Gilbert Arenas' $22 Million Salary Made Him 30th-Highest-Paid Athlete in 2013

Kyle NewportFeatured ColumnistApril 17, 2014

WASHINGTON - DECEMBER 10:  Gilbert Arenas #0 of the Washington Wizards stands on the court during the game against the Boston Celtics at the Verizon Center on December 10, 2009 in Washington, DC. The Celtics won 104-102. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2009 NBAE (Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images)
Ned Dishman/Getty Images

Gilbert Arenas hasn't played in the NBA since 2012, but he was still one of the highest-paid athletes in the world in 2013.

ESPN recently released its list of highest-paid athletes in the world based solely on salary and prize money. Fans shouldn't be surprised by many of the names on the list. Floyd Mayweather Jr., Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Kobe Bryant all found themselves near the top of the list. Those were fairly obvious observations.

However, there was one name a little bit farther down that probably came as a shock to many fans. Check out who came in at No. 30:

Yes, Arenas made more money last year than the two-time defending American League Most Valuable Player Miguel Cabrera. The former Washington Wizards star made more money than all but two NBA players—Kobe Bryant and Dirk Nowitzki. He made more than $22 million despite not playing a single minute. Not only did he not check into a single game, but he wasn't even on an NBA team last year.

Back in 2008, the Wizards signed Arenas to a six-year, $111 million deal. Even he has admitted that the contract may go down as one of the worst in NBA history. It's tough to argue against that notion. The guard played in only 134 games from 2007 to 2012, including only 55 for the Wizards after he signed the contract.

It may have looked like a reasonable contract at the time, but Arenas' deal will go down as one of the worst in the history of sports. Luckily for him, he still received quite the paycheck last year.

[The Washington Post]