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BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: COVID Blocks Calipari From Becoming the Billion Dollar Man

For the last few seasons, I have been keeping track yearly of the combined earnings of all the NBA players under John Calipari, knowing that in the very near future the combined earnings of those players was going to exceed ONE BILLION DOLLARS.  Well, this was the year that Cal guys were finally going to crack that incredible ceiling.  Unfortunately, COVID shut down the NBA for such a period of time that players are only going to get a portion of their salaries for this year.  This cut in salary is going to block Cal from getting to that number, but no worries, he’ll be there real soon.  Just look at the money brought in by Calipari players through the 2019 season:

John Wall (9 seasons): 108.8 million
Anthony Davis (7 seasons): 94.5 million
Enes Kanter (8 seasons): 92.1 million
Demarcus Cousins (9 seasons): 84.6 million
Eric Bledsoe (9 seasons): 76.2 million
Brandon Knight (8 seasons): 64.5 million
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (7 seasons): 59.8 million
Karl-Anthony Towns (4 seasons): 25.7 million
Julius Randle (5 seasons): 22.2 million
Nerlens Noel (6 seasons): 20.3 million
Willie Cauley-Stein (4 seasons): 15.4 million
Trey Lyles (4 seasons): 10.4 million
Jamal Murray (3 seasons): 10.1 million
Devin Booker (4 seasons): 10.0 million
De’Aaron Fox (2 seasons): 10.0 million
Terrence Jones (6 seasons): 8.6 million
James Young (4 seasons): 6.7 million
Malik Monk (2 seasons): 6.4 million
Archie Goodwin (4 seasons): 5.7 million
Bam Adebayo (2 seasons): 5.4 million
Skal Labissiere (3 seasons): 4.0 million
Kevin Knox (1 season): 3.7 million
Marquis Teague (4 seasons): 3.4 million
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (1 season): 3.4 million
Andrew Harrison (3 seasons): 2.5 million
Alex Poythress (3 seasons): 2.3 million
Tyler Ulis (2 seasons): 2.2 million
Doron Lamb (2 seasons): 1.4 million
Dakari Johnson (2 seasons): 1.3 million
Aaron Harrison (3 seasons): 1.1 million
Isaiah Briscoe (1 season): 0.8 million
Hami Diallo (1 season): 0.8 million
Jarred Vanderbilt (1 season): 0.8 million
GRAND TOTAL: 765.1 MILLION

And then this is what those guys were set to make in just 2019-20 alone, should the season have been played in full:

2019-20 SALARY (Pre-Covid): 241.5 million
*Mychal Mulder, Wenyen Gabriel, PJ Washington, Tyler Herro, and Keldon Johnson salaries added here

Combining those numbers together, and Cal guys were going to have a combined 1.06 BILLION DOLLARS in earnings after the 2020 season.  It won’t happen now but in 2021, this barrier will certainly be broken.  Because what is truly amazing is the amount of money those guys above already have under contract, guaranteed.  And keep in mind a bunch of those guys, like Monk, Fox, Adebayo, Washington, and Herro are still playing on their first contracts and haven’t signed, what will be, very large contracts in the upcoming years.  But just look at the amount of money still to be made:

2021 and Beyond Salary Already Under Contract: 656.4 million
*doesn’t count player and team options under contract

Now, I didn’t even include the 5 players who graduated or entered the NBA under John Calipari but were not his recruits.  I pulled them out because some would give him credit (I for one) and others would say they go to Tubby or Billy.  But these guys add another nice chunk to Cal too:

Patrick Patterson (9 seasons): 37.8 million
Darius Miller (5 seasons): 6.0 million
Deandre Liggins (4 seasons): 3.8 million
Daniel Orton (3 seasons): 2.9 million
Josh Harrellson (3 seasons): 1.7 million
GRAND TOTAL: 61.2 MILLION

2019-20 SALARY (PRE-COVID): 9.5 million

2021 and Beyond Salary Already Under Contract: 7.0 million

Article written by Bryan the Intern

1 Comment for BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: COVID Blocks Calipari From Becoming the Billion Dollar Man



  1. chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
    10:16 am June 29, 2020 Permalink

    Did you include the dough that Orton made in the Phillipines, that Jorts made in China, and that Briscoe made in Estonia (or Latvia or wherever)? 😉