Have you ever wondered how much your favorite NBA stars make in a year? Well let me tell you that they don’t just make a lot of money, they make tons of money.
For starters, There are 11 players who made at least $30M this season and there are 43 players who made at least $20M. What about $10M? There are 121 NBA players who made at least that much this season. A total of 379 players were paid at least $1M during the 2018-19 season. That’s very many millionaires playing basketball players playing against each other. So as Isaiah Thomas used to say, bring in the Brinks trucks.
Here are the highest paid NBA players for the 2018-19 NBA season.
1.Stephen Curry $37,454,154
The Golden State Warriors’ two-time MVP signed a mammoth five-year $201M deal in July 2017. It was the biggest ever NBA contract before James Harden’s $228M extension from the Houston Rockets later that summer topped it. But so what? Curry’s Warriors ousted Harden’s Rockets in Round 2 of the playoffs As for Chef Curry, well he is proving that he deserves every penny of that money as he has led the Warriors with 36.5 points per game in the 2019 Western Conference Finals with Kevin Durant hurt. The Dubs have just swept the Portland Trail Blazers 4-0 in the 2019 Western Conference Finals and will be waiting for who challenges them in their quest for a third straight NBA title.
2. Russell Westbrook $35,654,150
For decades, it looked like Oscar Robertson’s triple-double records were safe in the vault. Then Russell Westbrook came along and broke it one by one. Westbrook broke Robertson’s record of 42 triple-doubles in a single season and became the only player other than the Big O to average a triple-double in a single season. Now Westbrook is in a league by himself by averaging in a triple-double for the third straight season. Safe to say, the 2017 MVP earned his pay and continues to do so and everything else for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
3. Chris Paul $35,654,150
Last summer, the Rockets signed Chris Paul to a rich $160M deal good for seasons. Paul came to Houston from the Los Angeles Clippers and helped the team reach the 2018 Western Conference Finals, losing to the Golden State Warriors in seven games after taking a 3-2 series lead. This year, the Rockets fell to the Warriors in Round 2 and Paul wasn’t able to do much to help James Harden will the Rockets to the Western Conference Finals. Paul has missed at least 20 games in each of the last three seasons so Houston may have overpaid CP3 to become James Harden’s side kick.
4. LeBron James $35,654,150
King James returned to Cleveland after accomplishing his dream to win an NBA title in Miami. James then fulfilled his promise to bring a title to Cleveland when he led them to their first and only NBA title in 2016. Barely two years later, James found himself on the move again, transferring to the Los Angeles Lakers last summer to the tune of $154M for four years. James’ first season with the Lakers turned out to be a disaster as the Lakers missed the playoffs again while James didn’t play in the postseason for the first time since his rookie season.
5. Blake Griffin $32,088,932
When the Los Angeles Clippers decided to end the Lob City era, they traded Chris Paul to the Rockets during the summer of 2017 and then Blake Griffin to the Detroit Pistons in January 2018. Griffin had been dealing with injuries in his final years with the Clippers and he struggled a bit to start his Pistons career. But after Detroit hired 2018 NBA Coach of the Year Dwane Casey, Griffin found his old form and made the 2019 Eastern Conference All-Star team. He also led the Pistons to the playoffs although they were eliminated in Round One.
6. Gordon Hayward $31,214,195
Hayward is the most under-performing player on this list but it’s not entirely his fault. After signing a massive free agent deal with the Boston Celtics, Hayward and Kyrie Irving were supposed to lead the Green Men to the land of promise. But barely five minutes into his first game as a Celtic, Hayward suffered a serious leg injury that put him out for the rest of the season. The Celtics made a deep playoff run without him and Irving last season but with Kyrie and Hayward back this season, Boston struggled to get into the postseason and was eliminated in Round 2 by the Milwaukee Bucks.
7. Kyle Lowry $31,200,000
Kyle Lowry signed a three-year deal worth $100M in 2017 during his only All-Star season. That year, Lowry and backcourt mate DeMar DeRozan made the All-Star team and with plenty of promise, the Raptors kept the two together. But after Toronto was swept by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2018 NBA playoffs, the Cavaliers traded DeMar DeRozan for Kawhi Leonard. Lowry has been Toronto’s floor general since 2013 and has been one of its most steady players. With Leonard leading way, the Raptors are still playing the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2019 Eastern Conference Finals
8. Paul George $30,560,700
PG13 was supposed to be a short term lease for the Oklahoma City Thunder. OKC traded Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis to get George to OKC. He teamed up with Russell Westbrook to form a dynamic one-two punch. After the season, many though George would leave OKC For Los Angeles- whether it was with the Lakers or the Clippers. But George surprised many when he announced last summer that he was re-signing with the Thunder. OKC made a run to the playoffs this year but came up short against the Portland Trail Blazers in Round 1.
9. Mike Conley $30,521,115
Mike Conley is the only remnant of the Grit and Grind era which has defined the Memphis Grizzlies’ organization. Along with Marc Gasol, Zach Randolph and Tony Allen, grit and grind led the Grizzlies to seven playoff appearances including a trip to the Western Conference Finals in 2013. Conley spent most of the 2017 season on the injured list but returned this season in deadly form. However, with his Grit and Grind mates gone, the Grizzlies missed the playoffs for the second straight season. Conley is rumored to be on the trading block with Memphis picking second in the 2019 NBA Draft.
10. James Harden $30,421,854
James Harden is the most lethal weapon in the NBA. The Bearded One won the MVP award last season after an incredible offensive run. This year, Harden led the league in scoring again and his offensive exploits are all over the internet. Harden came to Houston from the OKC Thunder and after playing second (or third) fiddle in Oklahoma City, he blossomed to be an offensive wrecking ball under Mike D’Antoni. Harden has improved each year and this season, he looked more unstoppable than ever. But Harden couldn’t do it alone as the Rockets were ousted by the Warriors in the 2nd round of the playoffs.