Why are most professional players, millionaires? It is because sports are some of the best-paying careers in the world. Most sports leagues pay their players well and that is why professional players strive to join the best sports leagues. For instance, the NFL is the best-paying sports league in the world. If you want to make millions in sports, consider joining these top-paying sports leagues.
What Sport League Makes the Most Money?
The following are some of the leagues that make the most money and also pay their players well.
1. National Football League - NFL
National Football League (NFL) is the sports league that makes the most money in the world. NFL was founded in 1921 and has its headquarters in New York City. NFL consists of 32 teams that are divided equally between National Football Conference (NFC) and American Football Conference (AFC).
In 2021/22 season, NFL generated $17.19 billion in revenues. NFL earns most of its revenues from TV deals, merchandising, ticket sales, and licensing. Some of NFL's TV partners include CBS, NBC, Fox, NFL Network, ESPN, and Telemundo Deportes.
NFL shares football-related income between owners and players. The owners get 52% and the players 48% of total revenues as per the CBA. Although NFL makes lots of money, the cost of running the sports league is also high.
2. Major League Baseball - MLB
Major League Baseball (MLB) comes second among the sports leagues that make the most money in the world. It was founded in 1903 and has its headquarters in New York City. In 2021, MLB generated $10.7 billion in revenue. It is one of the oldest and most profitable leagues in the US and Canada.
MLB generates its revenues from media rights, the sale of tickets, sponsorships, and TV deals. Some of MLB TV partners in the US include ESPN/ESPN2, and Fox/FSI. TBS, MLB Network, and YouTube. Its TV sponsors from Canada include Sportsnet, RDS, TVA Sports, TSN/TSN2, and MLB Network. MLB consists of 30 teams; 15 of which are in the National League (NL) and 25 in the American League (AL).
3. National Basketball Association - (NBA)
The NBA ranks third among the sports leagues that make the most money. Besides, it is the fastest-growing sports league in the world. It was founded in 1946 and has its headquarters in New York City. During the 2021/22 season, NBA generated $10 billion in revenues. NBA generates its revenues from sponsorships, merchandising, and ticket sales.
Some of the notable players who have played for the NBA include LeBron James, Michael Jordan, and Kobe Bryant. Some of the NBA’s TV partners include ABC/ESPN, NBA TV, and TNT while those in Canada include NBA TV Canada, TSN/TSN2, Sportsnet/Sportsnet One.
Also read: Which sports make the most money?
4. English Premier League
English Premier League (EPL) is among the most profitable sports leagues in the world. It was founded in 1992 and has its headquarters in London, England. During the 2021/22 season, EPL generated $7.3 billion in revenues.
The EPL generates its revenues through broadcasting fees, commercials, and sponsorship deals. It consists of 20 club teams. Some of its TV partners include Sky Sports, Amazon Prime Video, BT Sports,s and BBC Sports.
5. La Liga
The Campeonato Nacional de Liga de Primera División commonly known as La Liga ranks position 5 among the leagues that makes the most money. It was founded in 1929 and has its headquarters in Madrid, Spain.
La Liga consists of 20 club teams. During the last season, La Liga generated $5.26 billion in revenue. Its main sources of revenue include TV and broadcasting rights. Some of La Liga TV partners include ESPN, DSports Sky Sports, TSN, RDS, ABC, SuperSport, and ATV.
6. National Hockey League - (NHL)
National Hockey League (NHL) is also a profitable sports league. It was founded in 1917 and has its headquarters in New York City. During the 2021/22 season, NHL generated $5.09 billion in revenue. NHL generates its revenues through the sale of gate tickets, broadcasting fees, and royalties from licensing.
NHL consists of 31 teams, 24 of which are in the United States and 7 in Canada. Some of its TV partners in Canada include Sportsnet, and TVA Sports while those in the US are NBC/NBCSN and NHL Network.
Bundesliga was founded in 1963 and has its headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany. It is a profitable sports league having generated $4.74 billion in revenue in the 2021/22 season. It generates most of its revenues from media receipts and advertising.
Bundesliga consists of 18 teams and operates on a system of promotion and relegation. Some of its TV partners include DAZN and Sky in German-speaking countries and Sportsnet, Flow Sports, ESPN, SCCN, ABC, ESPN, and Flow Sports in the Americas.
Also read: What sports do the rich play?
8. Serie A
Serie A is also a profitable league that is making good money. It was founded in 1898 in Italy. During the 2021/22 season, Serie A generated $3.62 billion in revenue. Its revenues are distributed this way, 50% to all clubs playing in the league, 30% distributed according to club performances, and 20% distributed to the club’s supporter base. Serie A generates revenues from TV rights.
9. UEFA Champions League
UEFA Champions League was founded in 1955 and has its headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland. It is organized by the Union of European Football Associations. During the 2021/22 seasons, the UEFA championship made $3.31 billion in revenue. Its major sources of revenue include sponsorship and media coverage.
It consists of 32 teams. Some of its TV partners include DAZN in Canada, BT Sport in the UK, Teleclub and CH Media in Switzerland and CBS Sports in the US, and many others.
10. Ligue 1
Ligue 1 sports league is also known as Ligue 1 Uber Eats for sponsorship reasons. It was founded in 1930 in France. During the last season, Ligue 1 generated $2.99 billion in revenue. Its major source of revenue is sponsorship and media coverage.
Some of Ligue 1 TV sponsors include beIN Sports and OneSoccer in Canada, ESPN, ABC and SCCN, and STVS.
What League Makes the Most Money?
The following is a summary of leagues and the money they make:
|Rank||Sports League||Revenue||Total Attendance|
|5||La Liga||$5.26 billion||10,200,458|
|8||Serie A||$3.62 billion||-|
|9||UEFA Champions League||$3.31 billion||6,163,044|
|10||Ligue 1||$2.99 billion||-|
How Do Sports Leagues Make Money?
Now that you know the leagues that make the most money, you could be wondering, how do these leagues make money? The most common way leagues make money is through commercial sponsorships and endorsements, the sale of tickets, the sale of players to other teams, and television broadcasting rights. The major source of revenue for leagues is sponsorship.
Summary of What Sports League Makes the Most Money?
The above are some of the leagues that make the most. Leagues in the US are the most profitable, the most profitable one is NFL. Leagues make money through sponsorships and endorsements, TV broadcasting fees, the sale of tickets, and the sale of players to other teams. If you want to earn a high salary as a player, consider joining profitable leagues.