Elvin Hayes' net worth: assessing the wealth of the former basketball superstar and his bio

Elvin Hayes' net worth: assessing the wealth of the former basketball superstar and his bio

Kenneth Mwenda
updated at January 17, 2024 at 10:26 AM

Elvin Hayes' net worth not only reflects his enduring influence and success but also reveals his towering figure in the world of sports. His journey, from his remarkable NBA career to his ventures in entrepreneurship, tells a compelling story of achievement, resilience, and financial prosperity.

Elvin Hayes' net worth
Elvin Hayes at the Chris Paul Family Foundation's "Celebrity Server" Fundraiser at Mastro's Steakhouse on October 28, 2018, in Houston, Texas. Photo: Bob Levey (modified by author)
Source: Getty Images

Elvin Hayes is a former basketball superstar known as "the Big E." From his remarkable career earnings to his family life and accolades, we delve into the life and net worth of this legendary player.

Profile summary

Full name

Elvin Ernest Hayes

Date of birth

November 17, 1945

Place of birth

Rayville, Louisiana, USA


The Big E






Christopher Hayes (Father), Savannah Hayes (Mother)




University of Houston

Zodiac sign



78 years (as of January 2024)


6 ft 9 in (2.06 m / 206 cm)


235 lb (107 kg)

Eye colour

Dark brown

Hair colour



Retired basketball player

Elvin Hayes' age and height

Born on November 17, 1945, in Rayville, Louisiana, USA, Elvin Hayes is 78 years old as of January 2024. Standing at a height of 6 feet 9 inches (206 cm), he possessed the physical attributes that, combined with his basketball skills, made him a dominant force on the court.

Elvin Hayes' net worth

Elvin Hayes' net worth is estimated to be around $6 million. His wealth is a testament to his successful basketball career, during which he earned substantial salaries, making him one of the highest-paid players of his era. His longevity and ability to maintain a high level of performance undoubtedly contributed to his financial success.

Elvin Hayes' basketball career and stats

Elvin Hayes' teams
Elvin Hayes of the Washington Bullets on January 01, 1975. Photo: Focus on Sport (modified by author)
Source: Original

Elvin Hayes began his basketball journey with a bang, leading his high school team to a state championship in his senior year, averaging 35 points per game during the regular season. He capped it off with a phenomenal performance in the championship game, scoring 45 points and grabbing 20 rebounds.

In college, Hayes continued to shine, taking the Houston Cougars deep into the NCAA tournament in 1966 and reaching the Final Four in 1967. He was known for his impressive scoring, leading Houston in points for three consecutive seasons with averages of 27.2, 28.4, and an astounding 36.8 points per game. His college career also included setting a rebounding record in NCAA tournament history with 222 rebounds.

Elvin Hayes transitioned to the NBA in 1968, joining the San Diego Rockets. His rookie year was remarkable, as he led the league in scoring with 28.4 points per game, a feat unmatched by rookies since. He excelled in rebounding, breaking a long-standing trend of Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain dominance.

Moving to the Baltimore/Capital/Washington Bullets in 1972, Hayes achieved great success. He led the Bullets to three NBA Finals appearances, clinching the title in 1978. During this championship run, he set an NBA Finals record with 11 offensive rebounds in a single game, a record that stood for years.

After retiring from playing in 1984, Elvin Hayes briefly tried coaching, taking the reins of the Houston Shamrocks in the Women's American Basketball Association, although his coaching career was short-lived.

NBA accolades and accomplishments

Elvin Hayes' stats
A portrait of Elvin Hayes, a player for the Washington Bullets basketball team, on January 01, 1974. Photo: Bettmann / Contributor
Source: Getty Images

Hayes had already established himself as a formidable player even before embarking on his professional career. By the time he retired in 1984, he had left a lasting mark on various NBA statistical categories, ranking 11th in scoring with 27,313 points, fourth in rebounds with 16,279, and seventh in minutes played, nearing the 50,000-minute mark.

Remarkably, Hayes displayed exceptional durability throughout his 16-season career. He missed only nine games and participated in 1,303 games.

Throughout his illustrious career, Hayes achieved numerous highlights and accolades, including being a Consensus first-team All-American and earning distinctions such as UPI Player of the Year and Associated Press Player of the Year in the 1967-1968 season. He was also the NBA scoring champion in 1969-1970, made the NBA All-Rookie First Team, and was selected as an NBA All-Star 12 times from 1969 to 1980. Additionally, he led the NBA in rebounds during his career.

Hayes received several All-NBA and NBA All-Defensive Team honours, including three selections to the All-NBA Second Team, two to the NBA All-Defensive Second Team, and one to the All-NBA First Team. He achieved the pinnacle of success by winning an NBA championship in 1978.

Furthermore, Hayes was recognized as a member of the NBA 50th Anniversary Team and the NBA 75th Anniversary Team. He was also inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1990. His contributions were celebrated by having his jersey number 11 retired by the Washington Wizards and number 44 by the Houston Cougars.

Life after basketball career

After concluding his basketball career, Elvin returned to his university to complete his undergraduate degree. In 1986, he joined the University of Houston and earned a B.A. in recreation and speech. Alongside, he explored various business endeavours, managed a cattle ranch in Texas, and established a car dealership in Houston.

Elvin once remarked that studying was more challenging than his 16-year professional basketball career, stating, "I played 16 years of pro basketball, but this is the toughest thing I have ever done." In 2007, he fulfilled his childhood dream by becoming a Police Reserve Officer.

After his service, he transitioned to a radio analyst role for the Houston Cougars, broadcasting games on Houston's KBME. Clearly, Elvin had an eventful and diverse career.

Elvin Hayes' rings

Elvin Hayes has won one NBA championship in his career, with the Washington Bullets in 1978. This championship ring serves as a tangible symbol of his exceptional career and his contributions to his team's success.

Elvin Hayes' family and personal life

Where does Elvin Hayes live now?
Hakeem Olajuwon (L) and Elvin Hayes (R) sit court-side as the Milwaukee Bucks play the Houston Rockets at Toyota Center on December 11, 2022, in Houston, Texas. Photo: Bob Levey
Source: Getty Images

Beyond his basketball and educational accomplishments, Elvin Hayes is a family man. He has been married to Erna Livingston since March 29, 1967. They have four children.

He has a son who has continued the family legacy in the world of sports. Hayes' wife has been a steadfast source of support throughout his life, and together, they have built a strong family foundation.

Elvin Hayes today: is he still alive?

Based on the most recent information, Elvin Hayes is still alive. His lasting contributions to basketball and influence on fans and aspiring athletes continue to endure. Although he retired from professional basketball, his legacy remains vibrant, and he maintains a well-respected position in the world of sports.

Where does Elvin Hayes live now?

As of the most recent information available, it is unclear where Elvin Hayes currently resides. However, considering his post-NBA ventures in Texas and his role as a radio analyst for the Houston Cougars, it's possible that he resides in the Texas area.

Final word

Elvin Hayes' net worth reflects his incredible basketball career and the impact he made on the sport. As a basketball legend, he has left an enduring legacy, both on and off the court, and his achievements continue to be celebrated by fans and the basketball community.

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Kenneth Mwenda photo
Kenneth Mwenda
Kenneth Mwenda is a business and sports writer with over five years of experience. At Sportsbrief, he contributes to writing biographies and listicles.