*ESPN is reporting that Michael Jordan made more money last year selling his signature kicks than in his entire career playing basketball for the Bulls and Wizards from 1984 to 2003. PBS confirmed the report in an infographic that shows Jordan makes more than $100 million per year off royalties from his Nike Air Jordan brand.
The graphic below shows Jordan is the highest-paid retired athlete, earning more off his shoes than the $95 million he banked during his 15-year playing career.
As ESPN notes, “these figures are not adjusted for inflation; based on his numbers from Basketball-Reference and the Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation calculator, Jordan made nearly $100 million in 2014 dollars during his three-year stint after his first retirement (1995-96 through 1997-98).”
Matt Powell, a sport industry analyst from NPD Group and contributor to Forbes, estimates that in the U.S., Nike and subsidiary Jordan Brand account for more than 90 percent of basketball shoe sales. Americans spend about $34 billion dollars a year on sneakers between June 2014 and June 2015, of that amount, Michael’s line of Nike Air Jordans raked in $100 million.
It was reported in August that Jordan made $75.5 million from endorsement deals in 2012, which is more than any active NBA player.
Recently a jury at a civil trial ordered a grocery-store chain to pay Jordan nearly $10 million after using his identity on a coupon for steaks.
“I’m so used to playing on a different court,” Jordan told reporters outside the courthouse. “This shows I will protect my name to the fullest. … It’s my name and I worked hard for it … and I’m not just going to let someone take it.”
In March, Jordan came in at 1741st on Forbes magazine’s annual list of the world’s richest people, with a $1.4 billion net worth.