How Conor McGregor beat Messi and Ronaldo to become the highest paid athlete

MMA Fighter Conor McGregor is the highest-paid athlete in the world for 2021 as per Forbes.

The list of highest-paid athletes for 2021 was released by Forbes a couple of days back and it was topped by former UFC champion when Football superstars Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo came in second and third respectively.

According to Forbes, Conor had a net earning of $180 Million Dollars which translates to around 1326 Crore Indian Rupees in the year 2021. Barcelona and Argentina star Lionel Messi, meanwhile, had a total earning of $130 Million when Cristiano Ronaldo raked in $120 Million. Dak Prescott who came in fourth had a net earning of $97.5 Million followed by Lebron James in fifth with $96.5 Million.

Breaking down the earnings of Conor McGregor

The net earning of Conor McGregor can be broken down into two as per Forbes: The money that he earned inside the cage and the money that he earned outside it. Interestingly, McGregor made an amount of $22 Million inside the cage for his lone fight against Dustin Poirier which McGregor lost.

When it comes to his income from outside the cage, Conor had a whopping $158 Million which was the biggest reason for him being on top of the highest-paid athletes list by Forbes.

Also Read: UFC: The Most Asked Questions on the Internet and their answers

From this $158 Million, the Irishman earned $8 Million through his endorsements and video game deals when $150 Million came after he sold his majority stakes in Proper Twelve Whiskey to Proximo Spirits.

In other words, only 12% of McGregor’s net earning from the year 2021 came due to his time inside the cage when the remaining 88% came due to his business ventures elsewhere.

Now, if we take Lionel Messi into perspective. Messi had a total earning of $130 Million in 2021 from which $97 Million came thanks to his time on the football field when the remaining $33 Million came due to his sponsorships. That is, 74% percent of Messi’s total earning came from his time on the Football field.

Ronaldo has a slightly different story. For him, 58% of his net earning came thanks to his time on the football field when the remaining came due to his business ventures and sponsorships.

Biggest Takeaway

While Conor McGregor being on top of the highest-paid athletes' list is indeed a big boost for Mixed Martial Arts as a sport, it should be noted that most of his money came from his business ventures. However, it should also be taken into consideration that MMA is only a young sport in comparison to the likes of Football or Basketball which has been around for ages.

What are your thoughts on the news? Let us know in the comment section of the article below.

You can download our mobile app available on the Google Playstore and the App Store for all the latest news and updates from Indian MMA, UFC, ONE Championship, BRAVE CF, and much more