McGregor and McIlroy climb Forbes rich list

McGregor McIlroy climb Forbes rich list
Conor McGregor. Photo by Joshua Dahl/Sportsfile

Two of Ireland’s biggest sporting stars drastically increased their earnings in the past year, as they climbed the list of the world’s highest-paid athletes in a report released by American business magazine Forbes.

Golfer Rory McIlroy has broken into the Top Ten in the world, after earning $50 million (£38.6m) in combined salaries, prize money and sponsorship, bolstered by multi-million deals with Nike and TaylorMade, between June 2016 and this month.

The 28-year-old jumped 11 places from 17th on last year’s list.

And one of the country’s most ‘notorious’ sports stars has also jumped up the earnings list dramatically, as UFC star Conor McGregor sees his star rise in the athletic arena.

The Dublin double-weight UFC champion is up 61 places to 24th, and is set to earn more in the year coming as reports swirl about his potential fight with bozer Floyd Mayweather.

Forbes gave the 28-year-old a projected annual earning of $34 million (£26.2m), which ties him with Real Madrid star Gareth Bale.

Bale’s teammate Christiano Ronaldo remains at the top of the list, with his projected earnings rising to $93 million (£71.8m) over the past year, up $5 million (£3.8m) from 2015/2016.

McGregor McIlroy climb Forbes rich list
Leading the list is International football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo

In second place is NBA star LeBron James, with earnings of £86.2 million (£66.6m), who overtakes Ronaldo’s long-time rival Lionel Messie.

The Barcelona maestro drops to third on the list, which features 11 different sports and 21 different nationalities.

Americans make up 63 places on the list, due to the mammoth salaries earned in American football, baseball and basketball.

Forbes say: “Earnings figures include all salaries and bonuses earned between June 1st 2016 and June 1st 2017. Endorsement incomes are an estimate of sponsorship deals, appearance fees and licensing income for the 12 months through June 1st based on conversations with dozens of industry insiders.

“The golfers’ income includes course design work. We do not deduct for taxes or agents’ fees, nor do we include investment income. Our list includes only athletes active in the last 12 months.”


The full list is as follows:

(Rank Name Pay Salary/Winnings Endorsements Sport)

#1 Cristiano Ronaldo $93 M $58 M $35 M Soccer
#2 LeBron James $86.2 M $31.2 M $55 M Basketball
#3 Lionel Messi $80 M $53 M $27 M Soccer
#4 Roger Federer $64 M $6 M $58 M Tennis
#5 Kevin Durant $60.6 M $26.6 M $34 M Basketball
#6 Andrew Luck $50 M $47 M $3 M Football
#6 Rory McIlroy $50 M $16 M $34 M Golf
#8 Stephen Curry $47.3 M $12.3 M $35 M Basketball
#9 James Harden $46.6 M $26.6 M $20 M Basketball
#10 Lewis Hamilton $46 M $38 M $8 M Auto Racing
#11 Drew Brees $45.3 M $31.3 M $14 M Football
#12 Phil Mickelson $43.5 M $3.5 M $40 M Golf
#13 Russell Westbrook $38.6 M $26.6 M $12 M Basketball
#14 Sebastian Vettel $38.5 M $38 M $500 K Auto Racing
#15 Damian Lillard $38.4 M $24.4 M $14 M Basketball
#16 Novak Djokovic $37.6 M $9.6 M $28 M Tennis
#17 Tiger Woods $37.1 M $107 K $37 M Golf
#18 Neymar $37 M $15 M $22 M Soccer
#19 Dwyane Wade $36.2 M $23.2 M $13 M Basketball
#20 Fernando Alonso $36 M $34 M $2 M Auto racing
#21 Jordan Spieth $34.5 M $5.5 M $29 M Golf
#22 Derrick Rose $34.3 M $21.3 M $13 M Basketball
#23 Usain Bolt $34.2 M $2.2 M $32 M Track
#24 Gareth Bale $34 M $23 M $11 M Soccer
#24 Conor McGregor $34 M $27 M $7 M Mixed Martial Arts
#26 Kei Nishikori $33.9 M $3.9 M $30 M Tennis
#27 Fletcher Cox $33.4 M $33.3 M $75 K Football
#28 Clayton Kershaw $33.3 M $32.5 M $800 K Baseball
#29 Carmelo Anthony $32.6 M $24.6 M $8 M Basketball
#30 Zlatan Ibrahimovic $32 M $27 M $5 M Soccer
#31 Antonio Brown $31.9 M $29.4 M $2.5 M Football
#32 Demar DeRozan $31.6 M $26.6 M $5 M Basketball
#33 Rafael Nadal $37.5 M $5.5 M $32 M Tennis
#34 Eric Berry $31.1 M $30.8 M $300 K Football
#35 Chris Paul $30.9 M $22.9 M $8 M Basketball
#36 David Price $30.6 M $30 M $550 K Baseball
#37 Miguel Cabrera $30.3 M $28.3 M $2 M Baseball
#38 Kyrie Irving $29.9 M $17.9 M $12 M Basketball
#39 Stephon Gilmore $29.3 M $29.1 M $200 K Football
#40 Andy Murray $28.8 M $14.8 M $14 M Tennis
#40 Justin Verlander $28.8 M $28.2 M $600 K Baseball
#42 Mike Conley $28.6 M $26.6 M $2 M Basketball
#43 Canelo Alvarez $26.5 M $25 M $1.5 M Boxing
#44 Anthony Davis $28.1 M $22.1 M $6 M Basketball
#44 Blake Griffin $28.1 M $20.1 M $8 M Basketball
#44 Al Horford $28.1 M $26.6 M $1.5 M Basketball
#44 Von Miller $28.1 M $25.1 M $3 M Football
#48 Dustin Johnson $27.6 M $16.6 M $11 M Golf
#49 Albert Pujols $27.3 M $25.3 M $2 M Baseball
#50 Dwight Howard $27.2 M $23.2 M $4 M Basketball
#51 Ryan Howard $27 M $26.7 M $300 K Baseball
#51 Serena Williams $27 M $8 M $19 M Tennis
#53 Robinson Cano $27.1 M $24.1 M $3 M Baseball
#54 Kevin Love $26.4 M $21.4 M $5 M Basketball
#55 Chris Bosh $26.3 M $23.8 M $2.5 M Basketball
#56 Cam Newton $26 M $13 M $13 M Football
#56 Dirk Nowitzki $26 M $25 M $1 M Basketball
#58 Paul George $25.8 M $18.3 M $7.5 M Basketball
#58 Felix Hernandez $25.8 M $25.3 M $500 K Baseball
#60 Jason Pierre-Paul $25.7 M $25.5 M $200 K Football
#61 CC Sabathia $25.6 M $25 M $600 K Baseball
#62 David DeCastro $25.1 M $25 M $75 K Football
#63 Eli Manning $25 M $18 M $7 M Football
#64 Buster Posey $24.6 M $20.6 M $4 M Baseball
#65 Prince Fielder $24.2 M $24 M $200 K Baseball
#66 Josh Hamilton $24.1 M $24 M $100 K Baseball
#67 Zack Greinke $24.1 M $24 M $50 K Baseball
#68 Harrison Barnes $23.9 M $22.4 M $1.5 M Basketball
#69 Joe Mauer $23.8 M $23 M $800 K Baseball
#70 Wayne Rooney $23.6 M $17.6 M $6 M Soccer
#71 Bradley Beal $23.3 M $22.1 M $1.2 M Basketball
#71 Luis Suarez $23.3 M $17.3 M $6 M Soccer
#73 Matt Kalil $23.2 M $23.1 M $75 K Football
#74 Andre Drummond $23.1 M $22.1 M $1 M Basketball
#75 Masahiro Tanaka $23 M $22 M $1 M Baseball
#76 Chandler Jones $22.9 M $22.8 M $100 K Football
#76 Chandler Parsons $22.9 M $22.1 M $750 K Basketball
#78 Cole Hamels $22.7 M $22.5 M $200 K Baseball
#78 Hassan Whiteside $22.7 M $22.2 M $500 K Basketball
#80 Sergio Agüero $22.6 M $14.6 M $8 M Soccer
#81 Muhammad Wilkerson $22.4 M $22 M $400 K Football
#82 Nick Perry $22.3 M $22.2 M $100 K Football
#82 Hanley Ramirez $22.3 M $22 M $300 K Baseball
#82 Justin Upton $22.3 M $22.1 M $200 K Baseball
#85 Marc Gasol $22.2 M $21.2 M $1 M Basketball
#85 DeAndre Jordan $22.2 M $21.2 M $1 M Basketball
#87 LaMarcus Aldridge $22.1 M $20.6 M $1.5 M Basketball
#87 Jose Reyes $22.1 M $22 M $100 K Baseball
#89 Anthony Joshua $22 M $18.5 M $3.5 M Boxing
#89 Virat Kohli $22 M $3 M $19 M Cricket
#91 James Rodriguez $21.9 M $14.9 M $7 M Soccer
#91 Klay Thompson $21.9 M $16.9 M $5 M Basketball
#93 Jimmie Johnson $21.8 M $16.8 M $5 M Auto Racing
#94 Jacoby Ellsbury $21.01 M $21.1 M $600 K Baseball
#94 Adrian Gonzalez $21.7 M $21.3 M $400 K Baseball
#94 Matt Kemp $21.7 M $21.2 M $500 K Baseball
#94 Brook Lopez $21.7 M $21.2 M $500 K Basketball
#98 Nicolas Batum $21.41 M $20.9 M $600 K Basketball
#98 Wladimir Klitschko $21.5 M $17.5 M $4 M Boxing
#100 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. $21.4 M $13.4 M $8 M Auto Racing

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