At least when it comes to earnings. Roger is in the No. 5 spot on Sports Illustrated’s “International 20” list of the top paid non-American athletes in the world. The numbers include prize money, appearance fees, endorsment deals, etc., and the small print says that the date range is based “on current or most recently completed seasons” which doesn’t mean much in tennis. I’d say based on the whopping $35,000,000 Roger’s made this “year,” the magazine must be taking the 2007 season into account. If Roger were an American citizen, he’d be No. 6 on the magazine’s “Fortunate 50” list, right between dueling ballers Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal.
He might want to have a chat with his agent, Tony Godsick. Fed’s in the poorhouse compared to fellow “Gillette Champion” Tiger Woods, who tops everyone who’s ever sweat for a living at $128,000,000 for the season! (That’s $23,000,000 in prize money and $105,000,000 in endorsements – can I BARF now?)
The only other tennis player on either list is Maria Sharapova. She’s ranked No. 13 on the “International 20” with $21,760,000 in earnings. If she were an official American, she’d be in the No. 22 spot on the “Fortunate 50” list, between NBA stars Michael Finley and Dwight Howard.
Most notable to me is that Maria is also the ONLY woman on either list. The Williams sisters haven’t been keeping up with the endorsements, Danica Patrick hasn’t broken through yet, and Michelle Wie’s star has fizzled for the time being. Could this indignity be the extra motivation Serena needs to dominate the slams again? Do it for the girls, ReRe!
Who do you think will be the next tennis player (of either sex) to make it on the list?