LeBron James, a rare billionaire in the sports world

Although he has not finished his basketball career in the NBA, LeBron James has had many investments outside of his personal assets, helping him soon become a billionaire before retiring. This is the difference between LeBron and his senior Michael Jordan as this superstar only joined the billion-dollar rich group after officially leaving the football field. Forbes estimates that the Los Angeles Lakers star’s net worth was $1 billion while he was still on the court, while M. Jordan didn’t own it until 11 years after returning home. assets of 1.7 billion USD.

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LeBron James has many investments right before the end of his NBA career. AFP photo

Also according to Forbes’ estimates, last year alone James earned 121.2 million USD, a figure slightly lower than Lionel Messi’s when this soccer superstar earned 130 million USD in 12 months, and James sees that. is also an important milestone in your career. Despite earning nearly $400 million in salary during his NBA career with the Lakers, Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat, James’ earnings off the court are just as good as off the court. At the age of 37, he has earned more than $900 million from investments and businesses, including $725 million from the SpringHill entertainment group he owns.

James’s SpringHill has produced television shows such as The Shop, a documentary about female tennis player Naomi Osaka or the film production Space Jam: A New Legacy in which he played the main role. LeBron also owns a 1% stake in Fenway Sports Group, the owner of teams like Liverpool FC and Boston Red Sox, and recently he also spent money to acquire the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins hockey team. Not only that, James also bought 10% of Blaze Pizza’s shares for less than $1 million in 2012 and has now made a big profit when the value of this pizza brand is now $30 million.

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LeBron James is under contract with the Lakers until the end of the 2022-23 season, after which he will become a free agent. AFP photo

The under-40-year-old’s real estate portfolio is estimated to be worth $80 million, including a $10 million building in his hometown of Akron, Ohio, and two private properties in Los Angeles with total price of 60 million dollars. As the son of a single mother, James put together a significant amount of money to transfer back to his hometown to invest in opening schools, housing planning and a community center to support poor families with many children.

LeBron James becomes first active NBA player to become a billionaire

Counting his achievements on the field, LeBron James has won four NBA championships, was named MVP (Most Valuable Player) of the tournament four times, and was selected into the 18 All -Star and won two Olympic gold medals. Recently, new billionaire LeBron James also expressed his desire to own an NBA team in the potential market of Las Vegas, with the ambition of establishing an NBA franchise in this “Sin City”.

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LeBron James is the first NBA player to become a billionaire while still playing. Photo Getty Images

At the age of 37, although he has begun experimenting with professional team ownership, James is still under contract with the Lakers until the 2022-23 season and has not yet become a free agent. In March 2021, James became part owner of the Boston Red Sox of Major League Baseball after he joined as a partner Fenway Sports Group (FSG), the owner of the Club. English Premier League club Liverpool.

The American basketball league NBA has not expanded since increasing from 29 to 30 teams with the addition of the Charlotte Bobcats name in 2004. The most recent team to join this playground is the Minnesota Timberwolves, although not for long but still managed to earn 1.5 billion USD in 2021. However, during the recent annual tournament press conference, NBA commissioner Adam Silver revealed there are currently no plans for expansion. So this will probably be another potential resource for a business-minded LeBron to exploit when he is no longer on the field, that is, to become the owner of an NBA team.

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