Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Pro Athletes Living Paycheck-to-Paycheck

March 2nd, 2011 | 6 comments »

With the NFL labor battle nearing a lockout, which would result in players not receiving pay or benefits for the duration, MSNBC published a piece today on players living paycheck-to-paycheck. They found that 380, or 22%, of the league’s players are dependent on that next paycheck.

I know it’s hard to believe, but even guys making hundreds of thousands of dollars a year live paycheck-to-paycheck. We all sit around and wonder, what does a guy do with $400,000 that he can barely make ends meet? It’s the same question a guy making $30,000 and getting by would ask someone making $100,000 and barely making it to the next paycheck.

The bottom line is that many people are slave to a natural tendency to try and keep up with his peers.  A baseball player making the league minimum of $400,000 may feel pressure to keep up with the guys on the team who are making $1 million. He wants to give his wife a nice house, park a luxury vehicle next to the others in the lot and treat his family to big vacations during the offseason.

Add in the fact that many pro athletes make loans to friends and family and invest in their second cousin’s newest money making venture, and it’s not that hard to see how things get out of contol. That’s not even taking into account the guys who drop $100,000 on a bar tab in one night.

Many football players can’t afford a lockout, but now perhaps neither can the owners. In a ruling yesterday, U.S. District Court Judge David Doty ruled in favor of the Players Association on their claim that owners left money on the table in television contract negotiations in exchange for provisions providing for payment in the event of a lockout. A hearing will be scheduled where Judge Doty will decide if any television money received during a lockout would be put into escrow and unavailable to owners. You can read more on the latest in the NFL labor battle here.

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