20 Highest-Paid NBA Players of All Time

Shaquille O'Neal cashed in during his playing days | Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Shaquille O’Neal cashed in during his playing days | Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Some suggest that the best way to get to Carnegie Hall is “practice.” Sure, technically, this is the tail end of a joke, but that doesn’t make it any less true. For anyone who wishes to reach the pinnacle of anything, really, practice is beyond vital. Obviously.

Yet, if we’re completely honest, without any skill to begin with, practice won’t help much. Just ask all those folks who have tried — and failed — to make it to the NBA.

If playing in the NBA was easy, everyone would do it. Not only does this league provide individuals with a path toward international fame, but for the best players in the game, it also provides the opportunity to make more money than one could possibly know what to do with. Seriously, even NFL players are jealous of today’s top basketball contracts.

Of course, if you think the money NBA players make nowadays is outlandish, just wait until you hear about the career earnings of some of these individuals. It’s, in a word, bonkers. With that in mind, excluding the salaries from the 2016–17 season, here’s a look at the 20 highest-paid players in NBA history.