The 64,000 dollar question might just be how much does the highest paid WNBA player make? WNBA salaries average right at a respectable $99,500 due to the ever-present salary cap.
One such athlete to make this much mullah is Lauren Jackson. The 2010 MVP of the WNBA Lauren Jackson makes the big bucks and does sop not only by her prodigious play on the court but her oh so sweet moves off the court and on the camera as well.
The marketability of the WNBA players can really start to grow once they hit their paces and become nearly household names. We have not given the league an all thumbs up as of yet but as a 6 year-old league in the highly-competitive market that is women’s professional sports the WNBA is making great strides and the salaries will be a good barometer of that ascent.
Please have a look at the methods into which a player in the WNBA can hope to be compensated for her all-out play and hustle. The top players such as Sue Bird, Lauren Jackson and many others can expect to see their base salaries rise each year they are still members of a team in the league. The base salary of the WNBA is only the beginning for these professional athletes as you can see from the below listing.
• Additional Marketing and Promotional Compensation means the Compensation in U.S. dollars that is paid or payable to a player pursuant to a WNBA Marketing and Promotional Agreement or a Team Marketing and Promotional Agreement.
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• Agreement means this Collective Bargaining Agreement entered into on January 24, 2008.
• Authorized WNBA Footwear Supplier (or “Authorized Footwear Supplier”) means an entity granted the right by WNBA Enterprises to outfit one or more WNBA Player’s with logo identified basketball footwear to be worn during WNBA games.
• Base Salary means the salary that is set forth in Exhibit 1 to a Player Contract that is paid or payable in U.S. dollars to a WNBA player (including players whose Player Contracts have been terminated) for rendering services under such Contract.
• Bona Fide Exclusive Endorsement Agreement means a binding agreement between a player and a Bona Fide Licensee authorizing or granting the Bona Fide Licensee the right to use the Player Attributes of such player exclusively on or in connection with a product or service, pursuant to which the player receives at least five thousand dollars ($5,000) annually.
As you can see the sky is most definitely the limit for these players of the game of professional basketball in the WNBA. Once a player reaches franchise player status this opens up the floodgates for the advertising marketers of the products that these players can and do market.
Will the time come when these players from the WNBA challenge the men in terms of gross revenue through pure-marketing and endorsement contracts? No one is banking on that, not just yet, literally. The reason for that is only because historically a market such as a professional women’s basketball league, which the WNBA is the first such entity, has no standard into which it can be judged and rated.
2010 WNBA Championship
The WNBA salaries issue is one that will be kicked-around as long as the league stays a viable and lucrative league and with the attendance in person doing as well as it did in 2010. With actual ticket sales as well as the network Neilson Ratings for the 2010 WNBA Championship series both right up there with the market forecast of success, the expected salaries of the WNBA players will continue to be watched and closely.