To make the list of top 100 highest paid athletes, you have to match No. 100 James Harden's $18.8 million.
Floyd Mayweather has fulfilled a dream, one that most Americans probably also have.
He got his nine-figure payday.
Because of the $100 million he earned for his May 2 fight with Manny Pacquiao, he not only fulfilled that personal dream, he jumped to the top of Forbes Magazine’s 100 most highly paid athletes list. Mayweather’s cumulative earnings are at $420 million, and he is due to fight again in 2015 to add to his total.
Mayweather’s group gets 60 percent of the cut on the fight with Pacquiao, and the total take is expected to go to $600 million by the time all of the pay-per-view and sponsorship money is accumulated.
This is the third year in the last four that Mayweather has been atop the Forbes list, but his $300 million total for 2015 is well above the previous high of $115 million in 2008.
Forbes is kind enough to point out that with his $300 million take for 2015, Mayweather would only rank 14th on a list of the top hedge fund managers of 2014.
Pacquiao earned $160 million in the same time period as Mayweather and ranks second on Forbes’ list.
For its list, Forbes includes all salaries, prize money and bonuses paid out between June 1, 2014 and June 1, 2015. Endorsement incomes are an estimate of sponsorship deals, appearance fees and licensing fees for the 12 months through June 1 based on information provided by industry insiders. Taxes and agents’ fees are not deducted, and investment income is not included.
The top 100 athletes made $3.2 billion combined in the 2015 period, up 17 percent from the 2014 total. At number 100 is Houston Rockets guard James Harden, with income of $18.8 million.
The top 100 includes 33 new names, and the highest paid of those is Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who got a $31 million bonus with his new contract. While 14 of the top 25 are non-Americans, the list is dominated by athletes form the United States, with 62 of the 100 being American-born.
Soccer stars Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid and Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona rank third and fourth on the list. Tennis star Roger Federer is fifth, and LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers of the NBA is sixth.
Only two women make the list, both of them tennis players. Maria Sharapova ranks 26th with earnings of $29.7 million, while Serena Williams is No. 47 with earnings of $24.6 million.
The entire list can be seen here:
Kent McDill is a staff writer for Millionaire Corner. McDill spent 30 years as a sports writer, working for United Press International and the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. From 1988-1999, he covered the Chicago Bulls for the Daily Herald, traveling with them every day through the nine-month season. He also covered the Bulls for UPI from 1985-88, and currently covers the team for www.nba.com. He has written two books on the Bulls, including the new title “100 Things Bulls Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die’, published by Triumph Books. In August 2013, his new book “100 Things Bears Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die” gets published.
In 2008, he resigned from the Herald and became a freelance writer. The Herald hired him to write business features and speeches for the Daily Herald Business Conferences and Awards presentations.
McDill also writes a monthly parenting column for the Herald’s Suburban Parent magazine.
McDill is the father of four children, and an active fan of soccer, Jimmy Buffett and all things Disney.