Are Players Going Across The World Because Of The US Economy?

Andrew MasonCorrespondent IJuly 26, 2008

Is the ever weakening US dollar a factor for professional athletes who are not superstars?

My first response would be no, but it actually does.  In January 2004 the Euro and the US Dollar were almost equal but now a US dollar is equal to .63 Euro! 

Exhibit A: Josh Childress.  He was getting a deal reportedly worth more than 5.5 million in his first year salary but instead he chose to sign with the Olympiakos.  He is going to get 20 million euros in three years.  Assuming he stays all three years he will get equivalent of 31 million dollars US.  If I were him and had the chance to make that amount in just three years compared to what would have him taken him at least five years to make.  That is pretty nice chunk of change considering he did not start a single game this year.

Exhibit B: The mass exodus of NHL players to Europe and Russia.  11 NHL players as of now are heading across the pond to play hockey.  Eight of them are going to play in the new KHL (Kontinental Hockey League) in Russia.  All of them with the exception of Jaromir Jagr will get more money in Europe and Russia then they probably will make here by millions.

As Hudson PB. of Bleacher Report wrote in his article "Josh Childress and Jaromir Jagr Pack Their Bags: Coincidence or New Trend?" 17 ice hockey and basketball players are heading to Europe.  Though some of them do live in Europe and it will be easier for them to live there during the off-season not all of them actually do.

So why make the move to a different country across the globe?

Money.  Money in two ways:

A) They will make more money there than they will here probably ever. 

B) The money paid they make will be even more here except in Russia which would be changed into equivalent of US dollars. 

Evgeni Malkin was offered 12 million in US to play in the KHL tax-free.  For those of you who do not know the exchange rate of US to Russia Rouble its 1 US dollar equals 23.379 Russian Roubles.  So no matter how you look at it that's lot of money.

The US economy is having all the players that are not superstars going across to Europe to make more money than they will get in the US.  Of course lets not forget that they will be superstars in those countries because they wont be here.

Thanks to Hudson B. for the inspiration!!