Legendary golfer Tiger Woods has joined NBA stars Michael Jordan and LeBron James as the athletes who have surpassed $1 billion in net income in their careers, Forbes magazine reported Friday.
Woods, who at 46 is trying to return to the elite after his 2021 car accident, has accumulated a total earnings of about 1.7 billion dollars throughout his 27-year career, the publication noted.
Less than 10% of his income comes from the prizes he receives for his sporting victories, which include 15 Grand Slam trophies, while the rest is earned from sponsorships and other businesses, including course design and event companies.
According to Forbes, Woods earned $68 million in income outside of golf in the last 12 months.
Michael Jordan, winner of six NBA rings in the 1990s with the Chicago Bulls, was the first athlete to reach a fortune of 1,000 million dollars, driven by his advertising contracts and the sale of sports products.
Current Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James followed in his footsteps by becoming the first active NBA player to reach that earnings mark, Forbes reported last week.
Woods’ inclusion in this exclusive club coincides with a schism in the golf world following the creation of a new circuit backed by Saudi Arabia, the LIV Golf series, which has recruited some PGA figures.
Former player Greg Norman, head of the new competition, said Woods was even presented with a “nine-figure” offer to join.
Weeks ago, Woods declared that he would stay on the PGA circuit where he is, along with Sam Snead, the golfer with the most titles won (82).
In his first two tournaments after his serious accident, in which he almost lost his leg, Tiger made the cut at the Augusta Masters and the PGA Championship, from which he then retired exhausted before the final round.