An athlete’s high flying career is expected to bring popularity for the game and sponsorships combined with other financial benefits for the individual athlete. Some star athletes have notoriously short career spans, and others, despite earning a great amount of money fall prey to bad investments, financial mismanagements, or overtly luxurious lifestyle – squandering their wealth on speeding cars, booze and multi-bedroom mansions on a beach. Here we present you the list of Top 10 Richest Athletes Who Went Broke.
Top 10 Richest Athletes Who Went Broke
Today we give you a glimpse into the top 10 richest athletes who went broke. Wannabe-rich-and-famous-players reading this, be cautious – you’ve been forewarned!
10. Dick Lane aka Night Train Lane
Estimated Earnings – $5 Million
Richard Dick Lane earned the nickname ‘Night Train’ after taking a night train instead of a plane because he feared flying. His nickname drew national attention and soon he found himself living the high life with tons of alcohol, three marriage and bad finance mismanagement.
Following some dig in real-estate and music industry and some overseas scam, Lane became penniless. In the end, he lived on $800 per month pension and died under the care of a man whom he had met on a golf course.
9. Marion Jones
Estimated Earnings – $7 million per year
Marion Lois Jones is a former American track and field athlete who during her heyday earned something between seventy to eighty thousand dollars plus another one million from endorsements and bonuses. In the Summer Olympics of 2000, Jones won 3 gold and 2 bronze medals. But later, the Olympic committee stripped-off the medal after they found Jones guilty. She faced charges for using steroids and also for her link with the BALCO scandal.
Her multi-million dollar endorsement deals were pulled back, she went into debt during the court trials, had to sell off properties and loose her million dollars worth house. She definitely deserves her place among the richest athletes who went broke.
8. John Arne Riise
Estimated Lifetime Earnings – over $20 million
Norwegian footballer John Arne Semundseth Riise has earned praises for his powerful shots and incredible stamina. At one point he was earning around $75,000 per week. But things soon escalated and Riise had to declare bankruptcy in 2007.
Reports have it that Riise has had differences in opinion with his financial advisor, over investments. He also received charges for his connection to a case of $4-million fraud.
7. Muhsin Muhammad
Estimated Lifetime Earnings – $20 million
Also known as Muhsin Muhammad II, is a former American football who had actually begun playing under peer pressure. Muhammad’s signature touchdown dance earned him the nickname ‘Moose’.
Wachovia Bank sued his music company, Baylo Entertainment after a few bad investments. Muhammad then had to put his home (which he boosts for being “the largest private aquarium in the Southwest”) on eBay for sale.
6. Latrell Sprewell
Estimated Lifetime Earnings – $50 million
Latrell Fontaine Sprewell is a former American basketball player who was accomplished and had a seemingly bright future ahead until in 1997 an incident changed everything. During a practice match, Sprewell choked his coach which led to a 68-match suspension.
Then in 2005, he refused an offer of $27 million and 3-year contract after which his career came to a halt. His financial woes only got worse. He had to ground his million dollar yacht, lose two of his homes and eventually his family.
5. Kenneth Anderson
Estimated Lifetime Earnings – $70 million
Kenneth Kenny Anderson is a former American basketball player who played professionally between 1991 and 2006. Anderson featured on the front page of the New York City sports section when he was 14. At 16, he attended the Archbishop Molloy High School – one of the best places in America for the players to build a prospective basketball career.
Today, besides Shaquille O’Neal and Jimmy Jackson, Kenneth Anderson is regarded as the greatest basketball players in the US. But despite having an incredible career, Anderson filed for bankruptcy in 2005.
4. George Best
Estimated Lifetime Earnings – $100 Million
Described as the “greatest player to ever pull on the green shirt of Northern Ireland”, Best was an Irish footballer who played for Manchester United and the Northern Ireland national team. Best’s talent and charisma made him popular and rich but soon his extravagant lifestyle leads to problems like alcoholism, controversies and bankruptcy.
He suffered alcohol abuse for the rest of his life. Best once confessed how he had ruined his career and lost his riches saying – “I spent a lot of money on booze, birds (women) and fast cars – the rest I just squandered.” He now holds his place among the richest athletes who went broke.
3. Scottie Maurice Pippen
Estimated Lifetime Earnings – $120 Million
Scottie Maurice Pippen is one of the top 10 richest athletes who went broke. Now retired, American basketball player Pippen is a six-time NBA champion from back when he played with the Chicago Bulls. Alongside Michael Jordan, Pippen also became a reason for making NBA popular around the world in the 90s.
Nickname ‘Pip’, he holds a number of records including, being the only player to win both the NBA title and an Olympic Gold medal in the same year, twice (in 1992 & 1996 respectively). Following a number of bad business deals and financial mismanagement, Pippen lost millions of dollars. He had to put his luxurious mansion on sale and hold a yard sale to raise money.
2. Michael Vick
Estimated Lifetime Earnings – More than $130 million
Speaking of richest athletes who went broke, Michael Dwayne Vick is an American footballer whose majestic performance on-field earned him popularity, endorsement and truckload of money. In 2007, Vick booked with charges of promoting, funding and operating dog-fighting ring in his property.
He was found guilty of being personally engaged in killing dogs who could not fight by hanging or drowning them. After pleading guilty Vick served in prison for twenty-one months. This hiatus in his career combined with the withdrawal of sponsorship and financial mismanagement made him bankrupt. Currently, he plays as a free agent.
1. Mike Tyson
Estimated Lifetime Earnings – $400 million
Mike Tyson is one of the richest athletes who went broke, otherwise known as Michael Gerard ‘Mike’ Tyson is the former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world from America. At 20 he made a name for himself by becoming the youngest boxer to win the WBC, WBA and IBF heavyweight titles. Tyson rose to stardom and became broke and bankrupt in 2003. Despite making millions of dollar each year, Tyson was a reckless spender.
In 2000, financial mismanagement leads him to fire everyone who was working with him and recruit new accountants. After a few years of financial struggle combined with lack of income, Tyson told himself “Wow, this is over.” The ‘Iron Mike’ retired in 2005.
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