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Broke NBA players: Current and former NBA players who are currently broke
When their playing careers ended, several former NBA players found themselves financially lost. In addition, these basketballers have found themselves in problems with the law and substance misuse. Some of these broke NBA players went from rags to riches and then back to rags.
Despite popular belief, many former NBA players have struggled financially after their playing days were over. We look at some more prominent figures who ended their careers by making poor decisions.
Percentage of broke NBA players
An article published by Sports Illustrated in 2009 predicted that 60% of NBA players become financially insolvent within five years after retirement. That is an unbelievable number of retired players. Who is the poorest NBA player right now? Below is a list of the current and former NBA players who are broke.
20. Vin Baker
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Throughout his career, he played for the Bucks, Supersonics, Celtics, Knicks, Rockets, and Clippers, but he has now managed to spend all but $500,000 of his salary. This is the final result of his reckless spending on booze, women, and poor investments.
But things are looking up for Baker now that he owns the Starbucks he once worked at and is a professional basketball analyst for Fox Sports. He has written a book, "God and Starbucks.”
19. Chris Washburn
Into his career with the Warriors and Hawks, he had already amassed $9 million. However, three negative substance abuse tests within three years forced him into early retirement. Addiction and homelessness followed as a direct result of this. Washburn has been sober for fifteen years and devotes most of his time to supporting his loved ones.
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18. Jason Caffey
During his career, he played for the Bulls, the Warriors, and the Bucks, and he was once valued at $8 million. However, his monthly child support payments for his ten children by eight different women, his legal bills for an assault charge, and other personal troubles wiped out his entire net worth.
It is hardly surprising that Caffey's life has taken the same path as many other former NBA stars for the same reasons. Maybe the NBA should start a help program for the celebrities it creates to stop the growing number of bankrupt NBA players.
17. Erick Strickland
He spent nine years in the NBA, playing for the Mavericks, Knicks, Grizzlies, Celtics, Pacers, and Bucks. He made $13 million in revenue, but after putting all his trust in the wrong people, he ended up with nothing. Erick lost his financial security and a strong connection when a trusted buddy who promised an easy investment opportunity became a con artist. He is currently among the poor NBA players.
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16. Shawn Kemp
During his extensive and successful NBA career, he played for the Seattle Supersonics, the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Portland Trail Blazers, and the Orlando Magic, among other teams. However, despite a salary of roughly $90 million during his extraordinarily fruitful career, he is estimated to have little more than $5 million in liquid assets.
Even the enormous wealth he amassed via his Reebok partnerships has vanished. The monthly child support payments he must make to six different families and his many criminal costs are primarily responsible for his financial downfall. It appears to be a pattern that NBA players who have lost all their money also have problems at home and in the court system.
15. Derrick Coleman
During his time in the NBA, he played for the Nets, 76ers, Hornets, and Pistons. The $45 million he earned throughout his career was frittered away on lavish lifestyle choices and wild parties. Coleman decided to return to school after his financial setback and get a degree.
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He has a day job and is an activist for clean water and equality in his hometown of Flint, Michigan. Yet, despite their hard work and success, he still managed to become one of the many NBA players who went bankrupt due to a substantial financial loss.
14. Glen Rice
He left the NBA with almost $25 million and 15 years of memories after playing for the Heat, Hornets, Lakers, Knicks, Rockets, and Clippers. Yet, despite his enormous success, in 2016, Rice's child support payments were reduced drastically because he claimed he could not afford the required $1,500 per month.
Rice continues to earn money from his golden days, much to the chagrin of the women who rely on him for child support, by hosting training camps and giving autograph signings. Unfortunately, nothing indicates that his financial status has improved recently.
13. Dennis Rodman
He had a legendary career in the NBA, playing for the Pistons, Bulls, Spurs, Lakers, and Mavericks between 1986 and 2000. Despite a career that has brought in over $43 million, the star is just $500,000 richer.
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Rodman has spent his income on misconduct costs (such as the $200,000 misconduct fee for kicking a referee in the crotch) and a fancy lifestyle that he can no longer afford, even if this may not seem like a lot to most people. However, Dennis Rodman is among the most recognizable bankrupt NBA players due to his charisma and success.
12. Darius Miles
His NBA career with the Clippers, Cavaliers, Trail Blazers, and Grizzlies netted him a fortune of $1.5 million. But unfortunately, his little income was jeopardized by his early entry into the workforce, the foolish choices of a young man, and a knee injury that halted his career.
11. Dan Issel
He made around $18 million in the 1970s as a dedicated player for the Denver Nuggets. In 2010, however, we learned that Dan owed $4.3 million to more than 34 creditors. To make ends meet, he had to sell off his NBA memorabilia.
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10. Kenny Anderson
He made almost $60 million in salary alone while playing for the Nets, Hornets, Trail Blazers, Celtics, Supersonics, Pacers, Hawks, and Clippers. As the story goes, Anderson had only $800,000 when he retired in 2006. That was 15 years after his NBA draft.
Due to his failure to pay child support for seven kids to five separate mothers, he eventually became bankrupt. Anderson's life and choices, which include a string of recent DUI arrests, the loss of his high school coaching job, and the publication of a heartbreaking memoir about his childhood, illustrate the need for the NBA to help its retired players deal with mental and financial hardships.
9. Mookie Blaylock
He had NBA experience with the Nets, Hawks, and Warriors and was said to be extraordinarily bright. He amassed $32 million throughout his career, which he promptly frittered away on legal bills. Then, during an alcohol withdrawal seizure, Blaylock drove recklessly and crashed his automobile, destroying his life savings and any remaining shred of his pride and self-respect.
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8. Christian Laettner
Throughout the 1990s, he was a member of the Timberwolves, Hawks, Pistons, Mavericks, Wizards, and Heat. Despite amassing over $60 million thanks to these squads and accompanying brand deals, his home was foreclosed upon in 2015. The main reasons for this are bad business decisions and failed investments.
7. Latrell Sprewell
Throughout his career with the Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks, and Minnesota Timberwolves, he earned $100 million and appeared in four all-star games. Although he used to have $200,000, he now only has $150,000.
This is partly because he was suspended for violent conduct during a game and turned down a lucrative contract offer from the Minnesota Timberwolves worth over $21 million. Because of this, he was forced to call it a career and is now saddled with debt more than his net worth. That is why you will see his name among these bankrupt NBA stars.
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6. Robert Smith
During his seven-year NBA career, he was drafted by the Denver Nuggets in the third round in 1977 and played for the Utah Jazz, New Jersey Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers, Milwaukee Bucks, Los Angeles Clippers, and San Antonio Spurs. After spending all of his hard-earned money, Robert Smith launched a seven-year professional basketball career in France. After retiring from basketball, Smith went into broadcasting.
After leading UNLV to its first NCCA Final Four title in 1977, Smith stayed actively involved with the institution in various during his NBA career capacities. After Smith suffered a devastating stroke in 2019, the UNLV men's basketball team organized a fundraiser to assist Smith's financially strapped family with his medical costs. Robert "Bingo" Smith is one of the broke ex-NBA players.
5. Jayson Williams
While showing off an expensive gun to his buddies, Jayson inadvertently shot and killed his driver, sending his life into a tailspin after a catastrophic injury ended his basketball career prematurely. This adventure has, of course, up a sizable portion of his resources, both time and money.
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4. Antoine Walker
Before announcing his retirement from basketball in 2012, he played for the BSN's Mets de Guaynabo and the NBA D-Idaho League's Stampede. He possibly could have retired after his years in the NBA and avoided the D league altogether if he had not blown through his $100 million NBA fortune and filed for bankruptcy in 2007. This was only a year after he won an NBA title with the Heat in 2006. According to Walker, his ex-wife squandered most of their wealth on debts, legal expenses, and excessive spending.
3. Joe Smith
An NBA veteran of 26 years, he has played for the Warriors, 76ers, Timberwolves, Pistons, Bucks, Nuggets, Bulls, Cavaliers, Thunder, Hawks, Lakers, and Nets, among others. Joe Smith has amassed a staggering $60 million in pay despite his erratic roster history.
Smith had a hugely successful NBA career, but he is now six figures in the red because he is obsessed with "Love and Hip Hop" star Moniece Slaughter, his excessive spending on real estate and automobiles, and his failed attempt to re-enter the NBA via a developmental league.
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2. Bill Willoughby
He played for the Hawks, the Braves, the Cavaliers, the Rockets, the Spurs, and the Nets, and his $15 million in career earnings should be more than enough to get him settled. Unfortunately, despite getting a degree after leaving the NBA, these resources have probably been spent on legal trouble and other missteps.
1. Larry Johnson
During his time in the NBA, he earned $12 million while playing for the Hornets and the Knicks. He reportedly collected an astonishing $83 million when endorsements were included. Johnson owes a lot of money to different people and has spent much of his money on child support payments to five women. He is among the broke NBA players that were once rich.
How much is the lowest paid NBA player?
The minimum pay for a player with two years of experience is $1,836,090. But contracts for that amount will not affect a team's salary cap or budget.
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What NBA player grew up poor?
Larry Bird is among some of the NBA players who was raised during financial difficulty. Though he became one of the best players in Boston Celtics history, Larry Bird endured a challenging childhood and was born into poverty.
Who is the wealthiest NBA player?
Michael Jordan has the highest estimated net worth among NBA players. He is estimated to be worth around $1.7 billion, according to Forbes in 2022.
Why do so many NBA players go broke after retiring?
Many star athletes cannot pay their bills because of their extravagant lifestyles. Most professional athletes that run into financial difficulties share commonalities, such as a limited time frame to make money, an absence of financial education, and excessive spending.
Did you know that six out of ten NBA players will be cleaned out within five years of leaving the league? These are 20 of the most bizarre instances of NBA players squandering their enormous earnings. The leading causes of broke NBA players are excessive spending and a lack of funds.
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