5. LeBron James’ Net Worth
Whether it makes us sick to our stomachs or if it’s just curiosity, people are absolutely fascinated with a celebrity’s net worth. There are whole website based off it. In the most simplest of terms LeBron James makes his money two ways: on the court, and off the court.
On the court LeBron has made just over $126 million through his first 10 seasons in the NBA. His new contract with the Cavs was just signed for 2 years, $42.2 million. Unlike baseball players, who don’t have to worry about a salary cap, LeBron has consistent;y been said to be “underpaid.” As a member of the Miami Heat, he wasn’t even the highest paid player on the team. But don’t shed a tear over his contractual restraints just yet.
Off the court LeBron has made approximately $326 million from endorsements alone, according to CelebrityNetWorth.com. Since The Decision four years ago, LeBron has been doing his best to rehabilitate his image. In 2011 he was voted as one of the most hated athletes, according to Forbes. Now, as he has comes full circle by coming back to his hometown, he has also done so in the marketing world. Only four years and two rings later, it seems the public is beginning to forgive him, and endorsers are taking notice. Nike, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Microsoft, and State Farm all realized that the animosity towards LeBron was worth it. As did Samsung, Beats by Dre, Dunkin-Donuts, Baskin Robbins, and many more.
(numbers reported are before taxes and expenses)
4. The Cavilier’s Value As A Franchise
Forbes in January valued the Cavaliers at $515 million (19th in the league), now they are valued at over $1 billion. That number has skyrocketed due to many factors. The Cavs marketability will shoot up. Ticket sales, which will be discussed more in-depth later, have increased exponentially. TV contracts will also be monumental.
Last year the Cavs had one nationally televised game. You heard me correct. One. Now, they’ll most likely be the most watched team in the US. Everyone will clamor to see how LeBron does with a new cast of teammates, and you better believe the Cavs will be cashing in on that with local and national TV deals.
3. Fan Spending
Yahoo reports that based on calculations by the Cuyahoga County Fiscal Office there will be an additional $34 million in fan spending for the upcoming season. Where will that money come from? Think concessions, parking, restaurants, bars, and vendors of all kinds. This also means that with a dramatic increase in sales, there will be a need for more jobs.
Yahoo reported that 500 additional jobs will come in as a result of LeBron’s homecoming. By returning to Northeast Ohio, LeBron has almost single-handedly stimulated the economy.
1. Ticket Sales
Following the announcement Friday afternoon the Cavaliers sold out all 12,000 season ticket packages. They could’ve sold more packages, but decided to cap it there so that over 8,000 individual game tickets could be sold, according to ESPN’s Darren Rovell. The Q hasn’t seen those kinds of numbers since the King took his talents to South Beach in 2010.
Last season the Cavs were 16th in the league in average attendance; in 2010 they were 2nd only behind the big market Chicago Bulls. Percentage-wise that’s 84.3% capacity vs. 100% capacity in 2014 and 2010 respectively. Obviously those numbers will rise this coming season, and with that ticket sales will likely increase to where they were the last time LeBron donned the wine and navy colors of Cleveland.
During his last season with the Cav’s the average ticket price for a game was $55.95, according to Team Marketing Report. That’s a number that LeBron almost established himself- during his rookie year the average ticket price was $40.15. Last season, when the Cav’s went 33-49 and missed the playoffs, the average ticket price was $43.31.