Why NBA Players Should Shift Their Focus Off The Court

      Most small businesses in the United States generate less than $5,000,000 in revenue each year.  $5,012,892.00 represents the average salary of an NBA player in 2017 according to a Gazette Review article in March of 2017. http://gazettereview.com/2017/02/average-nba-salary-much-nba-players-make/     There are roughly 600 players in the whole NBA. This number includes the active roster, the NBA G-League (Former Development aka D-League), inactive and injured lists.  

     5 million dollars is a lot of money to generate in a year for any business, let alone an individual person/player. With the influx of tv money being poured into the NBA, salaries are rising, and NBA players are shifting their focus off the court.  They are pro-actively searching for ways to invest their money in new creative ways, generating a higher return on investment. 

     In today’s game, I view each player as the CEO of his own business/brand. Marketability on the court has led to business development opportunities outside of basketball. Gone are the “typical” sponsorship days.  While shoe and endorsement deals still exist, innovative companies are finding ways to leverage both player and company interest.  In some situations players are forming their own companies, using their player salary, endorsements, and shoe deals as capital to start these companies.

    As an example, Lebron James turned down a 14 million dollar endorsement deal with McDonalds, investing his OWN money (less than 1 million) into Blaze Pizza according to Bleacher Report http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2723589-lebron-james-less-than-1m-investment-in-blaze-pizza-reportedly-reaches-25mBlaze Pizza is one of the fastest growing fast food chains in the country. Lebron anticipates making at least 25 million dollars from his initial investment.

Blaze

Image Credit: Yahoo Finance/Blaze Pizza

Several other NBA stars and their business interests/ventures are included below.  While you will recognize the names,  similar opportunities are available for ALL NBA Players. Some of these opportunities might be on a smaller scale, depending on each individuals basketball prowess.

 

Lebron James:

    Uninterrupted: Uninterrupted is a multi-media site run by LeBron James. https://www.uninterrupted.com/

 

UN

Steph Curry:

Slyce : Steph Curry created his own social media start-up, which helps athletes manage their social media channels.

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/06/01/warriors-star-steph-curry-founded-start-up-slyce-to-shake-up-marketing.html

Slyce.jpg

           Photo Courtesy: Steph Curry

Kevin Durant

Venture Capitalist: Kevin is taking advantage of being Bay Area, investing in tech companies. 

https://www.fastcompany.com/40474598/kevin-durants-killer-crossover

 

Fast Company

       Fast Company Magazine Cover

 

Russell Westbrook

Fashion Designer: Russell loves fashion and created his own clothing line.

https://www.vogue.com/article/russell-westbrook-honor-the-gift-unisex-streetwear-oklahoma-city

Russell Westbrook.jpg

                   Photo Courtesy Honor The Gift

 

 

 

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