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Kevin Garnett has made more in NBA salary than anyone. Ever.

Aug 27, 2012, 1:53 PM EDT

Boston Celtics' Kevin Garnett calls out to his team mates as the Celtics take on the Milwaukee Bucks during the second half of a NBA basketball game in Milwaukee, Wisconsin Reuters

Kevin Garnett took a pay cut to come back to the Boston Celtics this year. It’s three years, $34 million. We’d all like a pay cut like that.

But it was still enough — with his new contract Kevin Garnett passes Shaquille O’Neal as highest career earner in NBA history.

WarriorsWorld tweeted out a new list updated with current NBA contracts, and here is the top 10:

1. Kevin Garnett $328,562,398
2. Shaquille O’Neal $292, 198, 327
3. Kobe Bryant $279,738,062
4. Tim Duncan $224,709,155
5. Dirk Nowitzki $204,063,985
6. Joe Johnson $198,647,490
7. Jason Kidd $193,855,468
8. Ray Allen $181,127,360
9. Chris Webber $178,230,218
10. Paul Pierce $169,486,218

If you rolled your eyes at those guys, at least they care all great players, but No. 12 on the list is Jermaine O’Neal. LeBron is 24th, but he has a couple big contracts ahead of him.

What about Michael Jordan? He’s 87th at $90 million. But his endorsement money (to this day) would vault him way, way up the list.

  1. anotheryx - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:01 PM

    I was gonna make a note on Joe Johnson, but I just got too depressed.

    • Zammael - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:10 PM

      Nets fan?

      If you’re an Atlanta Hawks fan, then you should no longer be depressed – Johnson is long gone.

    • cosanostra71 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:40 PM

      Joe Johnson. 6th highest paid player…. ever.

  2. tcclark - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:09 PM

    This is news until Kobe’s contract runs up…

    • bougin89 - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:57 PM

      I can see Kobe taking a pay cut after his current deal is up but still signing a 3 yr 60ish million which would put him on top of this list. It would be interesting if they could formulate a calculation for how much Kobe has earned for the Lakers. If he’s made the Lakers 600 million(or whatever the number may be). I know quite a while ago an article was written on MJ’s billion dollar effect on the economy.

  3. acharlot5 - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:12 PM

    wow.. almost half a billion dollars… INCREDIBLE!! better not hear any stories of him going broke after being retired for a couple years

    • b7p19 - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:27 PM

      Pretty loose definition of “almost half a billion dollars. He’s not even at a third of a billion. In fact, If Paul Pierce gave KG his total career earnings he STILL wouldn’t be at a half a billion. I get what you’re saying though. It’s a $hit ton of money.

    • genericcommenter - Aug 27, 2012 at 8:27 PM

      Supposedly he has a pretty awesome retirement plan set up.

    • badintent - Aug 28, 2012 at 2:58 AM

      Stay tune, always a 50/50 chance with NBA brothers.Last I read, over 50 % of players broke within 5 year after career ends.Go to Pawn Stars, you can buy their hocked chains !!Guess they didn’t get the memo from Hakeen about buying Denny’s restuarants.He owns over 100 with his brother. Or Junior Bridgeman, he owns over 100 Wendy’s places.

  4. joshvanklomp - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    He can thank Glen Taylor and Kevin McHale for that…

    • paleihe - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:20 PM

      Or, they can thank him for making people watch Minnesota basketball again.

      • raidmagic - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:50 PM

        or he can thank himself for working his ass off and earning it. Like him or not he is probably the hardest
        working guy in the NBA.

  5. Mr. Jones - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    Reblogged this on Sports w/ KJ.

    • florida727 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:00 PM

      Just curious… why would anyone want to RE-blog anything? If we want to comment on this story, wouldn’t we just post a comment on HERE? Stop being a blog whore. Advertise like most people with a new business would instead of trying to ride on PBT’s coattails.

    • cosanostra71 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:42 PM

      Thanks for the update Mr. Jones. Now I know to never go to your website.

  6. dls612 - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    9 out of 10 of them definitely deserved all the money they’ve earned!

    • florida727 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:01 PM

      No offense, but none of them “deserve” that kind of money, for what, stuffing a ball through a hole suspended 10′ off the ground? Not like these guys are curing cancer.

      • scalfor3 - Aug 27, 2012 at 5:24 PM

        you’re right, but you can’t fault them. its the public that makes pro sports such a lucrative business. the players do deserve a good chunk of the money that their games generate

      • deadeyedesign23 - Aug 27, 2012 at 11:05 PM

        They deserve that money because that’s the income they generate. If they don’t deserve it then neither do the team owner who charge you money to watch people “stuffing a ball through a hole suspended 10′ off the ground.”

        Frankly there are millions of people on Earth who think you don’t deserve the money for whatever job you do, which is surly not curing cancer. If anything their job impacts millions of more lives than yours or mine does. Count your own money.

  7. sageandjudahsdad - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    It’s an obscene amount of money and not a one of them deserved it for, PLAYING A GAME!!!

    • thestudiokida - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:39 PM

      I’d say they do deserve it because they each produced an obscene amount of revenue in jersey, ticket sales. Much more than they were paid. That’s how the market works.

    • dls612 - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:51 PM

      Try telling that to those players that came from a one parent house hold! Busting their butts just to make out those bad neighborhoods! Dealing with the pressure of wining and staying on top! It’s not all fun and games! It’s more to it then u think! Besides don’t be mad at them cause u chose to be a loser!

    • deadeyedesign23 - Aug 27, 2012 at 11:02 PM

      But owners deserve the money for charging ou to watch them play a game? Apparently you have to wear a suit to make money in the sports business.

      • jimeejohnson - Aug 30, 2012 at 1:26 PM

        Useful idiots for the rich and powerful love to ream themselves! It’s just their way.

  8. thestudiokida - Aug 27, 2012 at 2:36 PM

    Pretty loose definition of “has earned” since this actually predicts the future by including future revenue. What if he blows out a knee and retires or takes a buyout for some unforeseen reason? Tighten it up.

    • cosanostra71 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:44 PM

      NBA Contracts are fully guaranteed.

      • thestudiokida - Aug 27, 2012 at 4:48 PM

        Yeah except when one of those things happened that I just said.

  9. bougin89 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:03 PM

    I was surprised to see Jason Kidd on the list. Not that he doesn’t belong but just didn’t expect him to be.

    It is fitting that the top 5 represent all time greats.

  10. BigBeachBall - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:06 PM

    chicago = cheapskate

  11. michiganhockey11 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    That’s F*ing disgusting kind of money.

  12. dedalus13 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:32 PM

    I don’t get it.328.56 M$ minus 34 M$ is, according to my best guess, a little bit over 292.2 M$… Kurt could you please clarify the mess? thx in advance

    • raidmagic - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:53 PM

      What don’t you understand? It’s a guaranteed contract. That’s his money

      • hannsta - Aug 27, 2012 at 6:27 PM

        Of course it is but the math still doesnt work out.

        328,000,000
        – 34,000,000

      • hannsta - Aug 27, 2012 at 6:27 PM

        Of course it is but the math still doesnt work out.

        328,000,000
        – 34,000,000

      • hannsta - Aug 27, 2012 at 6:30 PM

        Of course it is, but the math still doesnt work out.

        328,000,000
        – 34,000,000
        _____________
        294,000,000

        Meaning he had allready made more than Shaq before he signed this contract. Clearly there is something missing, and he is wondering what it is.

      • hannsta - Aug 27, 2012 at 6:32 PM

        WTF it posted half my reply twice….terribly sorry ignore the first 2, or if there is someone paying attention to these posts plz delete them (including this one)…

    • raidmagic - Aug 27, 2012 at 7:33 PM

      Ahh I get what you’re getting at, I didn’t understand your point earlier my bad.
      My best guess is Kurt sucks at math. Lol

      I couldn’t reply to your reply below so I put it here

  13. nickbrezzy - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:40 PM

    Lmao I never understood why ppl get mad when they hear about players that get paid so much I mean it’s not your money damn lmao

  14. passerby23 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:42 PM

    Am I the only one who is shocked that the greatest player of all-time is 87th of the list of all-time earners? Or, is inflation not adjusted with these figures? $10 million in the 80s is a lot bigger than $10 million today.

    • Kurt Helin - Aug 28, 2012 at 5:21 AM

      They are not inflation adjusted. What is more, MJ was underpaid for most of his career, but his endorsement dollars let him get away with that.

  15. spillzberg - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:53 PM

    The people trying to cure cancer don’t have 20,000 people watching them cure cancer or buying t shirts with their names in them….they generate that type of money which is why they are paid that way….people say they don’t deserve it but nobody gets paid based on the importance of their job, the market determines your value financially even if what u do is “more important” to society as a whole it doesn’t produce the revenue of professions like sports do…..if there was a blog about curing cancer(there probably is) would it get as much traffic as a sports blog like this?…..doubt it!

  16. rilla77 - Aug 27, 2012 at 3:56 PM

    That’s tight, I like that and it is well deserve too. If K had been a Celtic for life the Spurs would not have all them championship’s. KG is one of the best players that played the game and his sure love & passion for the game is why. I hear people say he is a coward he talk to much s–t , and he ain’t got to play like that to be great. This is what KG do (love) his teammates number one priority .(Passion) He plays ever game like it’s his last one. (Advantage) KG has a old school game by mouth that’s how he played basketball when he was a kid and he didn’t change his ways. He know how to get in your head without even touching you. If that ain’t greatness I don’t know what is .

  17. bbk1000 - Aug 27, 2012 at 4:07 PM

    Good stuff, and some fans (and players) say David Stern is against the players and all about the league……what a joke…

  18. tubal22 - Aug 27, 2012 at 4:30 PM

    KG should never whine about not having enough help in Minny to get a ring. He took all their money.

    It’s Minnesota’s fault for giving it to him, but by doing that, they handicapped themselves for the entire term of his contract.

    If he’s all about the money, good for him. When he whines about not having enough help or how crappy the franchise is, or how he couldn’t win a title with them, it’s on him.

    He said “It’s always special to come back to true fans… But as far as that franchise, I have nothing positive to say”. Why not? They gave you the biggest contract in the history of professional sports at the time. And you got past the 1st round once. Nice.

    • passerby23 - Aug 27, 2012 at 6:17 PM

      I don’t know, they had a pretty solid squad in ’04: Cassell, Sprewell, KG, Sczerbiak. If Cassell didn’t get injured, Minnesota maybe beats the Lakers and gets to the Finals. I don’t think the problem in Minnesota was ever KG’s bloated salary, but that they didn’t have the right pieces around him. Then, when Cassell and Sprewell left, it was rebuilding mode.

      From 1999-2005, KG signed for 6 years/$126 million (or $21 million per year). That’s about the same amount of money he’s made in Boston in where he won a ring and they are perennial contenders. So, why would his salary be the issue in Minnesota and not Boston?

  19. rajbais - Aug 27, 2012 at 4:33 PM

    “What about Michael Jordan? He’s 87th at $90 million.”

    Well, Jerry Reinsdorf is cheapskate idiot who kept Jerry Krause for too long!!!

    Now, look at what he’s doing with the current Bulls team!!! I’m ashamed that he’s a Chicago area owner and feel that no one profited off of more athletes’ backs than this guy!!!

    He is NO innovator like Jerry Buss and Mark Cuban!! He needed ready made drafts after stinking!!!

    All of his 6 championships should be in MJ’s house!!!

    Barkley’s right, “Michael was underpaid for his entire career!!”

    • borderline1988 - Aug 27, 2012 at 4:54 PM

      People didn’t make as much money in the early 1980s and 1990s. Obviously, Jordan in this day and age would be the highest paid player.

      Garnett got lucky with a couple of his big contracts signed just before changes in the CBA.

      • scalfor3 - Aug 27, 2012 at 5:28 PM

        true, but jordan was underpaid even for the time period and market he played in. he wasn’t even the highest paid player in the league until late in his bulls career

      • rajbais - Aug 28, 2012 at 12:27 AM

        You’re right, but an idiot like Reinsdorf ruins teams after they didn’t reach their peak.

        Chicago is allegedly a big city, but we act as if we live in markets that are smaller than Memphis and Sacramento.

        My God, he thinks we’re in Albuquerque!

  20. dadawg77 - Aug 27, 2012 at 5:55 PM

    This list may not change much sure to the cap on top salaries. But would like to see what a NPV list would look like.

  21. sellahh - Aug 27, 2012 at 5:55 PM

    MJ MIGHT be the best ever but KG is as intense as anyone so its all good if hes the one to make the most. You ppl saying its ridiculous money, look at urselves then look at KG. He’s a warrior, a battler, a guy who was pushing himself to new limits all the time. Now do you? Save for his trashtalking antics he’s a perfect example to set for yourself.

    • passerby23 - Aug 27, 2012 at 6:22 PM

      I have no problem with the money KG’s made, but to say he’s deserving of it because he’s intense is a bit misguided. Ruben Patterson was intense too, but he didn’t deserve $21 mil a year.

      Your points about what kind of guy and player he is are valid. He’s never been the kind of guy who takes his money and mails it in. That guy has always pushed himself and never makes excuses. And he’s certainly been a cornerstone to build a franchise around.

  22. Power Zone Sports - Aug 27, 2012 at 6:11 PM

    Reblogged this on Power Zone Sports and commented:
    What’s your thoughts? Weigh in on this discussion? Let me know what you think about KG and his BIG DOLLARS!!!

  23. lakerluver - Aug 27, 2012 at 6:48 PM

    Why are some of you guys crying about how much money they’ve made?! I never hear anyone say, “that new Tom Cruise movie stinks he didn’t deserve the 20 million he was paid”. If a film maker wants to give him 50 million I don’t care. Just like I don’t care if an NBA owner wants to give a player 300 million bucks. Is A. Rod worth the half a billion he’s made? Evidently he is.

  24. jjordannba - Aug 27, 2012 at 7:01 PM

    BIG BANK Take lil bank.

  25. jlsiberia - Aug 27, 2012 at 7:22 PM

    That’s what they got charging $17 for each shot of Patron at the bar below court level in the Target Center

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