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Chris Pronger shares an awesome story about NHL players and take home income

Published April 13, 2022 at 11:30

Chris Pronger recently returned to Twitter to share some insight into life as a professional athlete. In his first post he shared stories about financial security and who players can and can't trust along the way. You can find that story here.

Today Pronger, who had his career derailed by concussions took to Twitter again to share some indepth information on how athletes salaries are actually collected:

When you hear about X player making $30M over 5 years ($6M/yr) you think wow he made it. However that is not always the reality, in this thread I am going to break down how much they take home and where the rest of it goes.

For this thread here is the example:

X player gets $30M paid over 5 years and earn on paper $6M a year. Here is who they pay:

Right off the bat escrow gets taken out of every check. On average about 10%. Most people have no idea about escrow. https://t.co/uUcpyZaJUW

This is money that the NHL withholds from players in case the 50% revenue share is not met. In most cases the player never sees this money again. So that's 10%

$6M salary minus escrow (10% avg.)

- $5,400,000

Next are federal taxes - 37%

We get bi-weekly checks (13) during the regular season. For each of those checks the gov't gets 37% +-

• $2,000,000

Now you have to pay the local tax. That could be 0% like in TX & FL or as high as 16% in NYC. For this example let's use 8%. There is another 8%

• $432,000

Next is agents. They vary but typically the average is 3%. BTW that is 3% of the gross not post tax. So there is another 3%

• $162,000

So let's total this up now. Player X is now netting $2,806,000. That is a lot of money! But now they have to spend a little more money to do their job effectively.

Housing. Typically players are not from the city they play in so they either rent or buy a house (rent $5k month)

For health you typically have a chiropractor, masseuse and trainer that you are paying for in and out of season. ($20k/yr)

Vehicle. Need to get to and from practice and games. ($75k)

And finally nutrition. Nutritionist and food are $6-7k a month. ($60k/yr)

Now this is all the expenses just to be doing their job at a high level and not living the high life. Which certainly happens but not on this thread. Just a reminder these are averages and not fact!

So Player X is netting $2,591,000. Which is around 43% of the total number. Now keep in mind the average career is 4 years and the average salary is $2M. So yes this is still a nice amount of money but most people don't realize how much comes off the top before they get to invest.

Also keep in mind I am not including when athletes seasons are over they typically go somewhere to relax and unwind. Nor am I including a number of other ancillary expenses that typically come up. For me it was the odd suspension :

It's always great to get a unique outlook at what NHL players experience along the way through their career and Pronger does an amazing job of breaking down the financial challenges that face players.
April 13   |   230 answers
Chris Pronger shares an awesome story about NHL players and take home income

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