For the fourth straight year, Sports Illustrated set out to rank the 50 top-earning American athletes (taking into account on and off the field income), and it's no surprise to see the familiar names at the top of the list. The most obvious? Tiger Woods has reached an otherworldly plateau of nearly $112 million. Boxing is back from the dead for now, thanks to No. 2 Oscar De La Hoya, and the Shaq and Kobe rivalry lives on.
Half the list is made up of NBA players, while only 12 baseball players and five football players made the cut. There were three NASCAR drivers and just one woman (welcome, Michelle Wie!). Meanwhile, our International 20 list of the top-earning non-American athletes is dominated by soccer players, of whom there are nine, including Major League Soccer-bound David Beckham.
As always, we limited our estimates to salary, winnings, bonuses, endorsements and appearances. Candidates for the 50 had to be American citizens. For an in-depth analysis of who's on the Fortunate 50 and why, click here.
Last Year's Rank: 1
Mighty Tiger's handlers figure sports' first $100 million man's endorsement and appearance income increases an average of 13 percent a year.
Oscar De La Hoya
Last Year's Rank: NR
One last giant pay day? On top of $25 million purse, Golden Boy took home $28 million in pay-per-view receipts from the Mayweather title fight.
Last Year's Rank: 2
One of sports' most reliable endorsers, Lefty is now at a point where his annual take in off-the-course income outdoes his total career winnings.
Miami Heat (NBA)
Last Year's Rank: 3
Shaq took 20,000-square foot mansion off the market last year when no one would meet $32 million asking price. Now he's trying again -- for $35 million.
Los Angeles Lakers (NBA)
Last Year's Rank: 4
Need proof Kobe is a marketing genius? Since he switched from No. 8 to No. 24, his jersey has become the top seller in both the U.S. and China.
Cleveland Cavaliers (NBA)
Last Year's Rank: 6
King James' $2.1 million, 11-bedroom mansion near Akron is in the process of being refitted with a theater, bowling alley, casino and barber shop.
Minnesota Timberwolves (NBA)
Last Year's Rank: 11
If dark forces are conspiring for NBA's highest-paid to find his way to L.A., don't be surprised: He idolized Magic Johnson's Showtime crew as a boy.
New York Yankees (MLB)
Last Year's Rank: 7
Bronx scent? Jeter's three-step "Driven" skin-care products are a "quick and easy" way for men to take care of their face, says the Yankee captain.
New York Yankees (MLB)
Last Year's Rank: 8
Still due $81 million over the next three years of his mega-contract, but could make more from another team if he chooses to opt out after '07.
Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Last Year's Rank: 9
Departure from DEI, his late father's company, will prompt an unprecedented bidding war for No. 8; Junior merchandise brings in $30 million a year.
Sources: salaries, winnings and bonus figures from players' associations, tour records, agents and news reports. Endorsement estimates from Burns Entertainment & Sports Marketing, other sports-marketing executives and analysts, and agents. Salaries based on current or most recently completed seasons (exception: 2007 for NFL). For winnings-based sports (auto racing, golf, tennis), 2006 calendar year amounts used.