Famous athletes receive a lot of praise for what they do on the court, rink, field, or whatever playing surface they prefer. They have millions of fans all around the world, make an insane amount of money, and act as a role model and inspiration to young athletes everywhere.
With that said, not all famous athletes are one-trick ponies. In fact, most of them do a great job of balancing their other hobbies, talents, and skills with their dominance in sport. Whether it be through investments, sponsorships, or collaborations, famous athletes are always staying busy.
You have to keep in mind that most famous athletes will spend around 10-20 years in their respective sport. While that’s a long time, they’re usually in their 30s and 40s when they retire from sport, meaning they have a lot of life left to live and a lot of goals left to accomplish.
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Famous Athletes With Successful Side Hustles
If you had to name a couple famous athletes that have found success outside of their respective sport, there are likely a few names that come to mind right away. They’re the athletes we see on every television channel, website, billboard, and in every conversation in cities around the world.
They turn everything they touch into gold. When they set their sights on something, they achieve it. They set high standards for themselves and high standards for those that follow. They don’t have time for people that aren’t ready to do business or aren’t ready to make moves.
You’re probably wondering who some of these famous athletes are and don’t worry, we’re going to share some of them with you below! Now there are literally hundreds and thousands of famous athletes to choose from, so feel free to let us know any of your favorites that we miss!
15. Conor McGregor
Conor McGregor is a legendary Irish mixed martial artist that’s currently in the latter end of his career. He made his UFC debut in 2013 and won his first seven fights. He’s just 3-4 since, but he’s a two-division champion in the UFC and Cage Warriors (featherweight and lightweight).
Aside from being the richest MMA fighter of all-time due to his high-paying pay-per-view fights, McGregor also has a fashion partnership with David August called August McGregor and was a majority owner of Proper No. Twelve Irish Whiskey – though he has since sold his stake.
14. Zach Hyman
Zach Hyman is a 29-year old left winger for the Edmonton Oilers of the NHL. He’s currently in his seventh season in the league after spending the first six with the Maple Leafs. In 345 career games played, he has tallied 86 goals, 99 assists, 185 points, and 14 game-winning goals.
In addition to his success in the NHL, Hyman is currently a best-selling children’s book author that’s signed to Penguin Random House. He has published three books – The Bambino and Me (2014), Hockey Hero (2015), and The Magician’s Secret (2018). He is working on a fourth.
13. Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo is a 37-year old forward for Manchester United of the Premier League. He’s widely regarded as one of the greatest soccer players of all-time, tallying 692 goals and 231 assists in 928 pro appearances since 2003. He has 18 goals since rejoining Manchester United.
Outside of his incredible soccer skills, Ronaldo spends a lot of time and energy on his fashion business, CR7 (his initials, CR, and his soccer number, 7). Over the past 15+ years, he has opened fashion boutiques and launched underwear, shoes, shirts, socks, and fragrances.
12. Kevin Durant
Kevin Durant is a 33-year old small forward for the Brooklyn Nets of the NBA. He’s one of the most lethal scorers of all-time and has been averaging 27.2 points, 7.1 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 1.1 steals, and 1.1 blocks in 939 games played since entering the league back in 2007.
When he’s not swishin’ buckets, Durant heads a venture capital firm called Thirty Five Ventures LLC (named after his jersey number, 35). He has produced documentaries, acted in a children’s film, made a variety of investments, does public speaking, and even has an online podcast.
11. Damian Lillard
Damian Lillard is a 31-year old point guard for the Portland Trail Blazers of the NBA. He was a sixth overall pick of the team in 2012 and has spent the past 10 seasons with them – proving to be one of the most loyal players in the game. He averages a career 24.6 points per game.
When not making three point shots from the logo, Lillard is a bonafide rapper that loves his craft. He has released four studio albums since 2016 and nine singles since 2015. He also owns a Toyota dealership, does a lot of charity work in his community, and is a father to three kids.
10. Carmelo Anthony
Carmelo Anthony is a 37-year old forward that played last season with the Los Angeles Lakers of the NBA. He was the third overall draft pick in what’s regarded as the greatest NBA draft class of all-time. He is averaging 22.5 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 2.7 assists over his career.
Anthony has earned a lot of respect in the NBA community for his charity work. He helped open a youth development center and has donated millions of dollars to the Baltimore community. He has also appeared in several films, TV shows, music videos, and he owns a soccer team.
9. Cassius Marsh
Cassius Marsh is a 29-year old defensive end for the Chicago Bears of the NFL. He was a fourth round draft pick of the Seattle Seahawks in 2014 and has played on eight different teams since then. He has accumulated 181 tackles, 15.0 sacks, and 15 forced fumbles in his career.
Marsh’s football career hasn’t been as illustrious as he would’ve hoped, but he has made a ton of big moves outside of sport. He’s an avid trading card collector, mostly with Magic: The Gathering and Pokemon. He was an initial investor in Cameo and owns a local game store.
8. Tom Brady
Tom Brady is a 44-year old starting quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He is widely regarded as the greatest football player of all-time, has more accolades than any other player, and you could honestly write an entire book about his records and various accomplishments.
When not slinging touchdowns on the football field, Brady keeps himself busy with his family and has made a number of ventures and investments with his TB12 brand – including books, charity work, non-profits, meal prep, fashion, etc. He’s also an investor in the NFT space.
7. Serena Williams
Serena Williams is a 40-year old female tennis player on the WTA tour. She has been named the year-end No. 1 overall player five times in her career, has been ranked No. 1 in the world for a total of 319 weeks, and has the second-most Grand Slam wins of all-time (23 victories).
Off the tennis court, Williams is dedicated to her life as a wife and mother. She launched a line of designer apparel called Aneres, has a collection of handbags and jewelry, is a certified nail technician, has a clothing line called Serena, and has plenty of other influences in fashion.
6. Shaquille O’Neal
Shaquille O’Neal is a 50-year old retired Hall of Fame basketball player that spent 19 years in the league. He was the No. 1 draft pick in 1992 and became a four-time champion, two-time scoring champ, 15-time All-Star, MVP, three-time Finals MVP, and Rookie of the Year in 1992.
O’Neal is what many people consider a do-it-all type of guy. He’s known for his charity work and good deeds, but also found success in commercials, reality television, film, rapping, DJing, and was even a reserve officer for the Los Angeles Port Police. He genuinely loves to live his life.
5. Von Miller
Von Miller is a 33-year old outside linebacker for the Buffalo Bills of the NFL. He’s entering his first season with the team after stints with the Broncos and Rams. He’s a two-time Super Bowl champion, Super Bowl MVP, Defensive Rookie of the Year, and has 115.5 career sacks.
Miller is a genuine community guy that loves to give back and volunteer his time or money. He opened Von’s Vision, which provides eye care for children in the Denver area, and he also owns a chicken farm in DeSoto, Texas – his hometown. He has a degree in poultry science.
4. Russell Westbrook
Russell Westbrook is a 33-year old point guard for the Los Angeles Lakers. He’s widely regarded as one of the most explosive and versatile players in basketball history, but has had a hard time converting that talent into wins. He has struggled to stay on one team since 2019.
Outside of basketball, Westbrook is highly into fashion and has a streetwear brand called Honor the Gift. He was also named Marketing Creative Director of True Religion in 2016. He has produced two films as well, an autobiography and a film about the Tulsa race massacre.
3. Maria Sharapova
Maria Sharapova is a 34-year old recently-retired Russian female tennis player. She made over $38 million during her career in prize earnings, which is third all-time. She finished her career with a 645-171 singles record, 36 singles titles, five Grand Slams, and 21 weeks at No. 1.
Sharapova has always been open about her love of candy and she turned that love into a passion with the launch of Sugarpova. It’s a business that provides guilt-free candy options around the world. The premium candy line sells everything from chocolate to gummies.
2. Stephen Curry
Stephen Curry is a 34-year old point guard for the Golden State Warriors. He was the seventh overall draft pick in 2009 and has spent his entire career with the team. He’s widely regarded as one of the greatest point guards of all-time and is the most lethal shooter we’ve ever witnessed.
In addition to being the face of the Under Armour footwear line, he’s an ambassador and investor in Palm, does a lot of charity work, has a film and TV deal with Sony Pictures, and is the executive producer of Holey Moley and Ultimate Home Championships (two game shows).
1. LeBron James
LeBron James is a 37-year old positionless basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers. He was the No. 1 overall draft pick in 2003 and is an 18-time All-Star, four-time champion, four-time MVP, six-time All-Defensive player, four-time Finals MVP, and three-time All-Star MVP.
James keeps himself busy in the offseason and even during the season. He has his own production company, recently starred in Space Jam 2, owns over a dozen Blaze Pizza locations, has a stake in Beats Electronics, and even signed a billion-dollar lifetime deal with Nike.
Famous Athletes Have Much More to Give
In 2018, Laura Ingraham told superstar basketball player LeBron James to ‘shut up and dribble’ after he started ‘talking politics’ in a post-game press conference. Her comments stirred quite the controversy as athletes started to stand up for themselves, their pride, and their integrity.
Ingraham’s comments were ignorant because it insinuates that famous athletes are nothing more than just that – famous athletes. When in fact, they’re much more than that. They’re not only talented at sport, but they hold an influence in other industries, platforms, and investments.
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Anyone who thinks famous athletes should ‘shut up and dribble’ needs to rethink their mindset. Think about if it were the other way around. Let’s say you’re a construction worker – are you going to act like you have nothing else to give other than your skills as a construction worker.
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