For a fortunate few group of athletes, this is the time of year they will become millionaires. In the NFL, it’s free agency signing period, which gives players an opportunity to sign with a new team, for often incredible figures. For example, last year Ndamukong Suh left Detroit for Miami for $118 million.
At the end of next month (April 28-30) the NFL will create a new set of millionaires, followed by yet another group of new millionaires created in the NBA draft in June.
Here is hoping these future millionaires will follow the lead of NFL stars Marshawn Lynch and Calvin Johnson, who recently announced their retirements, at 29 and 30 years old, respectively.
Now, Lynch and Johnson would seem like polar opposites. Lynch had a controversial relationship with the media, often refusing to give any type of comments relative to the game, or situation at hand. Meanwhile, Johnson handled himself like a statesman on and off the field.
However, they had one very important similarity, besides being productive football players. Lynch and Johnson were also smart and prudent with their money.
Between the two, they earned more than $160 million in their careers, with Johnson bringing home $112 million in his nine seasons, and Lynch more than $50 million.
More importantly, they have been wise with their earnings to the point where they didn’t have to play anymore. Johnson and Lynch should serve as models for future athletes on how to handle the business side of professional sports. When an athlete can do that he/she is able to control their destiny.
Recently, basketball Hall of Famer Pamela McGee was a guest on The African-American Athlete radio show, and talked about some practical things pro athletes can do to protect their earnings, including simply putting money in the bank and eliminating the ‘baby mama drama.’ McGee says eliminating ‘baby mama drama’ key to financial stability.
We have seen too many examples of professional athletes going broke in the past. A recent Forbes Magazine article once stated that 80 percent of pro athlete file bankruptcy. ESPN filmed a documentary on pro athletes going broke. Why athletes go broke. Former NBA player Antoine Walker reportedly squandered more than $110 million in earnings.
But now, with so much financial information out there, and so many very simple steps pro athletes can take to managing their finances, those days should be over.
So, all these times Marshawn Lynch was saying “I am just here so I don’t get fined.”…. he really, really meant it. That cat was saving his money…..Linked Antoine Walker talks about how he lost his fortune.