Friday, July 23, 2010

An Embarrassment of Riches

Earlier this week Sports Illustrated released the 2010 Fortunate 50, a list of the top 50 North American athletes ranked by total earnings (both salary and endorsements). The Fortunate 50 is an annual article for Sports Illustrated and one of my personal favorites as seeing how much athletes actually make is always fascinating.

For instance a number of high caliber football players make less than $100,000 from endorsements. Crazy when you see that Tiger Woods managed to make $70 million from endorsements in 2010 despite all his negative media attention and lost sponsors.

My favorite thing about the Fortunate 50 is reviewing the list and seeing just how many undeserving athletes are on it and laughing at the teams that paid them their outrageous contracts. Here are just a few of the most undeserving people on the list. Keep in mind everyone of these men named are one of the 50 richest athletes in North America.

All #s are the number they ranked out of 50 on the list:

#6 Shaq
Salary - $21,000,000
Endorsements - $15,000,000

Shaquille O'Neal is the 6th richest athlete in America. Isn't that crazy? How long has it been since he was relevant in the NBA? 4 years maybe? Last year Shaq averaged 21 points per game while bringing down an average of 6.7 rebounds. He also weighed close to 500lbs and challenged CC Sabathia for 'most rolls of of rear neck fat on a professional athlete.' He played no role in Cleveland's success and couldn't help bring a championship to Cleveland. Yet he brought in a cool $36 million. It just ain't right.

Fun Fact: In terms of total salary Shaq is the NBAs all-time leader having earned more than $290 million throughout his career.

#11 Matthew Stafford
Salary - $26,900,000
Endorsements - $750,000

What does $26 million buy you in the NFL? 13 touchdowns, 20 interceptions, a quarterback rating of 61.0 (only points ahead of Jake Delhomme and JaMarcus Russell), and 2 wins. I understand he was a rookie and that he plays for the Detroit Lions but making him the 11th richest athlete before he had even thrown a pass is ridiculous. No wonder the Lions haven't been to the playoffs since Lincoln was in office.

#15 Kevin Garnett
Salary - $16,417,044
Endorsements - $10,000,000

The Big Ticket is no longer the player he once was but he still gets paid like he is the Defensive Player of the Year and not a hobbled old man who can`t hit open jumpshots and couldn`t defend a highschooler. He still managed to put up some decent stats last year but that is due solely to Rajon Rondo and teams playing slack defense on him because he is old. If you actually watched the Celtics games last year, especially in the playoffs, you saw an old man struggling with his mortality.

#16 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Salary - $4,097,190
Endorsements - $22,000,000

Guess how many races Dale Earnhardt Jr won last year. Did you guess 0? If you did then you are correct. Now guess how many races he won the year before. Did you guess 0 again? Well correct you are. Since 2004 Junior has won a total of 3 races. How retarded is that? In 6 years he has won 3 races and yet he earned more than $26 million last year. Who is paying this loser to endorse their product? Why not get somebody with talent that isn't living off the accomplishments of their father.

#19 Terrell Suggs
Salary - $24,900,000
Endorsements - $75,000

The guy isn't even the best linebacker on his team. He is the 5th highest paid player in the NFL behind only Peyton and Eli Manning, Philip Rivers and Stafford. I like Terrell Suggs. I think he is a solid player, despite only getting 4.5 sacks last year and 59 tackles. Do I think he is worth his contract? I am sure no one but Suggs, his entourage and his baby mama thinks he is.

#22 Jermaine O'Neal
Salary - $23,016,000
Endorsements - $250,000

How does a corpse collect a paycheck? I was under the impression JO had died some time ago and that someone was pulling an elaborate Weekend at Bernie's move. O'Neal was the 2nd highest paid player in the NBA last year. Out of all the great players in the NBA only 1 person made more money than Jermain O'Neal. Go ahead and try and process that without hurting your brain.

Fun fact: The Boston Celtics just signed O'Neal to a 2-year $20 million deal. Take a moment and laugh at any Celtics fans who may be near you.

#24 Tracy McGrady
Salary - $22,483,124
Endorsements - $250,000

Say hello to the 3rd highest paid player in the NBA. Last year McGrady set new career lows in every single offensive category you can think of. He will never make it out of the first round of the playoffs and he deserves none of the money he made last year. Notice a pattern forming of crappy athletes with big salaries but no endorsements deals (except Earnhardt Jr)?

#28 Darrius Heyward-Bey
Salary - $21,430,000
Endorsements - $75,000

One of my favorite running jokes last NFL season: Darrius Heyward-Bey has more names than touchdowns. Its funny because its true. He hauled in only 1 touchdown last year which is actually impressive considering he only caught 9 passes. $21 million for 9 catches. Al Davis you are a mad man. 8th highest paid player in the NFL by the way. Chris Hudson my sympathies.

#30 Vernon Wells
Salary - $21,000,000
Endorsements - $250,000

His contract has crippled the Blue Jays since the day it was signed and will continue to do so until the day it expires. He is having a decent season this year (19 HR, 51 RBI, .272 AVG) but he has never come close to earing his historic contract and never will.

#31 Vince Carter
Salary - $16,123,250
Endorsements - $5,000,000

How much do you need to pay a guy to choke in the playoffs? If you're the Orlando Magic the answer is $16 million. Carter did exactly what everyone expected him to do last year in the Eastern Conference Finals when he bricked back to back freethrows late in Game 5. The guy is a loser and a quitter and watching him fail year after year has brought me endless joy ever since he left Toronto.

#39 Barry Zito
Salary - $18,500,000
Endorsements - $100,000

I once had a 90 minute long conversation with a friend about whether the owner of the San Fransisco Giants could get away with hiring someone to murder Barry Zito. After we established that he probably would get away with it we started debating how he should do it and how even if he got caught he would be praised by every single Giants fan on the planet.

#40 DeAngelo Hall
Salary - $18,500,000
Endorsements - $75,000

At one time Hall was thought to be the next great corner. Then he left Atlanta and the comfort of a dome for Oakland and was discovered to be a fraud. He is still a serviceable corner in the NFL and has had a bit of a rebirth in Washington but the fact that he is making $18 million is indefensible.

Random YouTube Video

No comments: