For the last year elite sport has been heavily impacted by the coronavirus, with many major events canceled or postponed, though there are still plenty of athletes earning big bucks.
The top earner for 2021 was Conor McGregor, with earnings totaling 180 million US dollars, much more than last year's number one, Roger Federer, who has dropped to seventh. It may not be a fair comparison, as the majority of McGregor's earnings came from the sale of his whiskey brand, not from his sporting performances. It is McGregor's second appearance in the top-ten list, he was 4th in 2018.
Below is the top-10 of the highest earning sportspeople for 2021, taken from the annual list of highest-paid athletes published by Forbes magazine in June 2021. This year, only the top 50 was published instead of the usual top 100.
The earnings totals (in US dollars) are derived from salaries, bonuses, prize money, appearance fees, licensing and endorsement income in the 12 months from May 1, 2020 to May 1, 2021. Taxes or agents' fees are not factored into the figures. See also the Forbes top-earning lists from other years.
Top-10 Highest Earning Sports people from 2021
|Rank||Name||Sport||Nationality||Earnings ($ million)||Previous Year|
|4||Dak Prescott||American Football||USA||107.5||>100|
|9||Tom Brady||American Football||USA||76||21|
Next on the list were: Steven Curry, Naomi Osaka, Tiger Woods, Russell Westbrook, Patrick Mahomes, James Harden, David Bakhtiari, Ronnie Stanley, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Dustin Johnson.
Highest Ranked For Each Sport in 2021
The highest ranked athlete from each sport is listed below. This year 8 different sports were represented on the list.
|Overall Rank||Name||Sport||earning ($ million)|
|4||Dak Prescott||American Football||107.5|
|8||Lewis Hamilton||Auto Racing||82|
source: The top50 list was published on the Forbes website in May 2021.
- See the top earning lists from other years.
- Top paid women for 2021
- Sporting highlights for 2021
- Other world sport lists