According to a Sports Illustrated report from 2009, an estimated 60 percent of NBA players go broke within five years of retirement. Nearly a decade later, that number is still the same, and it leaves fans with so many questions.
How do you blow through tens, and sometimes, hundreds of millions of dollars? Have these guys ever heard of financial advisers? And why haven’t they learned from other players’ past mistakes?
Most "regular" people couldn’t blow through millions of dollars this quickly even if they tried to, but athletes aren’t regular people. They are used to a life filled with excess, whether it be from fame, fortune, women, or even drugs and alcohol. The latter three will be an underlying theme throughout this list as many players lost much of their wealth due to alimony or child support payments, while others battled addiction with addiction often prevailing.
These 30 NBA players who went broke aren’t just your end-of-the-bench G-League call-ups who squandered their money. These players combined to make 80 All-Star teams and nearly $2 billion in career earnings (and that doesn’t even count money from endorsements). The list includes five Hall of Famers and even one active player who went broke while still playing. Some of these guys were able to overcome their financial difficulties, or are at least in the process of doing so, while others just continued their downward spiral even without money in the bank.
Hopefully, the next generation learns from these NBA players who blew their millions.