Conor McGregor is the only MMA star to make list of highest paid athletes of all time – and he barely made the cut

The latest rankings by Sportico unveiled Conor McGregor as the sole representative from the UFC among the top 50 highest-paid athletes of all time. McGregor’s remarkable journey from a two-division champion to a global phenomenon has earned him a significant place in sports history.

Released on March 7, 2024, the list compiled by Sportico highlights McGregor’s position at #50, amidst a dominance of boxers occupying higher ranks. Notable names such as Mike Tyson, Floyd Mayweather, and Manny Pacquiao emerged ahead of McGregor, showcasing the lucrative nature of combat sports.

Name Inflation-Adjusted Earnings
Michael Jordan $3.73B
Tiger Woods $2.668B
Cristiano Ronaldo $1.928B
Arnold Palmer $1.763B
LeBron James $1.7B
Jack Nicklaus $1.67B
Lionel Messi $1.67B
David Beckham $1.5B
Roger Federer $1.4B
Floyd Mayweather $1.48B
Phil Mickelson $1.43B
Michael Schumacher $1.3B
Shaquille O’Neal $1.21B
Kobe Bryant $1.04B
Greg Norman $1.03B
Neymar $1.01B
Kevin Durant $955M
Mike Tyson $905M
Lewis Hamilton $880M
Alex Rodriguez $725M
Stephen Curry $710M
Manny Pacquiao $730M
Tom Brady $745M
Jeff Gordon $710M
Peyton Manning $710M
George Foreman $703M
Valentino Rossi $700M
Rafael Nadal $591M
Oscar De La Hoya $583M
Derek Jeter $575M
Rory McIlroy $575M
Ernie Els $542M
Novak Djokovic $539M
Dale Earnhardt Jr. $525M
Fernando Alonso $525M
Magic Johnson $545M
Canelo Alvarez $545M
Evra Hingis $545M
Kevin Garnett $535M
Evander Holyfield $550M
Serena Williams $550M
Russell Westbrook $520M
Andre Agassi $515M
Chris Paul $575M
James Harden $570M
Kimi Raikkonen $570M
Dwyane Wade $555M
Aaron Rodgers $560M
Drew Brees $560M
Conor McGregor $555M


MMA journalist Jedi Goodman shared the rankings on X, drawing attention to McGregor’s standing in comparison to prominent boxers. The adjusted list for inflation emphasizes McGregor’s remarkable achievement within the realm of combat sports.

In a tweet, Goodman highlighted McGregor’s position alongside boxing legends:

“Sportico’s Top 10 Highest-Paid Athletes of All-Time Other Notable outside the top 10: 18. Mike Tyson $905 ($460M non-adjusted earnings) 22. Manny Pacquiao $750M ($565M non-adjusted earnings) 26. George Foreman$705M ($360M non-adjusted earnings) 29. Oscar De La Hoya $685M ($410M non-adjusted earnings) 37. Canelo Alvarez $640M ($550M non-adjusted earnings) 40. Evander Holyfield $630M ($315M non-adjusted earnings) 50. Conor McGregor $555M ($465M non-adjusted earnings)”

Among combat sports athletes, Floyd Mayweather Jr. claimed the top spot at #10, highlighting the financial prowess of boxing in comparison to MMA. With Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, and Cristiano Ronaldo leading the overall rankings, McGregor’s presence reflects the evolution of MMA as a lucrative sport.

In response to the Poirier-Saint Denis bout at UFC 299, McGregor shared his thoughts on X, acknowledging the French fighters’ performance. His tweet sparked speculation about a potential rematch with Dustin Poirier, with ‘The Diamond’ responding to McGregor’s remarks during his post-fight conference.