Highest-paid NBA players of 2021 and all time
Find out the highest-paid NBA players, from the current top earners to those who have made the most money ever.
Check out the Betway Insider's NBA picks and predictions page for tips throughout the 2020-21 NBA season.
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 Washington Wizards’ 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, who was traded to the Houston Rockets by Washington in exchange for Westbrook in December 2020. The 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 James Harden, also of the Rockets, 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.
Visit Betway's NBA betting page.