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Who are the highest-paid NBA players?
The highest-paid NBA player is currently Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry, whose contract is worth $43m for the 2020-21 season.
This is the fourth year of a five-year, $201m contract that Curry signed with the Warriors in 2017. In the 2021-22 season, the last year of Curry’s deal, he will earn $45.8m in base salary.
The joint-second highest-paid player is the Houston Rockets’ Russell Westbrook, who will earn $41.4m this season. Westbrook’s contract has two years left to run. He’ll earn $44m next season and has a player option worth $47.1m for the 2022-23 season.
Next on the list is Chris Paul of the Phoenix Suns, who is tied with Westbrook on $41.4m for this season. Paul has a player option worth $44.2m for next season, which is the last year of his contract.
The joint-fourth highest paid player is John Wall. The Washington Wizards point guard will make $41.3m this season and has three years remaining on his deal.
Wall will earn $44.3m next season and has a 2022-23 player option for $47.4m.
Level with Wall is the Rockets’ James Harden, who will also earn $41.3m this season. Like Wall, Harden will make $44.3m next season and $47.4m if he picks up a 2022-23 player option.
Who are the highest-paid NBA players ever?
The current top five in NBA salaries are also the five highest-paid players in the history of the league.
Prior to the 2019-20 season, no player had ever earned $40m in a single season. Curry became the first player in history to eclipse $40m in base salary, earning $40.2m last season.
The first player to ever earn $30m in a single season was Michael Jordan. Jordan signed a one-year contract with the Chicago Bulls in 1996 that paid him $30.1m for the 1996-97 season.
The contract paid Jordan the most a player had ever received for a single season by a huge margin.
The second-highest paid player in the 1996-97 season was Horace Grant of the Orlando Magic, who earned $14.9m – less than half of Jordan’s salary.
A year later, Jordan signed another record-setting deal worth $33m for the 1997-98 season, his last with the Bulls.
The second-highest paid player that year was Patrick Ewing, who made $20.5m.
Adjusting for inflation, Jordan’s $33m deal would be worth $53.5m in today’s NBA.
Which NBA players have earned the most money?
LeBron James has made the most money through contracts of any NBA players. In 17 seasons, James has earned $306.9m while playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers.
Chris Paul is second with $258.6m in career earnings. Paul has amassed that amount in 16 seasons.
Third is Carmelo Anthony, who has made $248.8m in 20 seasons.
Dwight Howard is fourth with career earnings of $239.9m from 18 seasons, and fifth is Kevin Durant with $225.4m from 13 seasons.
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