reds Baseball 10 years (2014–2024) $225,000,000 $22,500,000 $138,888.89 [9]
10 David Price Boston Red Sox Baseball 7 years (2016–2022) $217,000,000 $31,000,000 $191,358.02 [10]
11 Clayton Kershaw Los Angeles Dodgers Baseball 7 years (2014–2020) $215,000,000 $30,714,285 $186,120.37 [11]
12 Prince FielderInjury Detroit Tigers* Baseball 9 years (2012–2020) $214,000,000 $23,777,777 $146,776.40 [12]
13 Max Scherzer Washington Nationals Baseball 7 years (2015–2021) $210,000,000 $30,000,000 $185,185.19 [13]
14 Zack Greinke Arizona Diamondbacks Baseball 6 years (2016–2021) $206,500,000 $34,416,667 $212,448.56 [14]
15 Russell Westbrook 6 Oklahoma City Thunder Basketball 5 years (2018–2023) $205,000,000 $41,000,000 $491,000.00 [15]
16 Stephen Curry6 Golden State Warriors Basketball 5 years (2017–2022) $201,200,000 $40,200,000 $490,243.90 [16]
17 Derek JeterR New York Yankees* Baseball 10 years (2001–2010) $189,000,000 $18,900,000 $116,666.67 [17]
18 (tie) Joe Mauer Minnesota Twins Baseball 8 years (2011–2018) $184,000,000 $23,000,000 $141,975.31 [18]
18 (tie) Jason Heyward Chicago Cubs Baseball 8 years (2016–2023) $184,000,000 $23,000,000 $141,975.31 [19]
20 (tie) Mark TeixeiraR New York Yankees* Baseball 8 years (2009–2016) $180,000,000 $22,500,000 $138,888.89 [20]
20 (tie) Justin Verlander Detroit Tigers* Baseball 7 years (2013–2019) $180,000,000 $25,714,286 $158,730.16 [21]
22 (tie) Félix Hernández Seattle Mariners Baseball 7 years (2013–2019) $175,000,000 $25,000,000 $154,320.99 [22]
22 (tie) Stephen Strasburg Washington Nationals Baseball 7 years (2017–2023) $175,000,000 $25,000,000 $154,320.99 [23]
24 Blake Griffin6 Los Angeles Clippers* Basketball 5 years (2017–2022) $172,260,000 $34,452,000 $420,146.34 [24]
25 Buster Posey San Francisco Giants Baseball 9 years (2013–2021) $167,000,000 $18,555,556 $114,540.47 [25]
26 (tie) CC Sabathia New York Yankees Baseball 7 years (2009–2015) $161,000,000 $23,000,000 $141,975.31 [26]
26 (tie) Chris Davis Baltimore Orioles Baseball 7 years (2016–2022) $161,000,000 $23,000,000 $141,975.31 [27]
28 (tie) Matt Kemp Los Angeles Dodgers Baseball 8 years (2012–2019) $160,000,000 $20,000,000 $123,456.79 [28]
28 (tie) Manny RamírezR Boston Red Sox* Baseball 8 years (2001–2008) $160,000,000 $20,000,000 $123,456.79 [29]
30 Troy Tulowitzki Colorado Rockies* Baseball 10 years (2011–2020) $157,750,000 $15,775,000 $97,376.54 [30]
31 (tie) Masahiro Tanaka New York Yankees Baseball 7 years (2014–2020) $155,000,000 $22,141,857 $136,684.30 [31]
31 (tie) Jon Lester Chicago Cubs Baseball 6 years (2015–2020) $155,000,000 $25,833,333 $159,465.02 [32]
33 Adrián González Boston Red Sox* Baseball 7 years (2012–2018) $154,000,000 $22,000,000 $135,802.67 [33]
34 (tie) Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari Auto racing 3 years (2007–2009) $153,000,000 $51,000,000 $2,942,307.69 [34]
34 (tie) Jacoby Ellsbury New York Yankees Baseball 7 years (2014–2020) $153,000,000 $21,857,142 $134,920.64 [35]
36 Mike Conley Memphis Grizzlies Basketball 5 years (2016–2020) $152,605,576 $30,521,115 $372,208.72 [36]
37 Miguel Cabrera Detroit Tigers Baseball 8 years (2008–2015) $152,300,000 $19,037,500 $117,515.43 [37]
38 Todd HeltonR Colorado Rockies* Baseball 11 years (2001–2011) $151,500,000 $13,772,727 $85,016.83 [38]
39 Zack Greinke Los Angeles Dodgers* Baseball 6 years (2013–2019) $147,000,000 $24,500,000 $151,234.57 [39]
40 Gareth Bale Real Madrid C.F. Association football 6 years (2013–2019) $146,280,000 $24,380,000 $406,333.33 [40]
41 Mike Trout Los Angeles Angels Baseball 6 years (2015–2020) $144,500,000 $24,083,333 $148,662.55 [41]
42 Cole Hamels Philadelphia Phillies* Baseball 6 years (2013–2018) $144,000,000 $24,000,000 $148,148.15 [42]
43 Carl CrawfordR Boston Red Sox* Baseball 7 years (2011–2017) $142,000,000 $20,285,714 $125,220.46 [43]
44 Damian Lillard Portland Trail Blazers Basketball 5 years (2016–2021) $139,888,445 $27,977,689 $341,191.33 [44]
45 Andrew Luck Indianapolis Colts American football 6 years (2016–2021) $139,125,000 $23,187,500 $1,449,218.75 [45]
46 DeMar DeRozan Toronto Raptors Basketball 5 years (2016–2021) $139,000,000 $27,800,000 $339,024.39 [46]
47 David Wright New York Mets Baseball 8 years (2013–2020) $138,000,000 $17,250,000 $106,481.48 [47]
48 (tie) Johan SantanaR New York Mets* Baseball 6 years (2008–2013) $137,500,000 $22,916,667 $141,460.91 [48]
48 (tie) Jimmy Garoppolo San Francisco 49ers American football 5 years (2018–2022) $137,500,000 $27,500,000 $1,718,750.00 [49]
50 Kobe BryantR Los Angeles Lakers* Basketball 7 years (2004–2011) $136,400,000 $19,485,714 $237,630.66 [50]
51 Alfonso SorianoR Chicago Cubs* Baseball 8 years (2007–2014) $136,000,000 $17,000,000 $104,938.27 [51]
52 (tie) Freddie Freeman Atlanta Braves Baseball 8 years (2014–2021) $135,000,000 $16,875,000 $104,166.67 [52]
52 (tie) Matthew Stafford Detroit Lions American football 5 years (2018–2022) $135,000,000 $27,000,000 $1,687,500.00 [53]
54 Justin Upton Detroit Tigers Baseball 6 years (2016–2021) $132,750,000 $22,125,000 $136,574.07 [54]
55 Calvin JohnsonR Detroit Lions* American football 8 years (2007–2015) $132,000,000 $16,500,000 $1,031,250.00 [55]
56 (tie) Shin-Soo Choo Texas Rangers Baseball 7 years (2014–2020) $130,000,000 $18,571,428 $114,638.45 [56]
56 (tie) Michael Vick3 R Atlanta Falcons* American football 10 years (2005–2014) $130,000,000 $13,000,000 $812,500.00 [57]
58 (tie) Johnny Cueto San Francisco Giants Baseball 6 years (2016–2021) $130,000,000 $21,666,667 $133,744.86 [58]
58 (tie) Anthony Davis New Orleans Pelicans Basketball 5 years (2016–2021) $127,171,313 $25,434,262 $310,173.93 [59]
58 (tie) Andre Drummond Detroit Pistons Basketball 5 years (2016–2021) $127,171,313 $25,434,262 $310,173.93 [60]
58 (tie) Bradley Beal Washington Wizards Basketball 5 years (2016–2021) $127,171,313 $25,434,262 $310,173.93 [61]
62 Jay CutlerR Chicago Bears* American football 7 years (2014–2020) $126,700,000 $18,100,000 $1,131,250.00 [62]
63 Jermaine O'NealR Indiana Pacers* Basketball 7 years (2003–2010) $126,558,000 $18,079,714 $220,484.32 [63]
64 (tie) Kevin GarnettR Minnesota Timberwolves* Basketball 6 years (1999–2005) $126,000,000 $21,000,000 $256,097.56 [64]
64 (tie) Rashard LewisR Orlando Magic* Basketball 6 years (2007–2013) $126,000,000 $21,000,000 $256,097.56 [65]
64 (tie) Vernon WellsR Toronto Blue Jays* Baseball 7 years (2008–2014) $126,000,000 $18,000,000 $111,111.11 [66]
64 (tie) Barry ZitoR San Francisco Giants* Baseball 7 years (2007–2013) $126,000,000 $18,000,000 $111,111.11 [66]
64 (tie) Jayson WerthR Washington Nationals* Baseball 7 years (2011–2017) $126,000,000 $18,000,000 $111,111.11 [67]
64 (tie) Colin Kaepernick San Francisco 49ers* American football 6 years (2015–2020) $126,000,000 $21,000,000 $1,312,500.00 [68]
64 (tie) Jrue Holiday6 New Orleans Pelicans Basketball 5 years (2017–2022) $126,000,000 $25,200,000 $307,317.07 [69]
71 (tie) Ryan Howard Philadelphia Phillies* Baseball 5 years (2012–2016) $125,000,000 $25,000,000 $154,320.99 [70]
71 (tie) Josh Hamilton Los Angeles Angels* Baseball 5 years (2013–2017) $125,000,000 $25,000,000 $154,320.99 [71]
71 (tie) Derek Carr Oakland Raiders American football 5 years (2018–2022) $125,000,000 $25,000,000 $1,562,500.00 [72]
74 Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks* Basketball 5 years (2014–2019) $124,064,280 $24,812,856 $302,595.81 [73]
75 (tie) Michael SchumacherR Ferrari* Auto racing 4 years (1996–1999) $124,000,000 $31,000,000 $1,907,692.30 [74]
75 (tie) Alexander Ovechkin Washington Capitals Hockey 13 years (2008–2021) $124,000,000 $9,538,461 $116,322.70 [75]
77 Joe Johnson Atlanta Hawks* Basketball 6 years (2010–2017) $123,658,089 $20,609,681 $251,337.58 [76]
78 Chris WebberR Sacramento Kings* Basketball 7 years (2001–2007) $122,718,750 $17,531,250 $213,795.73 [77]
79 Tim DuncanR San Antonio Spurs* Basketball 7 years (2003–2010) $122,007,704 $17,429,672 $212,556.98 [78]
80 Mike HamptonR Colorado Rockies* Baseball 8 years (2001–2008) $121,000,000 $15,125,000 $93,364.20 [38]
81 Joe Flacco Baltimore Ravens American football 6 years (2013–2018) $120,600,000 $20,100,000 $1,256,250.00 [79]
82 (tie) Jason GiambiR New York Yankees* Baseball 7 years (2002–2008) $120,000,000 $17,142,857 $105,820.10 [80]
82 (tie) Elvis Andrus Texas Rangers Baseball 8 years (2015–2022) $120,000,000 $15,000,000 $92,592.59 [81]
82 (tie) Cliff LeeR Philadelphia Phillies* Baseball 5 years (2011–2015) $120,000,000 $24,000,000 $148,148.15 [82]
82 (tie) Shaquille O'NealR Los Angeles Lakers* Basketball 7 years (1996–2003) $120,000,000 $17,142,857 $209,059.23 [83]
82 (tie) Matt Holliday St. Louis Cardinals* Baseball 7 years (2010–2016) $120,000,000 $17,142,857 $105,820.10 [84]
82 (tie) Larry Fitzgerald Arizona Cardinals American football 8 years (2011–2018) $120,000,000 $15,000,000 $937,500.00 [85]
82 (tie) Nicolas Batum Charlotte Hornets Basketball 5 years (2016–2021) $120,000,000 $24,000,000 $292,682.93 [86]
89 Carson PalmerR Cincinnati Bengals* American football 9 years (2006–2014) $119,750,000 $13,305,555 $831,597.19 [87]
90 Carlos BeltránR New York Mets* Baseball 7 years (2005–2011) $119,000,000 $17,000,000 $104,938.27 [88]
91 James Harden Houston Rockets Basketball 4 years (2016–2020) $118,103,446 $29,525,861 $360,071.48 [89]
92 Chris Bosh Miami Heat Basketball 5 years (2014–2019) $118,000,000 $23,600,000 $287,804.88 [90]
93 Ken Griffey, Jr.R Cincinnati Reds* Baseball 9 years (2000–2008) $116,500,000 $12,944,444 $79,903.98 [38]
94 (tie) Donovan McNabbR Philadelphia Eagles* American football 12 years (2002–2013) $115,000,000 $9,583,333 $598,958.31 [91]
94 (tie) Andy Dalton Cincinnati Bengals American football 6 years (2015–2020) $115,000,000 $19,166,667 $1,197,916.67 [92]
96 Von Miller Denver Broncos American football 6 years (2016–2021) $114,500,000 $19,083,333 $1,192,708.33 [93]
97 Ndamukong Suh Miami Dolphins* American football 6 years (2015–2020) $114,000,000 $19,000,000 $1,187,500.00 [94]
98 Al Horford Boston Celtics Basketball 4 years (2016–2020) $113,326,228 $28,331,557 $345,506.79 [95]
99 (tie) Kevin Love Cleveland Cavaliers Basketball 5 years (2015–2020) $113,211,750 $22,642,350 $276,126.22 [96]
99 (tie) Marc Gasol Memphis Grizzlies Basketball 5 years (2015–2020) $113,211,750 $22,642,350 $276,126.22 [97]

1 – Rodriguez's 2014 salary was reduced to $2,868,853 due to his season-long suspension related to the Biogenesis baseball scandal[98]
2 – Rodriguez opted out of this contract after the 2007 season
3 – Vick's contract was terminated by the Atlanta Falcons after the 2006 season
4 – Based on regular season games only (excludes any playoff games), also in baseball, starting pitchers usually pitch every five games, resting during the interval between starts
6 – Exact contract figures will be available once the 2017–18 salary cap is set and contracts are officially signed
R – retired
Injury – While still technically under contract, injury has ended his career
* – no longer on team
‡ – entirety of contract salary not guaranteed

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  • Contracts in the NFL are often not guaranteed, meaning that players who retire, or who are cut, do not receive their contracted salaries after their release from the team.
  • NBA and NHL seasons span two calendar years.
  • Michael Vick was suspended by the NFL in 2007. The Atlanta Falcons were unsuccessful in a civil legal process to attempt to recoup $20 million of the $100 million in bonuses paid to Vick under terms of his contract extension.
  • During his contract years, Michael Schumacher had significantly higher annual earnings than the athletes on this list with larger total contracts. On top of his $31 million per year paid by the Ferrari team, which alone ranked as the highest annual earnings at the time, he also earned a significant amount more per year from race winnings.
  • David Beckham signed a five-year deal with MLS soccer team Los Angeles Galaxy that was worth a reported $251 million,[99] but that figure included commercial endorsements; only $5 million a year of that figure is salary from the club, while the rest will come via existing endorsements and profit sharing with the club.[100][101]
  • Lewis Hamilton signed a contract with McLaren Mercedes worth at least ₤70 million ($138 million USD) over 5 seasons (2008–2012). However, no official contract details have been released by the team.[102]
  • In 2010, the NHL rejected a 17-year, $102 million contract between the New Jersey Devils and Ilya Kovalchuk, saying that the contract was "a circumvention of the collective bargaining agreement." The later years of the contract would have paid Kovalchuk only $550,000 per year, which lowered the average value per year of the contract. (The NHL's salary cap is based on the average value per year.) [103]

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