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why do we pay athletes so much

Summer is the offseason for professional football and basketball. ItБs the time when teams are making deals and decisions about players who may help win championships. This summer has been busy. Look at some of the biggest Б and most expensive Б offseason deals. Б The Washington Wizards signed star guard John Wall to a contract extension that will pay him $170 million over four seasons. Б The Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets signed similar contracts with their superstars, Stephen Curry and James Harden. Б The Washington Redskins failed to sign quarterback Kirk Cousins to a long-term deal. As a result, Cousins will play for almost $24 million this season and then become a free agent.


The money that teams pay star players is eye-popping. Wall, Curry and Harden will each make $40 million to $45 million a year for playing basketball. To give you some idea how much that is, about half of the households in the United States make less than $56,000 per year. Forty-five million dollars is more than 800 times (! ) that figure. So athletes in popular sports make a lot more money than important people such as teachers, police officers and firefighters. Somehow that doesnБt seem fair. But one of the reasons pro athletes make so much money is that we love to watch their games. Media companies pay the leagues and teams billions of dollars for the rights to show the games on television and other video devices.


These businesses pay the money because they know millions of fans will watch the games. TV networks then sell ads for cars, pizza and lots of other stuff that they show during the games. I once counted more than 150 ads during a single pro football game on television. The teams also make money by selling shirts, hats, coffee mugs and anything else you might want with the team logo. IБll bet plenty of KidsPost readers have lots of team stuff. The Washington Redskins even have pacifiers and bibs with the team logo for the familyБs littlest football fans. So if you think athletes make too much money, maybe you should stop watching the games or buying team products.


That might not be such a bad idea. Too many people, including kids, spend too much time watching sports instead of doing other things. Kids should play touch football or shoot hoops at the park instead of watching millionaires play games on television. Or turn off the TV and read a book. Or play a board game. Or at least stop being surprised that pro athletes make so much money. We are the ones helping pay their salaries. Bowen writes the sports opinion column for KidsPost. He is the author of 22 sports books for kids. His latest book is called Б. Б
I've never understood why Celebrities and Athletes get paid so much more than anyone else. How is it that one man can make 14 million dollars simply putting a round ball through a hoop?


Or how does an actress get paid so much for an hour and a half film? Has it ever bothered anyone else how much money these people make each year? It seems like one of these people's salaries could pay off a lot of other people's debt, or college tuition, or whatever. I'm not supporting socialism, but I do think that these people get paid way to much to simply entertain us. We even allow many of these people to get away with things that many people with less money and fame wouldn't be able to get away with. Wasn't America founded on equal justice for all? Not just decent justice for the poor, and let the rich off the hook because they can pay more.

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