Basketball players moving to Europe might well be interested in European basketball salaries and how much they can earn for their sport moving abroad. Like all professions, European basketball salaries will obviously vary depending on multiple factors – the skill of the player, the team they’re playing for, the league that team plays in, negotiations and an element of luck. However as a general rule European basketball salaries are still lower than those in the US.
The reason European basketball salaries are lower is really to do with the popularity of the sport. While in the US basketball is widely watched and enjoyed, in Europe different sports are more successful such as football (soccer), cricket, rugby and tennis. Basketball in Europe then is more of a fringe sport not even shown on much television, and this is reflected by European basketball salaries. In most sports the high salaries of the players simply reflects the fact that there is a lot of money in the industry due to the large number of fans attending games, paying to watch them on television and buying merchandise etc. Quite simply there isn’t enough money in the sport for the European basketball salaries to be that high. As such players such as Lynn Greer and Anthony Parker were forced to come to the American NBA on salaries under 2 million USD as they couldn’t get that much from their European basketball salaries with any teams showing how much lower European basketball salaries are when compared to those in the US. As such the majority of highest paid European basketball stars move to the US to play for the NBA where they will experience higher salaries and more fame.
Saying that European basketball salaries are low is of course meaning low in comparison to the salaries in the US and salaries for other European sports. All sports are paid fairly highly in comparison to other professions and most European basketball salaries are still more than enough to live on comfortably.
European basketball salaries will also depend on the European country. In Russia for example the European basketball salaries in Russia are slightly higher as the teams have a slightly higher budget. The PBC CSKA (a Russian team known as the ‘Red Army’ which plays in the Eastern European VTD United League) for example pay some players European basketball salaries of around 4 million USD for a year which is higher than a lot of other European basketball salaries.